Where’s the technology I want at CES?

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Veg...

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas Nevada in January 2010 (cc) David Berkowitz http://www.marketersstudio.com (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My technology needs are simple. I want my phone to check the weather half an hour before I get up. If there’s likely to be frost, it will communicate with a gizmo in my car that will not only defrost the windows, but it will warm up the seats and the steering wheel for me. My heating should also be given a little boost so that downstairs is nice and toasty. Five minutes before I get up, I want it to switch the kettle on downstairs. I want it to gradually bring the lights up in the room so that I wake up gently.

My tablet should automatically download today’s copy of the Times rather than dumbly waiting for me to fire it up and press the button. My phone should check my diary to see whether I have any appointments in London. If so, it should check that the trains and tubes are running OK. If for any reason I need to deviate from my normal route it should be ready for me by the time I look at my phone. I want my phone to check the balance on my Oyster card, If it’s running low, it should automatically top it up. The TV should switch on and automatically turn to my favourite news channel.

If it’s dark and I walk into a room, the lights should automatically come on. If a room is empty for any length of time, the lights should switch off. If any bulbs are blown, and we are running low on replacements, something will magically buy some best value ones from eBay. I should be able to watch or read any media on any visual device in the house. My wife and I should be able to start watching something on the TV and half way through independently watch the remainder on our mobile phones.

The fridge should have a touchscreen that shows the contents in order of sell by dates together with suggestions for recipes. There will be buttons next door to everything so that we can add them to the next order from the supermarket. The cooker will be told what temperature to warm the oven up to and how long the dish needs. The microwave should be clever enough to work out what’s inside it and set the timer accordingly.

The car should go and fill itself up with fuel. As it sits there most of the time not doing anything, it should also automatically check all those annoying comparison sites and renew my insurance and my tax disc. The car should also book itself in for a service, preferably on a day I’m taking the train into London.

I could go on and on, but you get the idea. Everything connected up intelligently. The frustrating thing is that much of this technology is here today. The reason I can’t do all these things is because consumer technology is so disjointed. You might be able to get some of these things individually, but making then all work together is either ridiculously expensive, difficult or both.

So what do I think we’ll see at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas? Higher resolution TVs, flexible phones and a sea of tablets.


3 comments on “Where’s the technology I want at CES?

  1. Excellent, I feel the same. I remember all these programmes in the 80s on ‘How will we be living in year 2000’ and the predictions were pretty much what you are hoping for. Even simplest things and relatively low technology does not seem to permeate our daily lives.
    A glimmer of hope: I recently purchased a Smart TV: that, I thought, is a step in the right direction… a small step.

    Interconnectivity, mmmmm, maybe a business idea…

  2. Pingback: In Our Lifetime: The Future of Tech « SQMerchandising

  3. Martin, Google Now on my Android (an update which came automagically with Jellybean 4.1) phone comes awfully close to a few of those – announcing the weather, showing the route to work including train times (I have never knowingly told the device where I live nor where I work – that bit is scary). You can set your Oystercard to auto top-up by registering it on the TfL website (https://oyster.tfl.gov.uk/oyster/entry.do)…

    But I sympathise with and desire most of what you say too, especially the “cooperation” and “automation” of devices and things around us!

    Technology seems to be almost going backwards and making something more complicated than they need to be, hindering us – rather than helping us.

    I blame commercialism… As an example – a Prediction I made some 15 or 20 years ago has come true recently. As TVs turned from being convex spherical sections to “curved” trinitron screens, to the totally flat panels we have today; I jested to a workmate that the next progression, after the much hyped HD would be TVs curved concavely… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qptWO982YZo

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