Our Trip to CES 2016 – Part 1

CES, also known as the Consumer Electronics Show, is an internationally renowned electronics and technology trade show, attracting major companies and industry professionals worldwide. The annual show is held each January at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States.

PEAK sent two of our own, Bobby Samai (Director of Marketing) and Adam Thomas (Operations Systems Analyst) to attend the largest consumer electronic show on the planet. PEAK will post a three-part series about how the trip went, what cool technology we saw, and what we learned at CES 2016.

The trip started out like many others, with a long car ride to the Portland Airport.  Thankfully, we adhered to best practices when flying and arrived a few hours prior to our flight’s scheduled departure, because we found our flight had been canceled!  The airline arranged to place us on standby for another flight, but this was certainly not a great way to start our trip to the largest consumer electronic show on the planet! We had to wait around for over 5 hours until the next flight, so we found a cozy spot to sit down, recharge our mobile devices and people watch.

Around 3:45pm we were on our way to Las Vegas! We left rainy, cold Portland, OR to land in rainy, cold Las Vegas, NV (booo!), but at least we made it safely. Staying at the MGM Grand was a treat, this massive hotel has five Starbucks! I couldn’t believe it, but I’ll tell you the next morning when everyone was getting ready for CES Day 1, every Starbucks had a line a mile long. Well we skipped getting coffee that morning, we were already overly excited about seeing all the cool high-tech gizmos and gadgets the world has to offer us in 2016. We made our way to the Monorail only to wait an even longer line than Starbucks. I guess when over 170,000 people descend on a city for a single event, you have to be prepared to wait in long lines.

CES BuildingBobby and Adam

Let the fun begin! I was walking into the largest building that I have ever been in, and it was filled with tech goodies everywhere. It was so exciting, we didn’t know where to start. We decided to come up with a strategy on how we wanted to tackle the first of three 200,000 square foot buildings that housed all of the CES expos and vendors. If we didn’t come up with a plan, there was no way that we would have had time to see it all! We started with a simple outside perimeter walk around the first space, and slowly worked our way to the inner larger more extravagant booths.

8K TVOne of the first things that caught our eye was this 120 inch Super Ultra HD 8K television. (We’re tech guys–anything that stinks of being a “computer monitor/television” is always going to tickle our “shiny!” reflex.) This thing was massive, bright, and the clarity was very impressive. We still had another 198,000 more square feet to cover today, so we kept walking. Our next stop led us to some really cool virtual driving simulators with actual cars! The line was too long so we didn’t stop and try it.

Ehang 148 DroneOnwards, there were so many drones! Drones drones and more drones, 2016 is the year of drones. From tiny micro drones to the EHANG 184 human transport drone. When we first saw it, it was covered under a sheet and revealed later that day. It has the capability to take a 260lb person and fly them around for 23 minutes on a single charge. We couldn’t believe it, and no way in heck would we want to be up in the air when the battery died.

Continue Reading Part 2