There’s no doubt in my mind that it takes a strong, outspoken and extremely intelligent leader to command an organization like the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). The International Consumer Electronics Show is the largest showcase in the technology industry, and when it comes to consumer electronics, they ARE the leader. Last year’s show boasted more than 153,000 attendees who interacted with 3,100 exhibitors covering more than 1.8 million square feet.
Who does it take to lead an organization of such size and caliber?
Adweekdescribes Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of CEA, as a policy guy who speaks out on issues that could impact future technology growth and development. What’s his outlook on next week’s show?
Here are my top three takeaways from his recent interview with Adweek.
1. Advertising- Madison Avenue says CES is the most important show for them. It’s important to see trends and where your customers are. This also goes for our industry and how we advertise on the show floor. CES is THE show and it is a great showcase of how advertisers reach non-traditional consumers in a creative way.
2. What’s Hot-Ultra HD will be hot this year with four times the resolution of current HD. Also, car technology never goes out of style. CES will be home to seven of the 10 largest car manufacturers in the world. Mobile remains a red hot trend. Finally, keep your eyes open for new healthcare products because there’s almost a 25-percent increase in companies showcasing them at this year’s show.
3. Washington Policy-According to Shapiro, 95 percent of attendees find this topic irrelevant because they are there to do business, but they have policy sessions because it’s an important part of the big picture that’s, “technology.” He wants the technology industry’s voice to be heard and in 2012 these sessions did just that. The Stop Online Privacy Act and Protect IP Act had major spotlights in last year’s discussions. Three weeks after these sessions, both bills were dead. CES’ policy panel with Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Darrell Issa made all the difference. This year’s sessions will include more lawmakers than ever (about a dozen).