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Carat @CES 2019 Key Trends Report



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Over the course of three days, Carat was focused on how the latest technologies could be applied to current brand and business challenges. It is our goal to ground the innovations we saw in an understanding of human intelligence that prepares brands for today, tomorrow and the future.

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Carat @CES 2019 Key Trends Report

  1. 1. Key Trends Report
  2. 2. CES offers us both the opportunity to see new and exciting trends and technologies, as well as the challenge of sifting through the clutter to find them. We believe that the importance of CES is to explore, educate and find the skills, platforms, and partners that will continue to scale, inspire and impact business results. Over the course of three days, Carat was focused on how the latest technologies could be applied to current brand and business challenges. It is our goal to ground the innovations we saw in an understanding of human intelligence that prepares brands for today, tomorrow and the future.  2 ”CES allows us to attend inspiring sessions designed to open our minds to new possibilities. We’ve met with AI music composers, platforms that can measure emotional range and companies that turn CPG packaging into media channels. Expanding our understanding of and openness to these kinds of possibilities is why we come to CES.” Angela Steele, Chief Strategy Officer, Carat US Campaign US, CES: Are Agencies Still Going There For Inspiration?
  3. 3. 3 The Tech Grid 2019 High Risk Low Risk Future Bet (1-5 Years) Act Now (<1 Year) VR CES 2019 We’ve distilled the complexity and general chaos of the CES show floors into 15 key categories, plotting these on a matrix to lay out each technology’s potential to move your business. Our methodology takes into account the tech’s inherent riskiness, readiness to go to market, potential business impact, and other considerations. This matrix is a helicopter view of where we advise marketers to make their technology and innovation investments over the next 12 months. Flying Cars AI 5G Data Security Self Driving Cars E-Sports 8K Blockchain Commercial Spaceflight Connected Homes Wearables Augmented Reality Facial Recognition Voice
  4. 4. Transparency 2019 will be the year of transparency with consumers becoming much more aware of how their personal information is used by marketers. With recent revelations of data hacks and apps opaquely tracking location and ‘private’ messages, brands will need to be aware of how platforms are asking consumers to ‘opt-in’ for data sharing and use. Global data privacy regulation changes will mean more visibility in all parts of the advertising pipeline and further transparency in media’s entire supply chain. At CES we met more startups focused on putting data security at the heart of their platforms using cryptography and blockchain. 4 CES 2019
  5. 5. Human Design Voice continued to dominate CES trends with many devices infused with voice activated interfaces, even toilets! This trend will continue as consumers become familiar with digital assistants, particularly as we continue to see the growth of the smart speaker market. This year we saw more devices with more useful services, the continued battle between Google and Amazon, and other players such as LQ’s ThinQ and Samsung’s Bixby raising their profiles. However, Google’s Assistant was inescapable, dominating both the show floor and the Vegas skyline. Larger screens, eye-tracking and mood tracking cameras are allowing tech to better inform services with behavioral data. Wearables were expanding their applications beyond fitness, including sleep, baby care and even battling loneliness. This key trend saw technology designed to complement humans rather than dominate them. 5 CES 2019 Byton Lovot Philips Smart Sleep LG ThinQ
  6. 6. Stream Wars CES is famous for TV technology. This year’s focus was split between 8K resolution, huge screens, and the innovation in roll-able and foldable screens. However, brands were focused on the content that will be streaming on these connected devices. The launch of Disney+ streaming service, the promise of original content from Apple, AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner, and the expansion of Comcast’s own streaming services, will see a rise of significant challengers to the dominance of Netflix. Surprising news came from Apple, who has largely avoided big announcements at CES and SXSW the last 5 years, announcing their partnerships with LG, Vizio and Samsung allowing access to Airplay, HomeKit and iTunes to be preinstalled on Samsung TVs. This marks an opening of Apple’s vaunted closed ecosystem, seeking to scale their original content as the streaming war continues to escalate. 6 CES 2019 LG Rollable OLED TV Samsung 8K 98inch TV Apple Partnerships Disney Streaming
  7. 7. Immersive Media We saw a big shift from previous years, from the growth potential of VR, to more focus on the scalability of AR. VR headset providers like Oculus Quest and HTC Vive tried to untether users, however, reaction overall about the form factor was lukewarm. Meanwhile AR presence has expanded to a more scaled device ecosystem of smartphones, headsets and displays, signaling continued growth in the years ahead. The trend of immersive media goes beyond devices and headsets, with the storytelling expectations of immersive media rising rapidly. 360º and 180º video, live-streaming, the rise of gaming platforms and e-sports, all require content that puts users in the driving seat of the narrative. We expect to see this trend move beyond these technologies into more traditional platforms. Activision’s keynote regarding e-sports and brand partnerships was new for CES, expanding gaming’s profile beyond brands sometimes ‘niche’ view of the medium. We expect to see gaming’s influence grow in consumer goods. 7 CES 2019 E-Sports Disney x Audi & Holo-ride Oculus Quest WayRay AR Display
  8. 8. Old Rules, New Tech How do brands advertise in a fractured, confusing environment? Increased media fragmentation and the rise of services and utilities through IoT, audio, digital assistants, streaming, E-comm, blockchain, AR and VR (PHEW) mean the need for clear and consistent messaging. Brands will need to go back to the core discipline of brand management, adapting old rules about brand consistency, clear visual identity, sonic ID’s, audio tracks, haptics, mood, phrasing, and story-arcs to maximize experiments in new platforms. Building brand services and identity across expanding platform opportunities requires a strict understanding of the value a brand can bring to a consumer and how easy it is for a user to recall the brand. We expect to see a refocus on longer term brand building. 8 CES 2019 AI Assistant Data Partnerships Brand Recognition 1st Party Data Brand Identity In All Forms
  9. 9. The Car Renaissance The autonomous car has been a staple of the tech industry and CES over the last few years. CES 2019 went deeper on in-car experiences and impact of the new-age of travel to consumers. In-car entertainment platforms, work areas and conferencing capabilities were front and center across a range of concept cars from big auto manufacturers. Dare we say it, we also saw the closest thing to a flying car make it onto the main show floor with Bell unveiling their air taxi. This comes as Uber announced its delivery of an aerial rideshare network by 2023. All these auto services rely on the vital infrastructure rollout of smart city technology and 5G networking where the flow of data to connected devices will be imperative. Cars will become an increasingly important source of behavioral data for brands, and become an environment to offer immersive, on-the-move, brand experiences. 9 CES 2019 Byton Kia Concept Car Bell Air Taxi Continental Driverless & Robot Deliveries
  10. 10. 5G Is On Its Way…But Not Here Yet The biggest hype of CES 2019 was easily 5G. Seemingly a distant trend last year, CES 2019 5G was front and center with big carriers such as Verizon and AT&T claiming the first 5G rollout, yet the reality is that the technology is very much still in development. With 5G handsets still in prototype, the rollout looks to be more realistic towards the end of the year, with its impact more likely at CES 2020. However, as reflected in Apple’s recent financial revisions due to slowing handset sales, consumers seem to be slowing down their desire for the ‘newest’ devices. Tariffs are also an impact in this area. 5G will be transformative to IoT, content streaming and smart city integration, but expect conversations on 5G to continue over the next couple of years as devices and infrastructure catch up. 10 CES 2019 D-Link 5G Router Lots of 5G Hype Samsung 5G Prototype AT&T 5Ge?
  11. 11. Next Steps To A Successful Innovation Strategy Post-CES 11 What consumer need is your brand solving for? How will you get people to care? What is the most cost efficient and quickest way to test your hypothesis? How will you measure success? How scalable is your innovation? Does it need to be? Do you have assets that work for this? If not, what will need to be created? What are the build vs. distribution costs? How will people discover this? Build out a roadmap that includes “go or no go” triggers – should you implement or halt? CES 2019
  12. 12. 12 Watch Carat’s CES kick off keynote + panel here. Contact Us To learn more or discuss how human intelligence and innovation strategy can help drive value for your business, please contact Check out Carat’s podcast: The Human Element. Exploring how insight and humanity impact modern marketing to build stronger brands. Angela Steele CSO, Carat US Sarah Stringer Head of Innovation, Carat US