Some 180K attendees to descend on Las Vegas for CES convention

Updated January 7, 2018 - 7:31 am

About 180,000 visitors are expected to swarm Las Vegas beginning this weekend to be among the first to experience 8K television, self-driving vehicles and robots that offer home security.

The visitors, along with hundreds of U.S. and foreign government officials, are arriving for CES, which is now in its 51st year.

It’s the largest expo in Las Vegas by attendees and convention space, sprawling over 2.7 million square feet at the Las Vegas Convention Center, the Sands Expo and Convention Center and the Aria Convention Center.

The four-day event, once known as the Consumer Electronics Show, officially launches Tuesday. It generates $354 million of spending for the city as attendees fill up hotel rooms and restaurants, book nightclub tables and scoop up souvenirs at retail shops.

CES, which is closed to the public, will feature nearly 4,000 exhibitors ranging from $100 billion tech giants to bootstrap entrepreneurs. They cover a wide range of industries, from automobiles and music to health and sports.

As the event continues to mushroom, it is bumping into capacity constraints, said Gary Shapiro, chief executive officer of the Consumer Technology Association, which organizes the show.

CES

“We could have had more exhibitors, but we were out of space,” he said.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority will break ground on the 1.4 million-square-foot expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center on Monday. “We have been the most vocal in asking for (the expansion),” Shapiro said.

The $1.4 billion expansion project will be completed in time for CES 2021, according to the LVCVA.

Shapiro has also been lobbying for more affordable hotel prices. That remains the No. 1 complaint among attendees, he said. For those still seeking accommodations, a four-day stay at the Bellagio next week will cost $2,650, according to Booking.com.

If all goes according to plan, Resorts World will open its $4 billion, 3,000-room hotel-casino across the street from the expanded Las Vegas Convention Center in late 2020, potentially helping avoid a price spike for CES 2021.

Beyond gadgets

The show has moved beyond showcasing the latest consumer home gadgets. About one-third of exhibitors are selling products to other businesses, Shapiro said.

“Our job is to go where the future is going, and the mixture of products will always be evolving,” said Shapiro, recalling the days when the show offered mainly radios and TVs.

Artificial intelligence — the ability of machines to learn from experience and perform some human tasks — will be one of the key buzzwords at this year’s show and will have a larger presence, he said.

Amazon’s virtual assistant Alexa, which uses AI to understand voice, was one of the biggest hits at the 2017 expo. Voice recognition will be featured in a host of products this year, including automobiles, he said.

”This is just the beginning. It is still early for AI,” said Shapiro.

For the first time, CES is setting up a dedicated Artificial Intelligence Marketplace inside the Las Vegas Convention Center’s south hall. The exhibitors will include Rokid, a Chinese company whose voice-activated assistant can give news and weather updates and carry out simultaneous translations between Mandarin and English.

Kai-Shing Tao, chairman and CEO of Remark Holdings, said he will be among those visiting the AI marketplace. His Las Vegas company is developing artificial intelligence solutions for commercial use.

“Last year’s CES show was an intro to AI, and the technology has expanded so much since then,” Tao said. “Every keynote speaker at CES will need to talk about how AI is integrated into their hardware and software.”

About that TV display

The Las Vegas Convention Center will also host the large consumer electronic companies, including Sony, Panasonic, LG and Samsung, as well as auto companies.

LG will feature its 88-inch 8K OLED display, the largest in the world. The screen will have a resolution of 33 million pixels, the highest globally, the South Korean company said this week. Samsung will again show off its curved displays powered by Intel processors.

At the Sands Expo and Convention Center, there will be more than 900 startups in the Eureka Park zone — a 50 percent increase from last year — as well as new sections dedicated to sports technology and digital health.

Eureka Park will feature 42 country pavilions this year. France, Israel, Canada, Egypt and Singapore will be among the nations bringing their startups to the park.

“Countries want to show they are very startup friendly,” Shapiro said.

More than $1.5 billion has been invested in startups featured at the Eureka Park zone since it opened in 2012.

The Aria Convention Center will focus on how technology is changing the entertainment, advertising and marketing industries and will feature speakers from social media giants like Google and Facebook.

Vehicles everywhere

Driveless, electric and connected cars will be another big theme at CES this year. The show will feature 400 vehicle technology exhibitors, including 11 auto manufacturers, turning the expo into the fourth-largest auto show by space.

Ford, Honda and BMW will be among the large manufacturers exhibiting cars and car-related technology.

Two French companies, Transdev and Lohr, will present i-Cristal, a fully autonomous electric shuttle that can hold 16 passengers, while the Chinese startup Byton will unveil its first electric car.

Canadian manufacturer Electra Meccanica plans to show off its three-wheel electric car. The single-passenger vehicle costs $15,500. Tesla, the largest producer of electric cars, will not be exhibiting.

Highlighting the importance of automobiles to the show, Ford Motor Co. President and Chief Executive Officer Jim Hackett will be the first keynote speaker on Tuesday. He will discuss the future of mobility in connected cities.

Lyft Co-founder and President John Zimmer, another keynote speaker, will give his vision of how ride-hailing services will shape transportation and communities. Lyft will make waves during the show as it shuttles people around Las Vegas in autonomous BMW sedans.

The auto section will likely be a hot spot not just for car enthusiasts but also for advertising and marketing managers as the dashboard transforms into a big screen, said Lori Schwartz, founder of StoryTech, a consulting firm that conducts tours of CES.

“All businesses need to understand how and where people are going to be consuming their content,” she said. “The car of the future will be a portable living room.”

Smart cities and robots

A “smart cities” zone will focus on how fifth-generation wireless technology will enable billions of objects like cars, homes and refrigerators to connect to the internet. Public utilities and services will be able to use that data to improve their services. AT&T said last week it plans to begin rolling out 5G this year.

Encounters with robots will be a common occurrence at the show. A robot from Taiwan-based Industrial Technology Research Institute will challenge Scrabble champion Will Anderson to a game. Robotelf Technologies will present a robot with dual cameras that can watch an empty home or play with children.

The new sports zone will feature wearable technologies and performance measurements to support athletes. The startup Black Box VR will unveil its resistance-based virtual reality fitness experience at the show.

Augmented reality, another hot topic, will have greater representation at this year’s show. Schwartz said AR is finding more traction because it can be experienced through a phone, whereas virtual reality requires a headset.

“AR is showing the most movement on the enterprise side for training, education, business solutions. VR is still trying to find its legs,” she said.

3-D printing, once seen as a game changer for manufacturing, will occupy less space this year.

Tours for time-pressed guests

Each convention center will feature forums dedicated to its particular themes. Overall, there will be more than 200 conference sessions and more than 900 speakers, including, for the first time, a segment dedicated to cryptocurrencies.

Other keynotes will be delivered by Intel Chief Executive Officer Brian Krzanich, Baidu Chief Operating Officer Qi Lu and Verizon Chief Technology Officer Hans Vestberg.

Guests who have limited time or are daunted by the show’s large scale and number of exhibitors can sign up for educational tours by accredited CES partners StoryTech and Shelly Palmer.

A 90-minute tour of the Las Vegas Convention Center or Sands costs about $1,000. A three-hour tour covering both destinations costs about $1,500.

Contact Todd Prince at tprince@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0386. Follow @toddprincetv on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Business
The Venetian gondoliers sing Italian songs
Gondolier Marciano sings a the classic Italian song "Volare" as he leads guests through the canals of The Venetian in Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Building In Logandale
Texas homebuilder D.R. Horton bought 43 lots in rural Logandale. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Indoor farming in Southern Nevada
Experts discuss Nevada's indoor farming industry. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former Fontainebleau could have become a Waldorf Astoria
Months after developer Steve Witkoff bought the Fontainebleau last summer, he unveiled plans to turn the mothballed hotel into a Marriott-managed resort called The Drew. But if Richard “Boz” Bosworth’s plans didn’t fall through, the north Las Vegas Strip tower could have become a Waldorf Astoria with several floors of timeshare units. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
LVCVA CEO Rossi Ralenkotter announces plans to retire
Rossi Ralenkotter, CEO of the LVCVA, on Tuesday confirmed a Las Vegas Review-Journal report that he is preparing to retire. Richard N. Velotta/ Las Vegas Review-Journal
Cousins Maine Lobster to open inside 2 Las Vegas Smith’s stores
Cousins Maine Lobster food truck company will open inside Las Vegas’ two newest Smith’s at Skye Canyon Park Drive and U.S. Highway 95, and at Warm Springs Road and Durango Drive. Cousins currently sells outside some Las Vegas Smith’s stores and at Fremont Street and Las Vegas Boulevard. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas home prices to continue to rise, expert says
Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors, gives homebuyers a pulse on the Las Vegas housing market. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
NV Energy announces clean energy investment
The company is planning to add six solar projects in Nevada, along with the state's first major battery energy storage capacity. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
3 Mario Batali restaurants on Las Vegas Strip to close
Days after new sexual misconduct allegations were made against celebrity chef Mario Batali, his company announced Friday that it will close its three Las Vegas restaurants July 27. Employees of Carnevino Italian Steakhouse, B&B Ristorante and Otto Enoteca e Pizzeria, all located in The Venetian and Palazzo resorts, were informed of the decision Friday morning. Bastianich is scheduled to visit the restaurants Friday to speak to employees about the next two months of operation as well as how the company plans to help them transition to new positions.
Nevada has its first cybersecurity apprenticeship program
The Learning Center education company in Las Vegas has launched the first apprenticeship program for cybersecurity in Nevada. It was approved by the State Apprenticeship Council on May 15. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas union members voting to authorize the right to strike
Thousands of Las Vegas union members voting Tuesday morning to authorize the right to strike. A “yes” vote would give the union negotiating committee the power to call a strike anytime after June 1 at the resorts that fail to reach an agreement. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Small businesses struggle to find qualified candidates
A 2018 survey found that over two-thirds of small businesses in Nevada find it somewhat to very difficult to recruit qualified candidates. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Nevada secretary of state website offers little protection against fraudulent business filings
Property developer Andy Pham tells how control of his business was easily seized by another person using the secretary of state website.
Caesars may be going solo in its marijuana policy
Several Southern Nevada casino companies aren’t following Caesars Entertainment’s lead on marijuana testing.
How much is the Lucky Dragon worth?
Less than a year-and-a-half after it opened, the Lucky Dragon was in bankruptcy.
Gyms and discount stores take over empty retail spaces
Grocery stores used to draw people to shopping centers. But many large retail spaces have been vacant since 2008. Discount stores like goodwill and gyms like EOS Fitness are filling those empty spaces, and helping to draw shoppers back in. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Funding source of Las Vegas stadium for the Raiders is sound, expert says
The stadium is funded in part by $750 million of room taxes, the biggest such tax subsidy ever for a professional sports stadium. Robert Lang, executive director of Brookings Mountain West and The Lincy Institute at UNLV, says that is a good use of public funds. (Richard Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas needs light rail, expert says
Robert Lang, executive director of Brookings Mountain West and the Lincy Institute said he is afraid of a "congestion mobility crisis." Las Vegas needs a light rail system, he said, to accommodate the city's growing number of attractions. (Richard Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Three takeaways from Wynn Resorts' Earnings Call
Matt Maddox came out swinging in his first earnings conference call as Wynn Resorts chief executive officer, boasting of record Las Vegas quarterly revenues and applicants lining up for work.
Star Wars VR Comes to Las Vegas
Sneak peak at the new "Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire" VR experience at the Grand Canal Shoppes.
Elaine Wynn continues her fight to change Wynn Resorts board
Elaine Wynn, the largest shareholder of Wynn Resorts Ltd., is seeking to kick a friend of her ex-husband Steve Wynn off the company’s board of directors. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Zillow is getting into house flipping in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Review-Journal real estate reporter Eli Segall says flipping houses has waned in popularity after the housing bubble burst.
Ellis Island Buys Mt. Charleston Lodge
Ellis Island, which operates a casino, brewery and hotel just off the Strip, purchased the Mt. Charleston Lodge in early April.
Casinos to be penalized for allowing drug-impaired customers to gamble
Nevada Gaming Commission Chairman Tony Alamo talks about an amendment making casinos subject to the same disciplinary standards of preventing people to gamble if impaired by drugs as they are for letting them play while intoxicated by alcohol.
Terrible Herbst to open large travel center in Southern Nevada
The 50,000-square-foot commercial travel center will include 96 fuel pumps and the third White Castle restaurant in Southern Nevada. Wade Tyler Millward reports.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
Hooters owner talks about room upgrades at his hotel-casino
George Ruff, founder and senior principal of Trinity Hotel Investors L.L.C., owner of Hooters Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, talks about recent room upgrades at the hotel. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Passengers Discuss Allegiant Air
Allegiant Air passengers voice their views on the airline at McCarran International Airport on April 16, 2018. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Longtime Las Vegas attorney John Momot dies at age 74
Criminal defense attorney John Momot, who represented mob figures and even played himself in the movie “Casino,” has died.
Trump Slams Amazon for Not Paying Enough in Taxes
Trump Slams Amazon for Not Paying Enough in Taxes Trump tweeted his concerns about the company on Thursday. This isn't the first time Trump commented on the issues via Twitter. August 2017 December 2017 Amazon did hold back on paying state taxes in 1995, but the company has been routinely collecting state sales taxes since then. In 2016, the company's report from the Securities and Exchange Commission confirmed it paid $412 million in taxes.
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like