Insights

3 new interfaces I discovered at CES 2017

EVP Innovation North America
Valtech Canada

April 18, 2017

New interfaces, and ways of communicating/interacting with digital devices got my attention in Las Vegas this year at CES 2017.

As you've heard, the most “omnipresent” was Amazon Echo Alexa. Even though Amazon did not have an official presence at the world’s biggest Consumer Electronics Show, their voice-controlled software, Alexa, was everywhere.

Today, you can ask Alexa to start your Ford before you leave your house, and when you get home, ask her to preheat your smart Whirlpool stove to 400 degrees. She can report the weather, order take-out, or even soothe children having difficulty sleeping, or help them do their homework. (Mattel Aristotle) She’ll even play rock, paper scissors with you.

There are now 7,000 Alexa voice apps, Amazon’s Mike George told a CES crowd last week, as he demonstrated an Alexa-controlled LG refrigerator. She was definitely the star of the show.

-- But Alexa wasn't the only new interface on the showroom floor.

Other User Experience Innovations at CES 2017 showed new ways of communicating with digital devices including holographic touch and AI. I think the 3 interfaces discussed below are the beginning of a new explosion of interfaces for.

1. BMW – Holographic Interface

Offering technology to drivers is always tricky – you don’t want to distract them. BMW has figured it out.

They’ve launched the very first Holographic control interface in a car. When a driver uses the HoloActive Touch System, a floating graphic appears over the console. The interface is designed to stay nice and simple with binary YES and NO buttons.

What’s more the interface gives users haptic feedback, sending a “buzz” signal to your fingers, to let you know you’ve clicked the button.

The car will ask you how you’re doing, and collect biometric data from the seat to confirm your response. The car also allows you to create private zones, so each passenger can have their own music and interactions. It is truly offering a next-level ergonomic, smart, immersive user experience’ a hint into what the driving experience will be in the very near future.

This was inspiring. We just sent one of our experts to Germany to work on a project with a European automobile company to build a better dashboard experience. (I can’t reveal the details now, but I will keep you posted!)

2. Clinc Financial Services Genie "Finie"

Clinc truly revealed that artificial intelligence can do a much better job providing up-to-the-minute banking information and services than humans can.

Ask Finie (short for “Financial Genie”) to tell you how much you spent last month – she’s break it down for you.

Then, ask how much you spent on your birthday last year in Vancouver, and she’ll figure out the day of your birthday, what you spent on dinner, and how much you went over budget compared to most nights on the town.

Ask Finie, “Can I spend $150 on dinner tonight?” She’ll let you know how much, and what your bank balance will be afterward.

Everyone should have a Finie.

3. AiCure - makes sure you take your medicine

Need to make sure your grandma takes her medication?

AiCure uses artificial intelligence to make a “fingerprint” of a patient’s face and memorizes what their medication looks like. Then, the application “watches” the patient take their medication to make sure it is ingested. Then, it sends a confirmation to a clinic or other caregiver.

One of the biggest problems in healthcare is that patients forget to take their meds. With diseases like tuberculosis, or HIV, or other infectious diseases, consistently taking medication helps keep the disease from spreading. This could dramatically alter the course of infectious disease, not to mention help companies doing research on new drugs ensure that their test subjects take the drugs, which means the study results are more reliable.

To find out all the top trends we spotted at CES this year.