A bustling Las Vegas has been hosting the 50th edition of the Consumer Electronics Show. It is the first major hi-tech exhibition of the year and is bigger than ever with a record breaking exhibit space of more than 300,000 square metres.
“You know, there is not one huge trend that anyone is really excited about, but I think there are a number of different areas that people are looking to see more of. That’s things like self-driving cars and the Internet of Things,” opined Roger Cheng, editor of CNET technology news website.
Internet of Things products include a shirt with sensors measuring movement, breathing, pressure, and body temperature. Or a connected hairbrush that gives an update on the hair’s health.
These kind of devices are more and more embedded in our daily lives, which is now seen as a whole ecosystem permanently connected.
“The future is going to be that you have it in your kitchen. You have it in your connected home. You will have it 24 hours a day. Today you only have it in your connected home. But as you are driving in your car, as you’re going to work, as you’re in your mobility situation with your mobile devices you will have it there as well,” said Werner Goertz, Research Director at Gartner Technology Research Centre.
But connected devices come with a risk. Analysts warn of security breaches with so many small companies creating devices that depend on internet connectivity.
“One of the problems with this is, we are seeing so many sensor devices, so many little IoT (Internet of Things) devices, that don’t have the computer platform, that are cheap, that don’t have the build of materials to even be able to implement proper security algorithms. They can not process security properly,” warned Werner Goertz.
Any device that is connected to the Internet can be hacked and personal data can be stolen. In worst cases, these devices can also be hijacked and used in attacks on internet services and websites.