What’s On

CES Asia Day 2 – The future is served

What do you do when you are bone tired yet hungry for a piping hot and comforting home cooked meal? Well, if you have a pair of robotic hands from Moley –a British robotic company – then it’s no stress at all.

What is different about Moley is the ingenious design – hands only. The company is working with British Master chef Tim Anderson to develop a specially designed kitchen for the robot and train it to become a chef. The ‘hands’ are actually programmed to reproduce Anderson’s exact movements and actions to create gastronomic delights from scratch.

Moley was joined by a host of other vendors and manufacturers at CESAsia 2015 with products designed for a ‘smart home’ bringing us a step closer to an automated home, a not too distant reality.

And it’s a pretty big market. The connected home market is estimated to grow to USD 44 billion by 2017, according to wireless industry group GSMA.

A few home picks at CES Asia that caught my attention:

Zaijia, the robot companion. With a 360 degree camera, this robot companion connects families together as if they are in the same room, even if not. The camera has an inbuilt face movement tracker that can follow you around and automatically switches on when a sound or movement is detected. Zaijia changes how families connect, adding liveliness and humanness back into connectivity, which is appealing. This is invaluable for people such as busy parents eager to witness every moment in their child’s development or grandparents who are less tech-savvy. The success of this product is undisputedly its ability to make technology friendly for all ages because it has a meaningful purpose.

Many wearables can check your health status but uPatch takes it to a whole new level. With a nicotine chip inserted into this wearable, uPatch timely dispenses the medicine which gets absorbed by the skin. It also connects to the smartphone to monitor the medicine intake.It’s hard to warm up to the concept of injecting drugs into directly into the skin but the potential to provide non-pervasive medical treatment beyond nicotine is huge.

And then there was the eSkin thermometer patch from Vivalink that accurately measures temperature. The patch works with a smartphone to provide a range of smart feature possibilities which includes the ability to record and track fevers, simplifying the illness monitoring process in seconds. The smart functionalities of eSkin Thermometer meets the expectation of technology savvy adults, and the thermometer patch is designed to be attractive for young children as well. As the patch looks and feels like a kids’ sticker, similar to a Band-Aid, it alleviates the fear and anxiety associated with taking their temperature.

Day 2 was also the day that 10 budding start-up teams presented their ideas and services in the arena of technology-driven marketing, as part of OMD China’s Innovation Fund – a tech start-up program focused on digital media innovation in collaboration with business accelerator Chinaccelerator.OMD China and Chinaaccelerator will choose 3 winners to seed with 300,000 RMB each to help build them into viable business models for the future.

One of the ideas had a lot of relevance and significance to the home. The Squirrelz – a startup focused on upcycling, which in other words is the concept of remaking, reinterpreting and reimagining unwanted materials into something new, fresh and unexpected.

So, home was certainly a happening place at CES Asia where the right connections facilitated by technology are being made.

Arundhati Saha

Arundhati Saha is the Marketing Communications Director, APAC of the Omnicom Media Group.