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Consumer electronics are evolving rapidly, driven by customer demand for new features to adapt to changing realities.
Consumer electronics stands as one of the biggest industries that showcase technological advancements most clearly. Today, most people have devices in their homes that would have only been available to the biggest research laboratories and the ultra-wealthy in the most recent past. As technological capability continues to grow, manufacturers are in a race to roll out devices that can change the quality of life.
The past few years have been a particularly active period in the industry. First, the pace of tech advancement has increased exponentially, along with the number of companies involved in producing the devices. In addition, a variety of events have shaped the direction of innovation, shifting the focus of big and small manufacturers alike to certain areas. These trends are a big opportunity for everyone in the industry, from large-scale manufacturers to small startups and their investors. Those who can get ahead of the curve will be able to reap the benefits of meeting increasingly large and seemingly endless customer demand. That demand is estimated to cross $1.5 trillion in five years.
This sector of the industry has been driven to prominence recently in large part by the global pandemic. Companies have worked hard to provide new devices that can be used to safeguard people from illness. Those devices have spanned the gamut, from smart face masks that provide N95-grade protection while also delivering UV sterilization and voice projection to robots that can disinfect spaces autonomously.
There has also been a trend toward telemedicine and health monitoring, with McKinsey projecting that the market will reach $250 billion soon. Many smartwatch brands have included more sensors on their products for more holistic health tracking, and AI monitoring systems for elderly people have also been deployed to automatically raise alerts when they sense any health issues, even if the affected person is unable to do so themselves.
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Nowadays, up to 71% of people are working from home, according to Pew Research. That’s an amazing increase from recent years, and the consumer electronics industry has been providing just the devices to facilitate that for all parties involved, from employees and workplace supervisors to students and schoolteachers. Ergonomically-designed furniture with controls to change the fit at any time are now commonplace, and screen technology to deliver crisp viewing experiences with minimal eye fatigue can also be seen in an increasing number of home offices.
As many people have also begun to handle most of their tasks themselves, companies have also begun to provide tools to facilitate the growing DIY trend. Several companies, including Samsung, have shown off domestic robots that can handle everything from dishwashing to laundry and potentially serving drinks. For more hands-on people, getting access to tools like battery-powered cordless airbrushes allows even novices to take on home improvement projects, and other similar items are now attainable as prices have dropped despite expanding feature sets.
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There has been a shift backward from public transport across the globe, as people look to minimize physical interpersonal contact until the all-clear is given by health authorities. But as countries have reopened, the problem of getting people from point A to B efficiently, comfortably and safely has returned. Thankfully, there has been a lot of innovation in that space as well, with companies offering new and improved versions of everything from scooters and electric bikes to self-driving cars.
Many companies have also focused their efforts on delivering vehicles that would have seemed to come from Sci-Fi movies just a few years back, such as the Cadillac flying car unveiled by GM earlier in the year. Some have already completed live tests and are, from all indications, destined for the market within the next few years.
On the whole, it is clear that the consumer electronics industry is evolving at a very fast pace. That provides immense opportunities for people who can make the most of the trends and provide customers with what they need, when they need it by using new technologies in manufacturing, artificial intelligence and other fields to provide improved features across all sectors of the industry.
Related: Why Entrepreneurs Should Keep Up With New Technologies
Entrepreneur Leadership Network Contributor
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