Innovations in Product, Engineering and Technology Design

Back in January 2019, we kicked off the year with a review of the Consumer and Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

In that review, we wrote about foldable phones, the growing use of augmented reality (AR) in user experiences, an increasing emphasis on sustainability and the growing role of technology in smart homes.

After the scaled down event in 2021, the CES of 2022 was back with a bang, attracting 45,000 visitors from 119 countries to see the technologies of some 2,300 exhibitors.

Among the most talked about themes of the show were virtual environments, specifically the metaverse. But at CDT we’re a little more interested in some of the physical innovations in the world of product, engineering and technology design.

Healthcare

As experienced as we are in healthcare product design and development, we never cease to be amazed by the innovations in this category showcased at CES.

Take for example the Sengled Smart Health Monitoring Light.

This bulb monitors your breathing, heart rate, sleep and movement.

Oh, and it also provides you with light on a dark winter’s morning. But it does so based on how it senses you’ve slept.

On top of all that, it can connect to your smart assistant and monitor your health metrics at home without the need for any kind of wearable health monitoring or tracking technology.

Then there’s the Withings Body Scanner.

It’s a smart scale that provides a reading of your weight, segmental body composition and heart health.

With the attached handle, the body scanner can scan your torso, arms and legs to deliver a view of body composition and overall fitness via an accompanying app that keeps all your health data together.

Sustainability in Product Design

As you know, Cambridge Design Technology has been pushing sustainable product design for years, so we’d have been amazed if sustainability had not figured strongly at this year’s CES.

We were pleased to see Samsung’s announcement that its TVs and displays manufactured in 2022 will use 30 times more recycled materials than in 2021. The plan by 2025 is to use a proportion of recycled materials in all products – and to introduce more sustainable packaging.

The possibilities for the circular economy received a further boost from the Dutch presence at the show; their pavilion was made from 100% recycled and renewable materials including plant-based bioplastic that can be recycled up to seven times.

US-based Procter & Gamble showed that sustainability in the consumer goods sector is making progress. For example, their Tide washing brand is reportedly working with NASA to look at how clothes can be washed more effectively in environments where water is in short supply.  

Electric vehicles

The Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX takes the prize for being among the most-talked-about electric vehicle at the show – whilst not actually being there.

Electric car driving on a road with electric turbines in the distance

In an online presentation (due to Covid), Mercedes unveiled its new all-electric Vision EQXX, which boasts a 648-mile range on a single charge (compared to Tesla’s 402 miles). Featuring additional power from 117 solar panels, and using sustainable and recycled materials including mushroom fibres, the car’s interior includes a huge AI powered touchscreen that spans the entire dashboard.

Smart Homes

Smart home technologies have been on the menu at CES for years, but 2022 seems to be the year of “smart home security”. Responding to a home security problem known in common parlance as “porch piracy”, smart home brand Eufy showcased its new twin camera doorbell that captures porch visitors across a 160-degree field of vision whilst also showing what’s been delivered and left outside the door at a lower level across a 120-degree range. Will this deter the porch pirates?

Meanwhile, those wanting an all-in-one door security solution can opt for the M-Pwr Smart Door. This integrated product comprises a door with status sensor, doorbell camera, smart lock and motion-activated LED lighting.

Voice activated devices are not new, but this smart faucet – or “tap” in UK English – from Moen combines voice controls with layered motion controls in a new handle-less design.

It integrates with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant and can dispense precise measures of water at required temperatures with voice commands.

Future developments promise integration with other smart water products such as a water monitor and shutoff, leak detector and smart shower controller, all part of Moen’s vision for a smart water network.  

Staying in the home, LG’s CordZero all in one cordless vacuum has to be the ultimate in ‘smart vacuum cleaners’. Quite apart from the self-emptying tower which stores not just the telescopic vacuum wand but also its six attachments, this vacuum cleaner is also WiFi connected for fault diagnosis via an accompanying app.

Entertainment/Wearable Technology Design

Our final highlight is TCL’s NxtWear Air Wearable-Display Glasses which deliver a home-cinema-like display, ideal for use as a secondary display for a smart phone or laptop. Weighing in at just 75g and looking (almost) like a normal pair of sunglasses, the glasses have two 1080p micro OLEDs embedded in the frame, promising the effect of viewing a 140-inch screen from a distance of around 13 feet. According to TCL, VR and AR models are in development.

That’s it for this year’s CES roundup. Happy New Year! It’s certainly going to be interesting.

Next Steps

Don’t forget, if you have ideas for new technologies or products that you want to take to market. Get in touch with Cambridge Design Technology as your first step along with the journey talking all things Product and Technology Design. We’ll be delighted to have a chat about turning your ideas into reality. Call us on 01223 662300 or email info@cambridge-dt.com

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