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This is a reprint of my email newsletter from last week (a new email newletter is sent out every Thursday night). You can subscribe at http://eepurl.com/bjalx5

I’m kicking off my first newsletter of the year from CES 2016, where thousands of companies from around the world are showing off their latest and greatest products.

We’re only about halfway through the weeklong event, but here’s what you should take away from this massive show, which has more than 150,000 attendees in Las Vegas every year:

** Cars are now quickly moving to self driving technologies that have deep implications on a whole raft of things, from manufacturing to new kinds of cameras.
** Augmented Reality glasses made a HUGE leap in quality this past year. They’re still not ready for consumers, but it’s time to start using these in your business.
** Virtual Reality is here and it's not going away. If you’re in the media business, it’s time to put big money into building content. There are a ton of new 360-degree cameras to enable just that.
** IoT and Bluetooth connectivity keeps spreading to everything, which enables not just new products, but new business models as well.
** Home automation is finally becoming easier, thanks to new products like Amazon’s Echo or startups like Seven Hugs, which has a new remote that changes depending on what device you’re aiming at.

What can you take away from CES for your business? Well, for me it’s more of an expectation that all products will be smart, connected and easier to use. Amazon Echo is a great example of that. You just talk to it and it talks back. “Alexa, play the Beatles.” “Alexa tell me the news.”

Further off, you see that augmented reality is going to be huge. Already companies like Caterpillar are using it to conduct training for its mechanics, but this year the screens got a lot smaller and sharper, so you’re seeing them being used in more projects.

This year, for consumers, though, is when they will discover VR. The line to get to the Oculus booth was more than an hour long yesterday and today we’ll be getting a private run through with the HTC/Valve Vive. Yesterday I ordered my Oculus headset, which cost me $599 (and then you’ll need a high-end gaming PC to run it too).

Here’s a look at the best I’ve seen come out of CES over the past week:

I talk with Gary Shapiro for 20 minutes, he runs CES: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153813159579655/

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Kopin shows off smart eyewear that has very small screens and the best audio capabilities I’ve seen:
https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153817407904655/

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ODG shows me its augmented reality glasses, which have a wider field of view than previous versions:
https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153812695049655/

Infinity AR showed me its AR glasses, which have two video cameras that do depth sensing: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153815469519655/

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I get a look at Amazon Echo, from a developer’s point of view: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153811243564655/

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16 sensors let Withings new thermometer make it easy to take readings: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153813704444655

There were a ton of Bluetooth-connected smart devices like this. Here’s another, a smart pregnancy test:
https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153816500399655

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Nvidia had a couple of important announcements, the first is its new Maxwell GPU: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153814154184655

The second is a powerful box that will enable better self-driving features:
https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153814155259655

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Here announced new maps that are optimized for self-driving cars: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153815589979655

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Magic announced a new “super human” assistant that runs $100 an hour: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153815790494655

This will be a trend this year, as a variety of messengers add new ways to get help.

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Parrott has a new fixed-wing drone that flies 50 mph: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153813706109655

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Nikon hit at GoPro with a 360-degree sports action video camera: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153815578719655

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Vuze showed me a new $700 3D 360-degree video camera coming in August. This is a breakthrough because the rig I used last year cost $5,500 and doesn’t do 3D: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153815108339655/

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Avegant Glyph started shipping its new headset, which lets you work or watch a movie in privacy. I have one and the screens are very sharp. I’ll be using it while traveling so people next to me on a plane can’t see what I’m doing: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153816224824655

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Google’s Tango depth sensing technology started to be demonstrated and here’s a great primer on what that is:
https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153812527579655

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Lots of car news came out of CES, here’s some:

GM and Lyft announce a partnership: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153812496129655

GM invested half a billion in Lyft, and is working on self driving technologies.

Volkswagen announced a bunch of stuff including an electric van prototype: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153816507339655

Chevy Bolt, the $30,000 200 mile range electric car: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153816510114655

+++++

Intel shows off a drone that can navigate itself: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153816517564655

+++++

Finally, something fun. The Mix Fader is a Bluetooth-connected tool for those of you who want to be a DJ:
https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153815360724655/

But what’s it really like to see a ton of companies at CES? In this 40 minute video you meet dozens of companies at the Pepcom Digital Experience event (a press event where hundreds of companies are in a room, all showing their latest): https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153816146624655/

This was the first CES I could broadcast live on Facebook. Others were doing Periscope. People around the world loved watching as I went from booth to booth to get pitched on everything from a smart plant pot to digital locks.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

As a Rackspace futurist, I keep my finger on the pulse of Silicon Valley and global trends, to offer insights into what’s coming next in tech and why it’s important to you.

Since 2009, I’ve traveled near and far, meeting with startups, innovative companies and visionaries, as well as evangelizing the Rackspace managed cloud story.

I read all my email at scoble@rackspace.com and anything done in response to this newsletter goes to the top of my inbox. I’m also at +1-425-205-1921 or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble.

Please share this newsletter on your social networks or via email. If you received this from a friend, you can subscribe (or unsubscribe) here: http://eepurl.com/bjalx5

And props to Hugh Macleod and team for creating art each week. Find more at http://www.gapingvoid.com/
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Loved his peaceful smirk.
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Thank you Google!

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Love these guys- playing at Sodo Showbox tonight!

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I'm back teaching, this time on global citizenship and digital storytelling at University of Washington. This time at Mary Gates Hall.
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Home stretch! $1300 and 8 days left! Would you help SalaamGarage give those who've aged out of foster care in Seattle a voice?! #fostercare  #seattle http://ow.ly/vOYFg

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Home stretch! $1300 and 8 days left! Would you help is give those who've aged out of foster care in Seattle a voice?! http://ow.ly/vOYFg

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The only people who achieve their #dream are the ones who take risks & reach for the impossible http://virg.in/rmn
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