If this sounds like Sony could be taking on Netflix, it should be noted that Netflix also announced at CES 2014 that Sony would be a partner in its 4K Ultra HD streaming service. Sony’s service could be seen as a Netflix or cable competitor, but at least for now it’s being targeted specifically at PS4 and mobile device owners and seems to be intended more as a shot at Microsoft’s Xbox One and its living room ownership ambitions.
Swinging back to earlier in the conference, what’s being called the “Internet of Everything” — a term nicked from Qualcomm’s (QCOMM) 2013 CES keynote — started with a push from Samsung, which revealed its Smart Home platform as CES 2014 ramped up.
Samsung’s initiative to put itself at the center of the connected home has potential, thanks to its dominant position as a smartphone and tablet seller (the devices most likely to be used for remotely accessing and interacting with the home). Its established home appliance business also helps — the company has been putting LCD displays and Internet connectivity in refrigerators and washing machines for several years now.
And don’t forget about the large number of Samsung Smart TVs in homes, nor the company’s experience in building software applications for mobile devices. Samsung is also openly courting third parties, trying to make Smart Home a platform that connects all of these connected devices and makes them accessible through a single interface — currently a Holy Grail among home automation.
Intel is trying to regain footing after being caught off guard by the mobile revolution, and CEO Brian Krzanich is hoping to be on the vanguard of the next stage, where everything is connected. Putting Intel chips in smartphones is still important, but he wants Intel to be at the cutting edge of the next generation of connected devices including household appliances, health monitors, fitness bands and other smart wearables. In addition to its own smartwatch, at CES 2014 the company announced a contest designed to spur inventors to create new wearable technology concepts.
That “Internet of Everything” theme has permeated CES 2014 ever since Intel and Samsung took to the stage, and yesterday was full of products and initiatives that have everything from cars to toothbrushes having Wi-Fi, cellular or Bluetooth radios that connect them to the Internet.
My inbox has been full of pitches about connected devices, and I have a Wi-Fi-equipped, smartphone-controlled slow cooker arriving for a test sometime after CES wraps up. (I’ll let you know then if “smart” makes slow cooking chili any more foolproof.) In the meantime, stay tuned for more CES 2014 updates.
As of this writing, Brad Moon did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.