Online CES Moves to Jan. 11-14

The 2021 CES event, which is going online and was scheduled to start Jan. 6, is moving back to Jan. 11-14, organizers announced.

The new schedule is:

  • Jan. 11: Exclusive media-only access
  • Jan. 12: Exhibitor showcase and conference programming
  • Jan. 13: Exhibitor showcase and conference programming
  • Jan. 14: Conference programming


Owned and produced by the Consumer Technology Association, CES 2021 will be an all-digital experience connecting exhibitors, customers, thought leaders and media from around the world. CES 2021 will allow participants to hear from technology innovators, see cutting-edge technologies and the latest product launches, and engage with global brands and startups from around the world, according to organizers.

For more than 50 years, CES has spotlighted technology. Visit for all CES 2021 updates.

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Report: Baby Boomers Slow to Adopt New Technology

Baby boomers, by conventional wisdom, are not entirely nondigital ⁠— they were, after all, the pioneers of adopting home computers — but at this point in their lives, they’re a bit more reluctant about adopting newer technologies.

That’s the genesis of a new eMarketer report that found increased use of voice assistants and smart-home devices has largely skipped consumers born between 1946 and 1964.

The report’s author, Mark Dolliver, writes that along with concerns about privacy, lagging tech adoption among boomers relates to ongoing indifference regarding adoption of new things.

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eMarketer cited a surge in voice-activated technology, which Dolliver said ought to have appeal for older boomers, whose ability to read a small screen and manipulate a tiny virtual keyboard may be declining. Yet boomers who own smartphones have lagged in using the voice assistant functions on devices.

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“We estimate that 38.6% of smartphone boomers will use the voice assistant this year, vs. 49.0% of Gen Xers and 53.1% of millennials,” Dolliver wrote.

The report also claims boomers have scant adoption of smart-home technology, such as monitoring devices, Internet-connected home thermostats and smart appliances. According to a September 2019 AARP survey, penetration of such devices was lowest among the oldest boomers (who might benefit from them most) — falling from 11% among 50- to 59-year-olds, to 10% among 60- to 69-year-olds and to 7% among those ages 70 and older. Boomers also lag in adopting smart speakers, which bump up against their chronic worry about digital privacy.

“We expect just 17.6% of boomers to own smart speakers this year, barely half the device’s penetration among Gen Xers,” Dolliver wrote.

When boomers and seniors do try a new technology and find practical benefit in it, they’re like to stick with it, according to Dr. Alison Bryant, SVP of research at AARP.

“They may not literally be the first kid on the block to adopt it,” Bryant said. “But once they do, they will use it if it’s of value to them. And they have the discretionary income to actually purchase it.”

Parks: Americans Value Technology More Than Ever

Sometimes it take crisis to underscore the value of science and technology.

New data from Parks Associates suggests 53% of U.S. broadband households claim they value technology more now than before, following the outbreak of the coronavirus and the resulting social distancing and shelter-in-place orders across the country.

Parks, in an online survey fielded between March 8 and April 3 to heads of domestic broadband households, found that only 28% of seniors aged 75 and older are self-quarantining, while 70% of consumers overall said they are following social distancing rules, and 30% said they are following shelter-in-place orders or are otherwise self-quarantining.

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The report suggests that increased home confinement has resulted in greater awareness and appreciation for technology. Survey respondents said their intention to purchase consumer electronics in the next 12 months has risen 5% compared with the year prior. More than 20% of respondents said they have subscribed to at least one new OTT video service within the past three months.

“2020 marks an unprecedented time in U.S. and global history. COVID-19 has impacted global supply chains, worldwide businesses, and consumer spending,” senior analyst Kristen Hanich said in a statement. “It has prompted exceptional actions from regulators in terms of both public health and monetary and fiscal policy.”

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Kantar: Technology Continues to Challenge, Drive Media Distribution

Technology will continue to redefine the media landscape in 2020, creating opportunities and challenges for marketers. According to Kantar Worldpanel’s new global 2020 Media Trends & Predictions report, marketers and media owners will be challenged to develop the skills, engagement models and measurement capabilities to meaningfully engage consumers in the crowded media landscape.

Kantar contrends that while new and evolving media channels will create opportunities, the deluge of digital content distribution will make it more difficult to connect with individual consumers.

The report says marketers will need to navigate the ‘data dilemma,’ meeting consumer demand for relevant, personalized content, without breaching trust and privacy. And as third-party cookies start to crumble, advertisers will need to find alternative measurement solutions. A cookie is created when someone first visits a website that wants to store visitor information.

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Kantar says the technology trends transforming the media landscape next year include:

• 5G finally gets real: The marketing industry will be one of the key beneficiaries of the 5G era, enabling far greater capabilities to reach and engage with consumers but taking advantage of the 5G opportunity will require a significant transformation from marketers.

• The battle of the streaming platforms heats up: New players will see the battle of the streaming platforms heat up, but an increasingly cluttered market will drive subscription fatigue among consumers.

• Turning up the volume: Brands will turn up the volume and find their voice as we enter a new age of audio advertising. Newer audio channels are poised to gain mainstream prominence.

• Content meets commerce: Content and commerce will converge as ‘shopvertising’ evolves from shoppable social to shoppable TV and digital out-of-home resulting in a contraction of the closed-loop marketing cycle.

• The spaces that brands can credibly occupy: Brands get back to reality: Brands will balance their digital presence with more real-world experiences, meaning we could see a slowdown in the pace of digital advertising growth.

• Brands take a stand: Taking the lead from consumers, brands will become more radical in 2020. But they need to ensure their media strategy is aligned with their values and purpose.

• Just grow up: influencer marketing must measure what matters: Influencer marketing will mature as brands start to collaborate more deeply and take measurement more seriously in 2020.

• Get ready to play: e-sports goes mainstream: esports will go mainstream over the next 12 months, presenting lucrative opportunities for the media owners and advertisers that learn the rules of the game.

• Turn and face the change: The trend towards media in-housing: The trend towards media in-housing will continue as more brands build their own teams of digital experts, pushing agencies and advertisers out of their traditional comfort zones, into a new collaborative and exciting space.

• Cookies start to crumble: Changing the recipe: The demise of cookies could leave many marketers in the dark. Advertisers need to prepare now for the new “mixed economy”. Direct integrations between publishers and measurement partners will enable true cross-publisher measurement for the first time.

• The data dilemma: Doing the right thing with data: Faced with impending legislation like the California Consumer Privacy Act in January 2020, privacy ethics will come to the fore and marketers will design personalisation initiatives with a people-first, rather than tech-first, mentality.

• Campaign 2020: Political advertising will create crowding and clutter in 2020, especially in the U.S. media landscape. Brand advertisers will need to rethink their strategy during campaign season.

“Increased advertising and content possibilities, along with the data generated, create a plethora of opportunities for marketers and media owners,” Jane Ostler, global head of media effectiveness, said in a statement. “Other channels, like influencer marketing and the newer audio channels, will face a make-or-break moment; their credibility could be at risk unless they evolve and live up to their promise. Marketers will need to improve their understanding of how different touchpoints effectively work for their brands – online and off.”