At this year’s CES Unveiled NY, Shawn DuBravac, Consumer Technology Association chief economist, discussed several current economic and technology industry trends that will impact holiday sales.
In terms of economics, DuBravac said that in the past six months the economy has experienced 6% growth. He noted one key aspect, an increase in consumer credit with “banks willing to extend loans to consumers and consumers willing to take on some of that credit. This is a positive sign for the final months of the year into the holiday season.”
In terms of technology trends driving holiday sales, DuBravac said smart home is an emerging category with tremendous potential. “The smart home arena is inching up in interest as consumers are starting to become more aware of them, and they are showing a great interest in making those a part of holiday buying,” he said.
Digital health and fitness is growing. For the holiday season, the CTA projects $12.5 million in fitness tracker sales. “In the final eight weeks of the year, smart watches and wearables will be a significant part of the holiday season’s annual growth,” DuBravac said. He also noted that the global smart home market will reach $25 billion in 2016.
In addition, DuBravac said the industry expects to see an increasing focus on hub devices, like Amazon’s Echo, as voice recognition technology continues to improve and integrate into the smart home. “The next computer interface is voice. We’ve seen more advancement in this technology in the last 36 months than we did in the first 30 years,” he said.
In a separate presentation at the CES New York event, CTA president and CEO, Gary Shapiro, also discussed the Trump presidency and its possible implications for business moving forward.