As a tribute to Pele, FIFA will ask all member countries to name a stadium after him


In Las Vegas, technology wants to be optimistic despite the surrounding gloom

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the annual consumer electronics gathering in Las Vegas, opens its doors on Thursday amid a gloomy backdrop from inflation to layoffs through supply woes. From January 5 to 8, more than 100,000 professionals from a hundred countries are expected in the glittering hotels of the American city for a huge communication operation around ultra-connected devices and services. In total, the stands will occupy an area of ​​more than 20 hectares. But attendance remains lower than before the health crisis. Steve Koenig, vice president of research at the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), which organizes CES, assures: “The 2023 edition is a new step to return to normal, pre-pandemic levels.” In 2021, the high mass was held online only. And in 2022, “we made a bold decision to come back personally,” recalls Steve Koenig. But the living room was a shadow of itself, there were many empty rooms. This year, TV makers, automakers and advanced AI startups are back in droves. In particular, the South Korean giant Samsung made CES a showcase for the American market. On Tuesday, he highlighted washing machines that self-assess the level of dirt and determine the amount of detergent needed. The company is also working on designing an oven with an integrated camera to watch the cooking process live or take a video showing the shape of the souffle, a feature especially designed for social media influencers. – ‘Deflationary Force’ – CES has also become one of the most important auto shows, with announcements from BMW, Stellantis and Sony, among others. “Gone are the days when CES was about TVs, laptops and connected home gadgets,” notes Forrester analyst Thomas Husson. “Now that software is embedded in all devices, brands are showcasing innovations in electric vehicles, robotics and applied artificial intelligence.” CTA is betting on technologies to revive the economy in the past, such as smartphones or high-speed internet. “This time, new waves of digital change will come from businesses that will beat inflation and accelerate growth,” Steve Koenig said at the conference, specifically referring to robots and automated agricultural machinery that will make factories more efficient. Gary Shapiro, president of the CTA, said technology increases productivity, thereby reducing production costs, and is therefore “a deflationary force for the global economy.” Companies will have to choose their pitches carefully as rising prices and post-pandemic glut reduce consumer spending. The CTA estimates that revenues from the US technology sector (automobiles, TVs, mobile apps, etc.) will fall to $485 billion in 2023, compared to $512 billion in 2021, a record year. “The coming recession and inflation will weigh heavily on household budgets, but tech industry revenues will remain roughly $50 billion above previous figures,” the organization said in a statement. “before the pandemic”. – “Bonus” people – During the health crisis, many tech companies benefited greatly from the arrests and hired with a vengeance. Last year was a year of adjustments with social plans throughout Silicon Valley. IT group Salesforce announced on Wednesday that it will cut about 10% of its workforce, or about 8,000 jobs. In the evening, e-commerce giant Amazon announced that it was cutting “just over 18,000” jobs, including in Europe. For Steve Koenig, this reality should not obscure the real problem, which is the general shortage of skilled labor. “Twenty years ago, technology was a plus for the company. Today, the bonus is people,” summarizes Steve Koenig. “Employees of former tech giants are finding jobs elsewhere because other companies need their cloud or AI skills,” said Avi Gringart, an analyst at Techsponential. For startups, “talent may be easy to find, but fundraising has become more difficult,” he points out, because of rising interest rates. The semiconductor supply chain is also a concern. Steve Koenig says, “Shipping costs are falling and delays are decreasing at ports all over the world, but you only have to look at what’s happening in China to see how bad things are. uncertain”. jud/rle/tmt

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