CEDIA 2019 is go! The CEDIA Expo has returned to Denver, Colorado this year and is once again the place to be for the home-tech industry. The exhibition is now under way at the Colorado Convention Center, running until Friday 14th September.
Make no mistake, it's a veritable festival of smart-home technology. More than 20,000 home-tech professionals are expected to descend on the exhibition, with a mixture of seminars for the pros who are looking to expand their knowledge, and product showcases for press and professionals alike to keep abreast of what’s new in the smart-home world.
If you have even a passing interest in home technology and how it's evolving, CEDIA 2019 is as much the show for you as it is for us. Now that the dust has settled on IFA, we are on the mineral-rich ground in Denver at CEDIA Expo 2019 to find out what’s coming down the track and the impact it will have on the wider world of consumer electronics...
CEDIA 2019 news and highlights
CEDIA 2019 preview
The idea of the smart home was arguably born at the CEDIA Expo. Years before voice assistants, flatscreens and the proliferation of ‘smart’ products in the wider tech industry, the Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association (CEDIA) (opens in new tab) was working together to build the future of the smart, connected home.
Formed 30 years ago this year, CEDIA held its first Expo the following year. That event brought together hundreds of tech professionals to share ideas and showcase new products as the fledgling world of custom installation took wings.
From niche beginnings centred on expensive, complete home installations, the idea of the smart home has slowly become ubiquitous, and far more accessible. Now with small, affordable devices capable of adding a degree of smart to any system, anyone can dip a toe into the install world. And you don't need deep pockets in order to do so.
This all serves to make the CEDIA Expo, the home-tech industry’s foremost event, that much more important – and that’s why we’re on the ground in Denver, Colorado to see the latest on what’s coming next in the world of the connected home.
Even AV purists should take heed, as your next piece of kit is sure to be influenced by the home-tech industry in one way or another. From voice control to HDMI-CEC, multi-room functionality to the latest in display technology, the knock-on effect is hard to overstate.
So what can we expect to see this year? For starters, more than 20,000 attendees and over 500 exhibitors, if last year’s conference was anything to go by. The big-hitters arrived in force last year, with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant making their presence felt, and the connected home industry seeing how best they can utilise these increasingly popular, entry-level devices. Expect more mainstream favourites, such as Ring (opens in new tab) and Nest (opens in new tab), to stretch their connected tentacles on to more and more stands.
When it comes to audio, expect Dolby Atmos and DTS:X to take centre stage. Last year a whole host of Atmos AV electronics were joined by speakers of all shapes, sizes and even colours, catering to every customer’s possible whim (as well as every possible room size).
Subwoofers from Klipsch (pictured, above) were joined by innovative speakers from Dynaudio, JBL and Legacy Audio, among many others, giving punters plenty to choose from when it comes to filling a home cinema room, while MQA and high-resolution audio are sure to be buzzwords on some audio stands.
When it comes to displays, we’re looking forward to seeing the latest technology developments across the board with Dolby Vision and HDR sure to be a focus. Expect innovative screen designs, too, so we’ll look out for LG Display, Samsung and others showing off everything from rollable screens to transparent displays, and both 4K and 8K screens.
There will plenty of projectors, too – very much welcome when their presence in the consumer world is dwindling. Last year, Optoma showcased a 4K HDR LED projector (pictured above) and we’re looking to see more big-screen action from the likes of SIM 2 at this year’s expo.
And, of course, there are huge swathes of the showfloor that, while one step removed from what we at What Hi-Fi? normally cover, will have an impact on our world. Working more closely with the design and construction industries is seen as crucial for custom installers, and so there’s a special area for that too.
Expect smart lighting, Internet of Things connectivity and, of course, plenty of practical products for installers. Outdoor equipment and multi-room are sure to be popular themes, too.
With plenty of familiar and unfamiliar names sure to be at CEDIA Expo 2019, we’re looking forward to reporting back on everything that catches our eye. Don't miss it!