Tyler Suiters

Hey, hey, everybody. With the Consumer Technology Association, I'm Tyler Suiters. We are the owners and the producers of CES, the largest, the most influential tech event, in the world. And we are here to help you get CES Ready. The show is almost upon us, January 7th through the 10th, 2020, as always, in Las Vegas. And today a broad, wide ranging conversation about all things CES. The show is right around the corner, remember.

Tyler Suiters

Now, a little bit of a scene setter for you. More than 60% of the Fortune Global 500 companies are at CES, and about two thirds of Fortune 500 companies, attend the show as well. Now, some more hard numbers. That total for CES 20, more than 4,500 exhibiting companies alone, and that includes more than 1200 startups. So today a conversation with the leaders of CES and the Consumer Technology Association, CTA, about how technology is changing our lives for the better, both locally, and on a global scale, and how CES will demonstrate that.

Tyler Suiters

Also, what's new in 2020, and some of the tech trends you can expect to see as you're navigating the show. Also, a dive into the growing areas, including major themes, like sea space, and the intersection of content marketing, entertainment and media, digital health, the way we are better monitoring our own wellness and getting better outcomes, working with our caregivers and doctors. Also, smart cities, changing and improving the way we live, both our everyday lives, and at home. Also, a conversation with one exhibitor that is really turning heads at CES, at least in terms of how CES 2019 went. That is Bell. You know them most likely as a helicopter company, but there is so much more about the future of transportation that Bell is talking about. All of that is on this special edition of CES Tech Talk.

Tyler Suiters                      

With us now is Karen Chupka, the Executive Vice President of CES. Karen, thank you.

Karen Chupka                   

Thank you, Tyler.

Tyler Suiters                      

Also, Gary Shapiro, who is the President and CEO of the Consumer Technology Association. Gary, as always, great to have you with us.

Gary Shapiro                     

As always, it's great to be here and I'm so excited to be here with Karen and you. I feel like I've hit the jackpot.

Tyler Suiters                      

New decade, new show. What's new for CES in 2020?

Karen Chupka                   

Well we have a couple of great new things this year. First off, one of our new areas that we're focusing on for CES 2020, is travel and tourism. You may have noticed that we have announced Delta is one of our keynoters this year. And partly... Part of the reason that we're looking at this category is because there is a lot of tech that's coming into play to help the consumer experience for how they plan their travel, and then how they experience travel. So everything from booking, to actually getting on airplanes or cruise ships, and then ultimately getting to their destination. And then we also have a couple of new programs that we're launching in our conference program.

Karen Chupka                   

So, for one area that we're focusing on this year is a track on diversity for all. And so it's basically just looking at diverse voices, and how bringing diverse voices into community can help improve companies and improve technology, as far as what the future will bring to us.

Karen Chupka                   

And another program that we're working with is actually with the World Bank and it's focusing on tech for good. And so in this area, we're actually looking at, in some instances, resilient products. So products that help you strive and thrive in the event of a disaster. And these are just some of the new areas that we'll be focusing on for CES 2020

Tyler Suiters                      

Well you mentioned the World Bank, Karen. And Gary, we're talking about tech changing our lives for the better, really on a global scale. And CES 2020 is demonstrating that far and wide.

Gary Shapiro                     

Well Tyler, you mentioned that we are in a new decade, and that's kicking off the show. The show, every year, kicks off the year in a very positive way. We want to kick off the decade in a positive way. And what we're seeing more and more, if you want to go back compared to 10 years, we're seeing technology is starting to solve some of the most fundamental problems in the world. We're seeing it in transportation. We'll see it at CES, obviously, with electric cars and steps towards self-driving, all sorts of announcements coming.

Gary Shapiro                     

And we see it in the healthcare area. Health tech making us healthier, live longer, more enjoyable, safer lives. Technology, solving some of the problems that maybe surgery or drugs only, were able to help attack 10 years ago. And as we move forward into the next decade, we're seeing a lot of good things happen. But we're also seeing important discussions occurring, around privacy, for example, around artificial intelligence, and self-driving, around jobs.

Gary Shapiro                     

All these are important things, because technology is affecting all of these. And it's important that we get government into the equation. And we're doing that at CES, with government leaders from around the world, with important discussions. One of the most important discussions, I think, will occur at CES, where we have the top privacy officers at Facebook, at Apple from the Federal Trade Commission, discussing in the same panel where we should be going. Because there's a government appropriate role, to help set the ground rules, or the safeguards, so that we can move forward as an industry, be innovative, and solve the most fundamental problems humans have.

Tyler Suiters                      

So two topics jump to mind when we're talking about this. One on the global scale, the idea of resilience, right? The other is a bit more local or urbanized, which is smart cities. Two distinct topics, but really closely linked, right? As far as how tech is changing our lives, how it's improving both proactively how we live, but also reactively, in the case of disaster, Karen.

Karen Chupka                   

Yeah, absolutely. And it's actually one of the areas... One of the reasons that we have them located next to each other at the show floor, because the stories are very intertwined. And we're seeing it how technologies are changing cities for the better. Everything from energy management, to emergency management, as well as just connected transportation. So that is a very large story for us at CES is just the whole smart city experience.

Karen Chupka                   

And you know, we're also seeing even just from a vehicle side, that the story is changing from a driverless car into more transportation. So things like short distance transportation, but also human drones, and other ways of getting around. In fact, you will see a flying car at CES. Let's see, yes, 2020. So, those things are kind of related. And then as a result of that, if you're putting all this technology into cities, then you have to have redundancies, and you have to have ways that you can continue to function in the event that something does go wrong.

Tyler Suiters                      

Mm-hmm (affirmative). And that discussion, Gary, that you touched on. Privacy is one element, but there are so many more, that if it's becoming more and more of our lives, not just in our homes and devices we own, but how we engage and interact, and how we drive, how we walk, where we work. The idea of smart cities means industry and government have to work hand in hand, right? This shouldn't be a reactive effort. And this is where the conversation takes place.

Gary Shapiro                     

Absolutely. I mean if you think about what's going on globally, we're moving into cities. Two thirds of us will live in cities in just a few years, where it used to be the opposite. And we're also getting older, and there's fewer people to take care of the people that are getting older. Technology comes into play there.

Gary Shapiro                     

And with smart cities what we're thinking about, is how do you provision a city? How do you make it green, and cut down on the use of energy in the city? How do you provision it with food, with water? How do you get protection? How do you move people around? How do you educate people? And technology, actually with this, what you see at CES, solves all these problems. And government is, of course, playing an important role. They run in cities around the world, and we're increasingly seeing government officials from around the world using CES for inspiration.

Gary Shapiro                     

Just the way we see corporate executives coming. Because one of the major trains, again from 10 years ago, that didn't exist, is everyone wants to be innovative, they want to be a tech company. And they recognize at the CEO level, that they have to go across, outside their vertical, and see what else is going on, and form the type of deals that are very important in relationships that will make their company grow, or actually just stay in business. Because no one company could exist by itself anymore. It's impossible.

Gary Shapiro                     

So everyone's cutting deals, they're going outside their vertical. They're being innovative, they're doing different things, and they're using CES as a meeting place for that, which has changed. And we're doing the backdrop of major changes in technology.

Gary Shapiro                     

I mean CES... One of the big stories at CES is 5G, for example. It's an ingredient technology. It's so important. Every 10 years, every turn of the decade, there has been a new G, since 1980. And 5G promises so much more, and you're going to see that throughout the show, in all sorts of different use cases, in ways a lot of businesses assume 5G is coming, and it'll drive us forward for the next 10 years.

Tyler Suiters                      

Mm-hmm (affirmative). On that note, Karen, just within the last five to seven years, CES has evolved from an overall narrative of being the home of the internet of things. What we're seeing now, in the 2020s, and expect to see, and that is really the intelligence of things.

Tyler Suiters                      

So when you look at the technology trends across categories, Gary mentions 5G, that's certainly one. But along those same lines of the intelligence, we're talking about AI, data and analytics, and I think I would put blockchain in there as well, perhaps.

Karen Chupka                   

Blockchain, and also voice. I mean voice is also a pretty strong component of CES, and products nowadays. And yes, I mean AI is playing a role across every category at the show. You know, it's kind of an area... There's a specific AI area at the show. But then we're also seeing how applications are rolling out in healthcare and in other vertical industries as well. So it's one of those driving factors that's kind of across all elements of the show.

Karen Chupka                   

And it's interesting, cause you mentioned this decade. I mean, the thing that's also interesting about CES, is that we have over 4,500 companies coming to CES now for CES 2020, and they're coming from all over the world. And there's no one place that you're going to get to see so much technology, so many different industries represented. And actually now, so many companies that aren't traditional tech companies coming to the show floor as well.

Tyler Suiters                      

Yeah. On that note, Gary, one of, at least in my mind, the most iconic images of CES 2019 was the John Deere exhibition space at CES. And the enormous agricultural machinery that they had in place. It combines AI, it combines self-driving vehicles and other elements that drive efficiency and utility. One of the things I've heard you say again and again, is that every company today is, or needs to be, a tech company. And so yeah, it shows that more and more.

Gary Shapiro                     

Absolutely. We've been saying that for a long time, and CES this will prove it. And we've seen nontraditional companies coming in previous years. You've mentioned like Bell, and certainly John Deere. Now we're seeing Delta, and P and G, and so many others that are coming there, because they... First, a lot of executives from other companies, of course, are there, for inspiration, for deals, just to know where the future is going. But now coming in saying, "We want a presence here. We want to make a statement, to show the world that we are focusing on technology which is distinguishing us from our competitors." And they're also out there saying, "We are open to business. We want to cut deals with you, you and you. We want you to come to us." And that's an invitation.

Gary Shapiro                     

What's really interesting, and the other side of that, though, is with these big companies position themselves, the other side is the new companies, the Eureka Park, where we have almost 1300 startups. And what we're seeing, is the big companies are going there, to cut deals, to invest, to be a customer, to provide mentorship, along with the investment community, the media and others.

Gary Shapiro                     

So, CES really is... We say we own CES. We know we don't own CES. The industry, the future, owns CES. It is one place in the world, that business people, media, investors and others can come, and they can focus on the possibility of the future, in terms of solving our biggest problem.

Tyler Suiters                      

Mm-hmm (affirmative). We talked about data earlier. Karen, I know you personally are data-driven, in terms of being in the business sector, and the decisions you make. Let's look at some of the objective elements of CES 2020. Where's the real growth you're seeing, especially in the heart of the tech sector right now?

Karen Chupka                   

You know, I think there's a couple of key areas where we're continuing to see growth. And one of them is, we talked about a little bit earlier today, which is healthcare. You know, healthcare is one of our fast growing categories and there's a lot of new technologies basically coming out in that area.

Karen Chupka                   

So, another area that is growing, and coincidentally we talked about also, is smart cities. We're seeing a growth year over year on that category. Another category that is just a strong category at CES, and continues each year to have every major player there, is in vehicle and transportation, you know, driverless car. But then like I had mentioned earlier, we're also seeing other forms of transportation coming in to help tell that story. And so that's another area that's strong at the show.

Tyler Suiters                      

All right, Karen, what about some of the other areas of growth, of excitement, that you see at the show that maybe are what we would consider nontraditional tech spaces?

Karen Chupka                   

Sure. Actually one of our really... Another growing area that I didn't mention earlier is an area called C Space... And it is a place that focuses on advertising, branding, content and entertainment, and this is one of our growth areas. It's kind of a little bit different, in a sense that there are some experiential displays over there. And then a lot of the spaces really dedicated to private meetings, because companies come there to showcase what their new digital platforms are for the year. But then we also have a lot of the streaming companies there. So we have like Hulu, NBC, Universal, Pandora, social media companies.

Karen Chupka                   

It's really just become a really big buzz and hub of the show. And I actually... One of the things that we've done this year also, is we've expanded that story to include sports technology. And so now, at the C Space area, located next to it, is an area that's also focused on how technology is influencing the sports world. So covering everything from you know, e-gaming, to NFL, to Formula One racing, to looking at how it's changing the fan experience, the athletic... How athletes are using technology to better measure their performance, and basically helping with brand engagement.

Karen Chupka                   

So it's really a kind of a dynamic, complete, distinctly different feel part of the show, but a fast growing and exciting part of the show.

Tyler Suiters                      

All right. I'm going to tap you both for pro tips on navigating CES. Gary, start with you. I hear you say, again and again, that Eureka Park is one of your favorite areas of discovery. How do you get there, and visit it, and learn, and engage effectively, among all those startups?

Gary Shapiro                     

Well, if want to engage the whole show, obviously you download our app, which has so much in there, and you plan ahead, and you have comfortable shoes and drink plenty of water and not that much alcohol. But Eureka Park is, in a sense, an exception. It's actually, almost,... A lot of serendipity is involved. You have to walk up and down the aisles quickly, and whatever attracts you, you just stop and start engaging. But there's so many companies. There are 1300. You can't actually visit every booth. And obviously you can't even visit them the rest of the CES. So you have to be careful.

Gary Shapiro                     

For the rest of the things, you should experience some things that are out of your comfort zone. You should be open to the new at CES, because that is where innovation will occur. That's where new relationships will occur. You should use every opportunity from cab lines, on down to bus, to walking around, to ask questions, be friendly.

Gary Shapiro                     

Everyone there wants to get something out of the experience, which means meeting new people, seeing new products and services, being inspired and walking away with like a thousand different ideas for the whole year. Which is what we hear from journalists, we hear from startups, we hear from people who go there. It is a four day experience, which carries with you, for at least six months, and gives you a lot of material to go on. And it's just... You have to be aware and open to new things to really get the most of it.

Tyler Suiters                      

Two elements out of that, Karen to pull out for you and get your pro tip. One is, the amount of meetings and meaningful engagements and conversations you can have in a four day period during CES. The other is, planning ahead, like Gary said. Getting your game plan together, downloading the app, getting a strategy in place, because there is some serendipity but you want to be efficient as well.

Karen Chupka                   

Absolutely. And we know that an average CES attendee will have something like 33 meetings scheduled during the course of the week of CES. But it's actually interesting, cause a lot of times even before CES opens, I'll run into somebody on a floor and help them find where their next location or help give them some directions and I'll say, "Hey, what are you here for? How's the event been, even though it hasn't started?" And it's funny how many people have said, "It's amazing. I came here for a meeting that's happening tomorrow, but I accidentally bumped into this person and I made a deal that I would have never imagined could have happened. And the show hasn't even started. It's been an awesome show." And I think that kind of ties into the serendipity part that Gary talks about.

Gary Shapiro                     

And let me jump in, Karen. If you could do one thing, it's to plan your days. So you try to spend a day in each facility. That way you're not moving around the city. We have, of course, plenty of transportation and buses you should look into, but to the extent you want to use your time the best. There are conferences in different facilities, there are exhibits in different facilities. If you look at the conferences that you want to go to, and plan your meetings in that facility, you'll have a much more efficient, you'll see a lot more, you'll get a lot more done and you'll put it on just as much shoe leather walking around. Get those steps in.

Tyler Suiters                      

Yeah, a higher efficiency, more opportunity, right? Final question for you both. CES 2020 in one word. Karen?

Karen Chupka                   

Amazing.

Tyler Suiters                      

Gary?

Gary Shapiro                     

Fabulosus.

Tyler Suiters                      

All right, fair enough. Karen Chupka, Executive Vice President of CES. Gary Shapiro, President and CEO of CTA. As always, a fabulous conversation. We're on the eve of CES. Can't wait to see what's ahead.

Karen Chupka                   

Thank you.

Gary Shapiro                     

Thank you, Tyler. Thanks. Great.

Karen Chupka                   

Bye.

Tyler Suiters                      

With us today is Michael Thacker. He is EVP of Technology and Innovation at Bell, and a veteran of the CES Tech Talk podcast. Michael, great to have you back with us. Thanks for joining us today.

Michael Thacker              

Great to be back.

Tyler Suiters                      

This time last year, we were talking about Bell's initial presence at CES, and what you expected in this foray into the forefront of connected technology, and the future of transportation, and where innovation was leading Bell. All right. Here you are, one year later. Are you far enough removed from CES 2019 to reflect on all that it was and all it meant to Bell?

Michael Thacker              

No, I think we absolutely are. You know, our entree in 2018 was really a reintroduction of Bell to the world, as a technology and mobility company. And last year was an expansion of that, where we had the opportunity to bring together an all-star lineup of technologists, to talk about how an air taxi fits into a multimodal mobility system. We introduced the Nexus, and had a great opportunity to talk about how the ecosystem would actually work. It was all that we talked about last year, and more, in terms of both the opportunity to engage with both the ground autonomy and smart city communities that were around us, but also with the larger ecosystem of the public and the cities where these vehicles are going to be flying.

Tyler Suiters                      

What was the reaction you saw from a first-person perspective as attendees came by your booth and saw clearly one of the most eye catching displays of innovation across the entire show in 2019, the Quad Copter, right? Also, I should say AKA the Bat Copter, as I heard a lot of people refer to it. Again, just so eye catching, so sharp, midnight black as well. I mean, there was just so much to see, and experience, even before you got to the booth.

Michael Thacker              

So obviously, we garnered a lot of attention. The booth was full from the firing gun, till the end of the show, with people getting a look at the Nexus and seeing how it could impact their lives, how it would work in the cities that they live in. We had people from all walks of life coming through, and obviously got a great reaction of people seeing what it would really take. Not a cartoon, not something that may or may not work, but something that shows the reality of what it takes to actually lift five people through the air across the city. I think people appreciated the reality of it, the size of it, and what it could mean for them.

Tyler Suiters                      

Michael, you've been working on this project for so many years now. Did it do anything to bring the idea even closer to life for you? That you're actually engaging with potential customers, potential passengers, hearing their feedback, their questions, their excitement for what this presents.

Michael Thacker              

Absolutely. You know, it definitely took the conversation forward, as we were able to engage with many different communities, potential customers, and obviously the public that would be riding on the aircraft; to get feedback on what felt good, areas that we can improve. A lot of questions around how the vehicle would work in a city. And frankly, when you come to our booth this year, you're going to see the next step in that conversation, where we really talk about the city ecosystem that's going to be needed to have the entire system work and have it transition seamlessly from the rest of the mobility system within a city. So you'll see our mobility operating system in action, with Nexus flying around Nexus City. And it's going to be an exciting way to move the conversation forward, yet another step, to understand the infrastructure needs, whether that's the Verti Port, the electric power infrastructure, the fleet management system, all the things that we're going to need to actually take these aircraft, and bring them to the flying public.

Tyler Suiters                      

So before we dive into what's ahead for Bell Helicopter at CES 2020, let's talk about that year in between the last show and the upcoming show, Michael, and what you have learned as a company. And let's start with infrastructure, right? It's still, to some degree, theoretical, but you must know exponentially more, a year later, after all of this public feedback and engagement.

Michael Thacker              

We absolutely do in terms of what it's going to take to be able to move about the cities. We've also advanced in terms of technology for the aircraft itself, and you'll see that in this year's booth as well, as we really unlock the urban mission, with a full electric configuration. You'll remember that last year we showed a hybrid configuration, which unlocks additional range and capability for city to city type transportation. This year, you're going to see a view of what it really would look like for within the city transportation. How that changes the configuration to make it more efficient, to make it even quieter and to make it really work well within those constraints of infrastructure, of power, and of how it can interact with the rest of the city.

Tyler Suiters                      

A bit of a more nebulous angle on the infrastructure issue. That is the idea of smart cities. How quickly is the public adapting to them in your view, and how quickly are they coming to life around the US, specifically, in what you've seen?

Michael Thacker              

So, I think there are really two answers to that question. In terms of the community's adapting to them, I think that's happening relatively rapidly, in terms of the items that are available. As more modes of transportation become available, whether it's ride sharing, or scooters or those things, people are using those as they're available and using them to make their life more convenient, more livable.

Michael Thacker              

In terms of the, how soon will we see a real implementation of a fully thought out smart city? That takes a little bit longer, in the sense that, infrastructure projects to change mobility hubs, to create new systems, whether that be on the ground or in the air, does take a bit of time. And that's why it's really important for us to have the conversation now, about what are the requirements for a Verti Port? What are the requirements for power? For space? And how do you turn that, not just into a mobility hub, but to an economic hub with shopping, with living, with work, for people within those communities? And how do you make it a driver for the cities of further growth and wellbeing for everybody involved.

Michael Thacker              

And I think that piece is going to take some years to develop, because the planning for those is really going on right now. And that's why we need to make sure that what we're talking about here with Nexus, gets incorporated into those plans, so we can take advantage of that when they come to be.

Tyler Suiters                      

Well, and you are far from the only innovative tech company that is moving in this direction and pushing for what is possible for smart cities. More partnership growth at Bell Helicopter, Michael? Are you finding more and more private sector partners who share this vision, or want to be a part of the supportive network, here?

Michael Thacker              

No, absolutely, we have. You know, obviously in 2019, we brought partners from primarily the aviation space, along with a couple of startups in electric technology, to talk about what we needed to do from a technology standpoint to make the aircraft work within the system. This year you're going to see us with partners who are looking at the larger system. And frankly, Consumer Electronic Show has been a great place for us to engage with technology community, whether it's the digital infrastructure behind what we're doing, or the smart cities themselves, and really be able to engage with people about how we make it all tie together.

Tyler Suiters                      

So turning now to 2020, and the show. You have a very high bar to clear based... Let's be honest Michael, based on what Bell presented at 2019. You certainly have the advantage of being on attendees maps, right? I think even if you're not in the smart cities space, or the transportation technology space, Bell is somewhere you want to go. It's a bit of a destination booth, based on last year. So how do you leverage that and how, if it's even possible, do you top it in 2020?

Michael Thacker              

Well we appreciate that. Obviously we garnered a lot of attention and that was great for Bell. I think it was great for CES. I think it was great for the conversation around mobility. And we absolutely intend to move the conversation forward and go beyond even what we shared last year.

Michael Thacker              

So when you come to the Bell booth this year, you will be able to engage in what a smart city environment would look like. You'll be able to get within an entire ecosystem in Nexus City, and see both the new Nexus 4EX, four ducted, full electric aircraft, flying about that city, as well as the autonomous pod transport, moving cargo goods. Things like critical medical transport. And behind all that is our mobility operating system, that ties it all together and make sure that it works seamlessly, is monitored for health and safety, and is actively engaged throughout the entire process. And you'll be able to go right into that, and see it for yourself, and see what it's going to look like. In addition to that, you'll see the next member of the Nexus family, in the Nexus 4EX alive and in view, just like the six duct Nexus was last year.

Tyler Suiters                      

Mm-hmm (affirmative). As a longtime tech innovator personally, and a career long engineer, Michael, how do you approach CES? I mean, you have your quote unquote day job, we'll call the [inaudible 00 28 15]. You've got to be in place and engaging for so many hours a day. But, what do you do with the time you get that you're not mandated to be there, or have to be at the booth engaging with clients and customers? Where do you go? What do you usually seek out?

Michael Thacker              

Well, CES is a smorgasbord of great ideas, that there is a tremendous amount to see. I have a few particular interests of my own, in addition to scouting out who is doing things that would be interesting to partner with Bell, and making sure that we make those connections. You know, I definitely go through all of the mobility space, and the smart city space, as we discussed. But I also look at the accessibility space. It's an area of interest to me, to make sure that we are looking at how do we make what we do at Bell accessible to as many people as possible, no matter what their abilities are. And so I look at what's going on there. I have some personal reasons for doing that as well.

Michael Thacker              

I also have a real interest in music. And so I usually go to some of the areas with audio activity, and catch up on what's the latest there and what I can look forward to bringing into my own home.

Tyler Suiters                      

So one area in which you have to top the metric you said, in 2019, is in celebrity appearances at the booth. Kanye West was at the booth and apparently spent a fair amount time there. That's got to be one of the more surreal moments, when you're dealing with so many B2B customers and clients and conversations. And then you have a music mogul stop by and say, "Hey, what's this? It looks cool."

Michael Thacker              

You know, that was an amazing moment. And, like I say, not just a music mogul, but somebody who really influences culture, and people's thoughts, and people's views of what is cool and real. And so to have him spend as much time as he did was amazing. It was a great opportunity for the team, and a great opportunity for Bell, so we really appreciated that. And you tell me, I'm not sure how to top that, but if there's a way to do it, we're going to make it happen.

Tyler Suiters                      

Well that's... Speaking candidly, Michael, that's part of the serendipity at CES. It's not just the business conversations, and the remarkable deals that get done, sometimes between vastly disparate partners, but you never know whom you're going to see. And that is a blast. Yeah.

Tyler Suiters                      

But having the Bat Copter in place, is a pretty good draw from word of mouth. Final question for you, Michael. Wrapping it all... On the business side of it. What is Bell Helicopter's strategy in and around the tech sector, and to some degree, CES? I mean, we so often say every company is or needs to be a technology company in today's marketplace. Well, Bell always has been a tech company, but now it's really becoming a connected technology company as well. So what are the years ahead mean to you?

Michael Thacker              

So, for us it really is about making those connections. We know the parts that we do well, we're growing some areas that we need to improve and position ourselves for the decades to come, but we also can't do it alone. And CES is the perfect place for us to engage with technology and business partners who can bring the entire ecosystem together. I think you'll see the next step in that at our booth in 2020, but obviously that's going to go on into the future. So, as we need to engage in things that are built on a cloud infrastructure, we're not going to be a cloud company. But we certainly need to engage with them to be able to layer on top of that the capabilities we need for the systems we need to put in place.

Michael Thacker              

We're going to be engaging with communities as they think about, how does that smart city look in the future? And it's not going to be a one size fits all, right? There's going to be different implementations for different sizes and locations of communities, and geographies, and demographics. And so we want to be there with them to be their partner in making those things become reality.

Tyler Suiters                      

Michael Thacker is EVP of Technology and Innovation at Bell. Do yourself a favor, get to North Hall, and check out the Bell Helicopter exhibit. It is eye-catching, it is memorable, and come on, how great will that be on social media, getting those pictures? And if you need to find it specifically, just go to the CES app. Download it, or check it out on your smartphone. It will show you exactly where you need to go.

Tyler Suiters                      

Michael, once again, another great conversation. Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow at CES 2020.

Michael Thacker              

I look forward to seeing you as well.

Tyler Suiters                      

All right, coming up next time on CES Tech Talk, a series of conversations with a different group of insiders at CES 2020, the media. The international outlets and journalists who are covering CES, not just in 2020, but in years past as well, and most likely for many years to come. Their takes on where the trends are heading at CES 2020. The hottest products and technologies that they've seen, and also their overall view about the driving trends. AI, 5G, blockchain, just to name a few. That's all coming up in the next several editions of CES Tech Talk.

Tyler Suiters                      

In the meantime, that does it for this episode. As always, subscribe to this podcast. You can check out all our back episodes of CES Tech Talk and also get updates about what's to come in future editions. And do yourself a favor. Download the CES 2020 app. You can play on your own agenda. You can find the speakers, and the panel and conference sessions you really want to see, even locate all the exhibitors whose newest innovations you want to see and touch and try while you're at CES 2020.

Tyler Suiters                      

And if you need more information, just go to the website, C-E-S-dot-tech. A reminder, the show itself, January 7th through the 10th, in Las Vegas. And as for the podcast, none of this would be even remotely possible without our true stars. Our Executive Producer, Tina Anthony, and our Senior Studio Engineer, John Lindsey. You all are the best in the business. I'm Tyler Suiters. Let's talk tech again, soon.

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