CES2016: Final thoughts

We came, we saw, we drooled… and finally the 2016 CES is one for the history books. Here were my big takeaways:

The big manufacturers aren’t the real story. This is more true than ever. Samsung, Intel, Sony, and the like were just going through the motions. They spent a lot of money and attracted a lot of attention, which makes that money well spent, but they were light on innovation and lacked the entertainment value of previous years.

On the other hand, the mid-size folks really shone. Big booths from DISH, TCL, VOXX, and others were much more exciting and carried a large number of new products. CES is a great show if you’re a brand with some recognition looking to get even bigger.

Yes, wearables and 3D printing are viable markets but… by moving all that stuff to the Sands there was less interest and less press.

[size=4]Everyone wants to be DJI. Drones were a big part of the story this year but really very few companies have figured out how to make money from it. DJI and Parrot are the big boys; one has the top end of the market and one has the bottom. Everyone else is trying to figure out an angle.

More importantly, and more than ever, CES belongs to the mid-size manufacturers, the anonymous Chinese concerns and the dealers who want to grow. That’s where the real excitement is, even though the general public sees very little of that.

Here’s a recap of our CES 2016 coverage:

Will DISH have a new Hopper at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show?
CES 2016: Early guesses
CES 2016: Early Preview
CES2016: What we expect
CES2016: Last minute thoughts
Podcast #149: Why CES?
Ultra HD Premium Specs
DISH unveils Hopper 3, HopperGO, blows industry’s collective mind
La Crosse Booth Tour (and some thoughts)
Introducing SureCall’s 2nd Generation EZ4G Booster!!
Slim TVs are Back, Baby
They probably wished they’d gotten the smaller booth
DISH Booth Tour
weBoost shows ‘eqo’ 
MyGica shows ATV1950 dual tuner Android TV box
One more fan’s impressions