FeaturesTech Talks

In Conversation With Gary Shapiro (President & CEO – CTA) & Kaushal Nevrekar (EVP & CMO Reliance Digital)

In Conversation Gary Shapiro (President & Ceo - Consumer Technology Association), Kaushal Nevrekar (Evp & Cmo Reliance Digital) With Ramesh Somani (Chief-editor & Ceo - Exhibit Group)
In Conversation Gary Shapiro (President & Ceo - Consumer Technology Association), Kaushal Nevrekar (Evp & Cmo Reliance Digital) With Ramesh Somani (Chief-editor & Ceo - Exhibit Group)

Like each year, Ramesh Somani in an exclusive conversation with the main-men, Gary Shapiro, and Kaushal Nevrekar to ponder over the massive and enthralling world of tech at CES 2020. The outcome of the conversation was great insights about the future.

Ramesh Somani: A lot has happened since we last spoke! CES only seems to get bigger, better and more innovatively advanced every year. What do you think is driving this progress?
Gary Shapiro: It has changed so much since the last year and is rising to a new level, reflecting technology and innovation as a whole. The innovation of travel technology has evolved and we have a major airline, Delta, showing how it is changing with the growing times. Along with the robotics, travel and tourism area, the personal health and the mobility sector has continued to grow as well. We have seen drones that go around cities, cars that have turned into helicopters, the whole shift towards electrification of vehicles and self-driving. We have seen businesses reaching across industries that came together and that’s where the world is gathering, where different verticals come together with cross-license and brands.

RS: Reliance Digital stands for personalising technology how do you think CES is adding value to the same?
Kaushal Nevrekar: It is not just about technology or innovation, it’s a culmination of everything that is converging into technology and going smart, from foldable screens, televisions to tablets, the potential of all these devices is phenomenal. I can’t really wait to see the potential rollout at the stores for our consumers.
I believe that this decade is about experiences going beyond products. Technology is helping healthcare get better, be more affordable, and getting deployed much faster. Not just healthcare, but every technology that you see at CES is closely related to all the leading brands. We define the consumer journey for a particular technology of a particular product and work on defining the right consumer experience.

RS: CES, as we know, is a global stage for innovation and every year there are a few that take it away. What do you think CES 2020 is going to be remembered for?
GS: It would be remembered for the major jump in the health and in the mobility sector and even in the policy. One of the things we’ve put this year on is the high profile show adding up with the level of senior leaders from around the world.

RS: Technology is seeping into every and all aspects of our lifestyle. What spheres do you think CES 2020 has expanded in which could change a lot of perspectives, or even lives as a matter of fact?
GS: The growth of self-driving cars is what the world needs. That’s the progress we see since it’s costing lives. The quicker we get to self-driving, the more lives will be saved which will also empower older and the disabled people.

RS: Over the years, how brands perceived India for global launches?
KN: India has changed dramatically in the last couple of years. It’s no more an afterthought for most of the brands. All the brands now look at a simultaneous launch of their global product and include India in their launches. I’m excited to see technology like artificial intelligence, healthcare, and transportation to grow in India soon.

RS: Are there any areas where the integration of technology interests you profoundly? Something that excites you on a personal level?
GS: Definitely one thing that is happening is that the world is shifting to 5G and for a lot of people, it will be a leap from 2G or 3G to 5G. Another ingredient that’s huge is artificial intelligence that will allow predictive behaviour, allowing people to analyze their health better and quicker. Without having a physical doctor there, we could get information on our devices and act on it, which is the need of the hour because of the global shortage of trained doctors. There are also things like AR, VR, XR which is growing quickly. Certainly, we’re just at the beginning of robotics, whether it’s personal robotics or factory. You could use technology in all sorts of ways, whether with pulses or very focused ultrasound or all sorts of treatments. There are alternatives that are cheaper than non-intrusive treatments with new technologies.
KN: As I said it’s about the experience and not the product. With everything becoming smart, it’s all about personalization. The way I would use my television is dramatically different from how my daughter would. To get to analyze the experience of technology is just phenomenal. I’m just amazed to see how experiences are given when technology and data are correlated. So that’s what I am going to take from it, experiences are personal.

RS: In CES 2020, personalisation is the key focus area. Your views?
GS: Yes, personalisation is something that drives technology. From smartphones to smartwatches, computers to coffee makers, each and every aspect of tech can now be personalised as per the taste of an individual and their preferences. We believe that personalisation will play a major role, especially when it comes to gadgets and experiences. One can fine-tune an application or gadget to function according to his/her preferences and eventually, expect the users to get even better personal experiences.

RS: With new tech being showcased each year at CES how do you think India will adapt to this new-age technology?
KN: India is already riding the tech wave and expect this to go bigger with the start of 2020. While a quick adaptation of technologies might take time, the overall affordability and buying capacity of the people has increased. This show positive growth as more and more people are accepting and adapting technology in their lives for a better overall living.



Ramesh Somani
An entrepreneur with a mind of his own, who is always confused between his passion for tech or automobiles. Hence he is the founder of Exhibit group and Publisher & Chief Editor of BBC Topgear India.

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