LAS VEGAS – Every year, CES draws the tech-obsessed to gawk at fancy televisions and off-the-wall gadgets. This year, though, the conference’s long-running media sideshow is flooding onto the main stage, including two keynotes by companies vying to shape the future of TV.
Media companies and marketers long have fueled a show-behind-the-show at CES, one that has little to do with the next hot doodad. The mobs of media folks in Las Vegas may never even make it over to any of the big show floors. Instead, they’re squirreled away in hotel suite meetings or mingling at panels and parties around the Aria Resort & Casino, the epicenter of CES‘ media confab sometimes referred to as Tech South.
Meanwhile, companies seem to be rushing toward a convergence of tech and media.
On one hand, tech giants are pouring resources into becoming media heavyweights. That goes for stalwarts like Netflix, estimated to have unleashed a $15 billion budget for programming last year, as well as relative newcomers to video like Apple, which launched its in November on the back of a reported $6 billion budget to rope in some of Hollywood’s biggest stars. And of HBO-owner Time Warner — now WarnerMedia — finally made it into the clear last year.
On the other hand, traditional media players are arming themselves with tech firepower like never before. Disney launched its Netflix competitor, , in November, a culmination of its $71 billion acquisition of last year and of years spent reorienting the entire company around the service. And Comcast’s NBCUniversal is waiting in the wings to follow suit with its own streaming service, called Peacock, early this year.
CES 2017 brought the unveiling of Hulu’s live-television streaming subscription, and 2016 was marked by Netflix’s keynote reveal that it except in China. What does CES 2020 have in store? Here’s a peek at the media presence in Vegas this year.