The consumer tech PR trends to watch for 2022 are exciting and combine other macro trends impacting emerging brands’ PR this year. This year, for the first time in two years, consumer tech companies gathered to show off their latest innovations at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
Perhaps it was the pent-up demand, perhaps it was the changes to our lives since the pandemic started, perhaps it was just that technology is ramping up faster than ever before, but the consumer tech PR trends to watch for 2022 are exciting.
Consumer Robots for Real
Robots, once the domain of government-grade applications only are becoming a reality in our homes. Consumer robots for everything from home tasks and chores like pool cleaning and vacuuming, STEM education for kids, to emotional support pets that are easily cared for, consumer robots are finally here.
While the Jetson age doesn’t look quite the way we thought it would, in some ways it’s better because many of these consumer robots are utilizing AI to do their jobs more efficiently. This combination of robots and AI means robots will better integrate into our daily lives. But the physical world isn’t the only place where we will interact with robots.
Consumers will start interacting with robots more frequently as drones or uncrewed vehicles make their way onto our sidewalks for delivery of everything from food to medical prescriptions. Robots will soon be delivering food in restaurants and even mixing your drink at the bar.
While journalists are deeply familiar with some robots, AI-driven demonstrations are sure to catch the eye of media outlets throughout 2022.
No consumer tech trends piece would be complete without mention of the Metaverse. While the depth of the cultural catalyst of the metaverse is yet to be written, we know the future will include a digital and virtual world that’s more interactive than the social media world we know no.
But what’s new, is the way robots will bridge the gap between our physical world and our digital world, for example, what Euisun Chung of Hyundai Motor Group is calling “metamobility” where robots will perform tasks for people who aren’t physically there.
Naturally, the expansion of the metaverse will be dependent on processing power and affordable hardware, but if CES 2022 is any indication, it won’t be long before those two items catch up to the idea of the Metaverse.
With the new .metaverse domain name, major consumer brands like Coca-Cola, McDonalds, and P&G are already staking out their metaverse presence.
Some estimates have the metaverse marketplace growing to $800 trillion. While that seems pretty extreme, between physical products and blockchain technologies and non-fungible tokens, the metaverse could indeed be an entirely new consumer tech economy.
Consumer Tech Trends Turn to Mental Health
According to the Pew Research Center, about one-fifth of adults are experiencing high levels of psychological distress. From emotional support wearables to digital therapeutics, tech is turning to home health and mental health for the latest innovations. Some wearables are predicting stress, others are helping address stress and anxiety. From soothing sounds to induce deep relaxation to mobile games that reduce stress, wearables are becoming more communicative, predictive, and meditative.
Also new is the connectivity to our medical professionals along with reducing costs for delivery of healthcare that democratizes access.
Anyone who has suffered from chronic sleeplessness can attest to sleep’s importance on mental health. Smart mattresses to the rescue. From self-adjusting mattresses that prevent snoring to self-regulating temperature mattresses, tech has taken over your sleep cycle, and given consumers a new way to improve mental and physical help.
Consumer Tech and Purpose-Driven Initiatives
Consumer tech PR will increasingly include stories about social, cultural, or environmental impact.
“Technology-driven by purpose will change the world,” says Deborah Wahl, Global CMO for GM. Indeed, purpose-driven initiatives are as critical to consumer tech brands as they are to any other consumer product.
Indeed, one of the biggest consumer technology trends is how cars will adapt to the environmental demands of the future.
Sustainability and tech are inextricably connected. From solar-powered batteries for cars and homes, to the reduction of single-use plastics, saving the world is on the mind of consumers, and technologists alike. Consumer technology products, a huge contributor to plastic waste, will soon be comprised of more recycled ocean-bound plastics.
Additional innovations will save water and electricity through newly developed systems that will be increasingly popular. Innovations that save water by cleaning, disinfecting, and drying drinking glasses in 10 seconds with .6 ounces of water will empower consumers to take better control of their water usage.