CES 2022 kicks off in Las Vegas amid COVID-19 surge

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Visitors are seen at the venue of the 2022 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, the United States, Jan. 4, 2022. [Photo/Xinhua]

The 2022 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) kicked off in the U.S. city of Las Vegas on Wednesday amid another surge of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The world's premier tech show, scheduled from Jan. 5 to 7, drew more than 2,300 exhibitors, including 800 startups, as well as hundreds of thought leaders.

Attendees and media representatives from nearly 160 countries have registered their participation at CES 2022, according to the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), organizer of the CES.

Digital health is expected to be a hot topic at this year's show as COVID-19 still poses severe threat to the world.

More than 100 health companies have joined the show, featuring the latest health technologies including remote patient diagnostics and monitoring, digital therapeutics, mental wellness, wearables and telehealth services.

The show will also feature a plethora of exhibitors advancing two of the most compelling technology megatrends of the future, intelligent automation and the evolution of the metaverse, according to the CTA.

Companies will also showcase the latest in digital health, food tech, automotive tech, gaming, smart home and more.

"At CES 2022 this week, we will be immersed in the innovation that will reshape our societies and solve fundamental human challenges in the decades to come," said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of CTA, on Wednesday.

"With innovations in AI, digital health, transportation, drones, smart cities, digital assets, space tech and more - these technologies are making us better - improving what we as human beings are capable of doing," he said.

The U.S. consumer technology industry is projected to generate over 505 billion U.S. dollars in retail sales revenue for the first time ever in 2022, according to the CTA.

The projection represents a 2.8 percent revenue increase from 2021's impressive 9.6 percent growth over 2020.

The CES 2022 is held both in person and virtually. Organizers have shortened the in-person event by one day, ending on Friday instead of Saturday.

A digital stream of the event will give access to more than 50 keynote sessions for those choosing not to travel to Las Vegas.

The CTA has taken enhanced health measures in face of the surge of COVID-19 cases. Full vaccination is required for all participants and mask wearing is compulsory indoors.

All badge holders have been given a complimentary antigen self-test kit. The CTA encourages attendees to test less than 24 hours before entering a venue.

For more than 50 years, CES has been a global stage for innovation.

The first CES was held in 1967, with 250 exhibitors and 17,500 attendees in New York City. Up to now, CES has grown by more than 10-fold and encompasses both traditional and non-traditional tech industries.

Last year, the CES was held online, the first-ever all-digital show in its 50-plus-year history.

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