CTA’s Gary Shapiro’s CES 2017 Keynote

LAS VEGAS—CES 2017 is well underway in Las Vegas, and Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of CTA, helped kicked off the proceedings with an opening keynote. As the industry heads into 2017, Shapiro discussed how technology can transcend industries, transform lives and foster innovation.

Here are Shapiro’s remarks as prepared for presenation:

Welcome to CES 2017 and its 50th anniversary!

That is 50 years of innovation and creating business opportunities – a half-century of introducing life-changing tech products and services to the world.

And we have so much more ahead of us!

This week you will see the world’s best known brands alongside yet-to-be-discovered startups, creating and delivering smarter, more connected products that enrich our lives and better our world.

The first CES was held in 1967 in New York, then the epicenter of the TV and hi-fi business.

The industry showcased three products: radios, televisions and phonographs.

Our choice on television was limited to three networks.

If you wanted to watch something different, you went to a movie theater.

Today, you can stream any movie, TV show or sports event you want, at any time.

And virtual, augmented and mixed reality is now creating stunning visuals and immersive experiences for consumers to enjoy.

CES 2017 is our biggest show ever, more than 2.6 million net square feet of exhibit space.

Our show includes more than 25 different product areas and every industry imaginable.

From mobile connectivity, to sports, entertainment and even travel, CES is the gathering place for all who thrive on the business of technology.

Since that first show, some 700,000 products have been introduced at CES and countless global leaders have taken this keynote stage to give the world a glimpse of the future.

The past is prologue – CES has always been, and continues to be, the best place to see innovation in consumer technology.

Walk the show floor and you can see how our industry has transformed.

Technology is much more sophisticated. More personalized. More intuitive. More impactful. And it’s connected.

We’re witnessing extraordinary advances in artificial intelligence, wireless health, robotics,

3D printing, self-driving and electric cars, AR, VR, biometrics and so much more.

Today’s innovators are working long hours and late nights to change lives for the better.

And in some cases, they’re saving lives.

Self-driving cars are a great example.

As we saw last night with the NVIDIA - Audi announcement, self driving cars will soon be a reality.

More than one million lives are lost each year in traffic-related accidents.

Self-driving cars will dramatically cut that number. 

They have the ability to be better drivers than humans because they can do and "see" things that we physically can't.

And on the way there, many new safety features, including active collision avoidance are already improving our roadways.

Look at this video in Germany where a Tesla vehicle predicted and avoided a collision.

One observer said, "No one could predict the accident but the radar did and acted by emergency breaking."

Another remarkable case is using technology to mimic how our eyes absorb information, giving the gift of sight to those with vision loss.

And 3D bio printing is being used to print tissues and organs, quickly delivering affordable prosthetics and the chance to lead a normal life for children, those wounded in accidents and soldiers who need artificial limbs.

AR and VR systems help people recover from PTSD, dementia, paralysis and other debilitating conditions.

And as NVIDIA showed us last night, AI promises to revolutionize the way we interact with our world.

AI will make smart products even smarter and more accessible.

CES is a cornucopia of innovation improving lives.

Many new and non-traditional companies are at CES 2017 – proof the show is expanding as technology touches nearly every industry and every segment of our lives.

Carnival is at CES for the first time.

You will soon see new technology that will transform the cruising and travel industry.

Under Armour, a company breaking new ground in fitness, technology and health is another first time CES keynoter.

Twitter is at C Space this year.

Formula E is here to test their professional drivers’ skills against qualifying fans on a special virtual track of the Las Vegas strip.

Coldwell Banker is showcasing how technology is changing the way we buy, sell and live in our homes.

Turner Sports is sponsoring a three day conference on Sports Business Innovation, bringing together leading executives and personalities.

And at tomorrow's Super Session senior executives from Time, Flex, Ford and Intel will explore opportunities for the global innovation economy.

These examples highlight how technology has impacted industries from real estate, travel, tourism, new media and professional sports.

We’re on the cusp of great change.

But because we are in the tech industry, we must not fear change.

In two weeks, the 45th president of the United States will be sworn into office.

President-elect Trump will bring a new way of doing things to Washington.

Technology is not political by nature.

But it is our job, as a trade association, to work with the Trump Administration and the new Congress to protect and encourage innovation.

Innovators create jobs, grow the economy and enhance lives.

In the United States, the tech industry is the engine of the economy.

It accounts for 10 percent of GDP.

Our industry supports 15 million jobs, and creates $3.5 trillion in economic output.

To continue our success and our ability to drive economic growth, we need a healthy relationship with the new Administration.

As President Obama said the day after the election, we should want every U.S. president to succeed. 

We see opportunities to work with President Trump on infrastructure, strategic immigration reform and cutting rules that hamstring many businesses – big and small.

We want to do our part.

Today, I’m pleased to announce that CTA is stepping up to support our shared goals with the new administration.

Specifically we want a strong American economy with good paying jobs.

Accordingly, a few weeks ago, CTA’s Executive Board unanimously agreed to invest more than $1 million in:

First, the U.S. Tech Vets Program, a program CTA helped launch, which links U.S. employers and U.S. military veterans.

Second, technical training and certification programs such as the Mobile Electronics Certified Professional (MECP) program, with a specific focus on assisting at risk youth in receiving better paying technical jobs.

Third, a jobs fair to promote better paying U.S. jobs.

Fourth, a contest to promote job creation among CTA’s 2,200 member technology companies.

Awards will go to the companies which produce the highest number and/or highest percentage of new U.S. jobs.

Fifth, we will open new CTA offices in at least two states to support our mission to advance innovation in America and enhance our nation’s leadership in global competitiveness.

These five voluntary investments are a start that we hope other industries emulate.

It’s time we in corporate America take ethical responsibility and ownership for our national future, rather than measuring ethics by our ability to follow increasingly complex rules and laws.

The fact is the U.S. technology industry is in a good place to lead as technology is now a part of every major industry.

You can see that breadth across the show floor and among our keynote speakers.

The frontiers of tech are expanding, as the objects around us are becoming increasingly smarter and more connected.

From smart homes and smartphones to self-driving cars, digital health and connected cities, CES offers an all-encompassing view of the entire connected ecosystem. 

Broadband technology such as 5G will take us to the next level of mobility.

5G means faster and better broadband and home services, faster connectivity for smart cars, affordable smart city infrastructure and deeply interactive AR/VR experiences.

Tomorrow Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf will take the keynote stage to talk about the ground-breaking impact of 5G.

And Ericsson will share insights into the future of 5G during its Stoked about 5G SuperSession.

We’re also experiencing a massive transformation in transportation and the movement of people, whether its Google’s Waymo self-driving car, Elon Musk’s auto piloted Tesla or Uber and Lyft’s ridesharing model.

At CES this week, you will see launches of electric cars, self-driving cars and other new forms of transportation.

CES reflects an increasing pace of change.

This is because intelligence will be built into everything you can imagine to create a smarter more sustainable world.

Imagine a world where every individual, business, service and process will be connected to a cloud of smart products and systems that learn from one another.

They will help people discover new and better ways of doing nearly everything.

Innovation will create new ways to be more efficient and effective in how we do things.

How we run businesses, and how we develop products and solutions.

It is about enhancing how we live and work.

As pioneers, we push technology forward.

And that may make people a little uncomfortable.

With technology advancing so quickly, we, our society and our government have to ask some tough questions.

How do we protect consumer’s privacy?

CTA stepped up and worked with every major wearable maker to agree on a set of privacy principles focusing on transparency, privacy and consumer choice.

We also have to balance protecting privacy and fighting terrorism.

This requires private cooperation and a balance ensuring bad actors don’t get backdoor access to consumer’s private information.

But as technology evolves, especially self-driving cars, how do we recognize and assist those who lose their jobs due to new technology?

We must look at this issue and CTA will soon announce a conference in Washington next May on the Future of Work.

Our society will address these issues and technology should not be our limiting factor.

Rather, how we evolve as a society and how we confront important issues involving privacy, security, safety, and our core values will be our next big challenge.

Great change brings huge opportunities for mankind in terms of what we can do for ourselves and our fellow humans.

Technology will continue to better our world and help us extend the reach of our humanity.

This is why we believe it is important to announce and share our new campaign, Let’s Go Humans.

Let’s Go Humans celebrates the human ingenuity that drives technology advancements.

It showcases the products and technologies that are saving lives – from the grand scale to the individual.

And it celebrates the amazing innovators and entrepreneurs behind these life-changing technologies.

Our goal is to remind policymakers and the public that our industry is about so much more than cool products and helpful new services.

Our industry is changing the world for the better and improving the lives of global consumers.

But we need the right policies in place to enable innovation to continue to grow.

To help the best and brightest continue to develop solutions to the challenges facing our world.

As people, industries and ideas become more interconnected, innovation is the engine powering the global economy.

We will find new ways to solve problems using data and artificial intelligence.

And we will provide new personalized experiences.

And it is so important that CES. Our industry. Our customers. And our colleagues around the world embrace innovation as the healthy, worthwhile and life changing element of our shared future.

Whether it is health care or agriculture or the spread of information, the age of intelligence will allow us to improve lives at a scale we have never seen before.

Imagine, a world with no starvation, access to experience-based healthcare, no driving fatalities, education focused on individual learning styles and capabilities, productive jobs and skills learning for everyone, and no pollution.

A future where everyone can reach their potential.

All of this is within our reach.

We see the building blocks to create a smarter, better future at CES 2017.

A future that will make each of us stop and say "Woah!"

You will now hear one vision of that future.