Steve Koenig, vice president of research at the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), said in his “Tech Trends to Watch” presentation at CES 2022 that the metaverse will become "inextricably linked with our physical reality" over the next 10 to 20 years. Now, we’re seeing that the latest tech unveiled at CES 2022 projects a near future where digital portals go beyond screens, dispersing into the world around us.

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TCL NXTWear Air, courtesy of TCL

The TCL NXTWear Air glasses may look like RayBans, but they’re actually the most updated TV glasses from the tech company. Unveiled at the CES 2022 showcase, the NXTWear Air glasses are compatible with over 100 smartphones and devices, can plug into any USB compatible device, and serve as an external monitor capable of creating “a movie-theater experience in front of your eyes,” the Wall Street Journal reports. Work, media, and movies can all be viewed while lounging or laying down, and the tinted lenses can be swapped for different styles.

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Mojo Vision lens

Mojo Vision showed off their smart contact lenses, which may be the future of fitness and movement tracking. Equipped with motion sensors and a processor, the prototype contact lens aims to display fitness updates, like heart rate and speed. The lenses may possibly utilize Mojo Vision’s eye-movement control technology to control the interface as well.

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LINKLET wearable camera

LINKLET presented a new type of wearable at the showcase: an LTE enabled camera worn around a user’s neck. The interactive, live camera allows consumers to Zoom or livestream handsfree and on the go. The brand demonstrated remote viewer ability to collaborate and experience the wearer’s performed tasks from a first-person standpoint. From tours to lessons to shopping and streaming, LINKLET posed the possibility to make remote participation appear physically present.

Even traditional large screen interactions are moving away from their traditional mounts and stands. Alienware, Dell's gaming hardware division, unveiled Concept Nyx: a new prototype that allows gamers to switch between screens and devices seamlessly without interrupting engagement. Offering another way to eliminate walled-in boundaries, LG spotlighted its Room-to-Room Share feature that lets viewers transfer content between smart screens with ease.

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A Mojo Vision lens

Looking ahead to a metaverse-enabled future, Kai Bond, a partner at gaming-focused venture capitalist fund Courtside Ventures, tells Wunderman Thompson Intelligence that a key component missing from current technology is a “digital rendition of a decentralized advisory platform that allows you to seamlessly go between different worlds.” Kerry Murphy, founder and CEO of digital fashion house The Fabricant, predicts that technology is moving us away from traditional screens, “Once glasses get an AR filter, I won’t need a laptop anymore…just a virtual interface,” Murphy tells Wunderman Thompson Intelligence. “Laptops are going to disappear. Maybe even smartphones are going to disappear.” These wearable renditions of interactive, lifestyle-compatible lenses may be the beginning of the next shift in user-interface technology.

Technology once required consumers to adjust to its settings. Now, technology is adjusting to its consumers instead. Digital engagement is integrating into the physical world for a seamless and untethered user experience.

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