CES is a ruthless grind. As the largest tech convention in the world wraps up today in Las Vegas, thousands of attendees are engaged in one last push to make the most of a hectic week filled with problematic product launches, power outages, and too many sales pitches to count — and they’re dead tired.
The cracks started to show Wednesday, technically only the convention’s second day. Mixed in among the drone-racing courses, home robots, and at least one promise of free beer (only while supplies last!), were an untold number of people from around the world just trying to catch a goddamn minute of sleep.
From nodding off at booths, to head-in-lap moments of presumed peace, to just saying “screw it” and laying on the floor, it was abundantly clear that the biggest trend at CES was sleeping through CES.
And then there were the recliners.
The overpowering fluorescent lights and incessant din of hopeful pitches were no match for the powerful siren call of lounging chairs equipped with various types of massage tech. People lined up for the chance to lay down, close their eyes, and catch up on some much needed REM under the presumed guise of product research.
The five or so separate recliner booths we spotted in the South Hall promising a brief moment of respite were a clear favorite among attendees. Even if it wasn’t to literally conk out, just getting off their feet for a few moments was enough for some.
And yes, people were still interested in all the other tech on display. A phone that doubles as a laptop trackpad? Sure, why not. Apparent holographic video produced by spinning projectors of some kind? Don’t mind if I do! But oh, to sleep, even if just for a second.
Clearly, even in the presence of all the cutting-edge gadgetry featured at CES, humans still must grapple with the need for good old fashioned shut-eye.
And that’s something no drone, robot, or new phone can change (yet).
But don’t worry, we’re sure some company somewhere is working on a product to do just that — possibly coming to a CES 2019 booth. Just don’t sleep through the sales pitch.