SXSW Day 2: Bearing and Full Speed Ahead toward Trends

Our appetite for innovation and news is well served already at breakfast.

We invited a speaker to our group to present ideas and approaches during a breakfast talk.

Rohit Bhargava is a bestselling author and founder of the Non-Obvious Company. His field is identifying trends at very early stages and forecasting the respective opportunities for companies.

For us he selected seven trends that he sees as up and coming in 2019; among others, enterprise empathy (in their business dealings companies show empathy in accounting for special needs, e.g. those of people with disabilities), innovation envy (companies envy the inventions of others and copy rather than innovate), retro-trust (consumers look for trustworthy brands and orient themselves towards "old-school" brands) and touchworthiness (a return to the value of haptic and sensory impressions, including when shopping in a world characterized by virtual and digital impressions). These are interesting impulses that we review once again on our way towards the Congress Center.

One of our focuses today: the installations and establishments of the brands represented. Another highlight is the appearance of Accenture Interactive. And again different fields of application for augmented and virtual reality applications are presented - this year, however, already as an integral part of business processes and integrated with large platforms such as Salesforce. Multisensory film screenings are just as captivating as the latest full-body sensor suit for controlling machines. Ready Player One sends greetings.

At DELL, we see how they are working to upgrade laptops in terms of image and sound and to provide a "user-centric" response to the usage situation. We visit SAP, the yoga brand Lululemon, Sony and Bose. At Bose we also see the evolution of technologies compared to last year. Augmented sunglasses with sound integration will not only be back this year as a prototype. They can be purchased as a series product and are equipped with an entire ecosystem of their own applications.

The lectures and panel discussions continue in parallel. A central topic is artificial intelligence and in particular the question of the impact of AI on society, the value of human labor. There are many scenarios for the years to come - some positive, some less positive for our society, our companies and for us as individuals. A topic that politics, society and industry will definitely have to deal with in the next few years.

Go-with-the-flow is one of the basic principles at SXSW. We let ourselves drift in the stream of participants, and see things that we didn't have on the agenda. For that we didn't see other things that were actually on the agenda. But those who try to absolutely stick to their plan will only rush from one lecture to the next and still miss a lot.

The day ends with our dinner at Salt Lick BBQ, about 30 minutes outside Austin. We are on a learning journey - and in proper style we drive to the restaurant in an American school bus. Together with the local inhabitants we enjoy our dinner and a real Texas evening. Tomorrow another full day awaits us. Never stop exploring!