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A behind-the-scenes look at the Digital Trends Experience Center at CES 2021

This time of year, Digital Trends is usually on the ground and in person at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Clearly, this year is a bit different. Thousands of attendees, companies, exhibitors, and even us journalists are taking it in all online. Digital Trends was proud to provide complete coverage of this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, and to give our viewers the latest updates and stories from our Digital Trends Experience Center.

While many things have stopped due to the pandemic, technology never does — and neither do we. Our COVID-safe CES format was all digital, offered in a virtual mixed-media presentation. After all, why rely solely on green screens and typical Zoom calls when your entire studio can be virtual?

We were live from a virtual set in Los Angeles throughout the entirety of CES with the help of the Unreal Engine — the same technology Disney uses to create virtual worlds for The Mandalorian. Using this format, we were able to beam people in from all around the world in amazing new ways, all to bring you product demos on everything from earbuds to airplanes. Our coverage included a who’s who of well known gamers, athletes, astronauts, actors, comedians, musicians, technology experts, and more, who brought their own points-of-view, expertise, personalities, and perspective to make our coverage of this year’s Consumer Electronics Show among the best in the business.

Using sets all across the country, including our studios in Portland and New York, we took advantage of our extensive and exclusive networks to curate stories of the biggest news and coolest technologies. Along with crowd favorite announcements like the Digital Trends “Best Of” awards and audience choice awards, we also brought you segments like “Tech for Change,” where we highlighted and awarded companies that are using technology to change the world for the better.

CES 2021 was markedly different this year. While we didn’t get to experience it in person, we were proud to use the latest technology to bring our viewers and readers the breaking news coming out of CES, and to get them as close to being on the actual CES floor as possible.

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Todd Werkhoven
Todd Werkhoven's work can be read at numerous publications and he co-authored a personal finance book called "Zombie…
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