• France's news in English
 
app_header_v3
France shows the world a glimpse of the future
Parrot Bebop Drones fly at the booth of the French company Parrot in front of a "Je Suis Charlie" sign. Photo: AFP

France shows the world a glimpse of the future

The Local · 6 Jan 2016, 16:37

Published: 06 Jan 2016 16:37 GMT+01:00

There's a distinctly French feeling at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas - which started on Tuesday - as a record 190 French startup companies are running their own booths and vying to attract investors and increase their visibility. 
 
This makes up around a third of the total startups at the Eureka Park venue, and only the US will have more at 42 percent.
 
The French interest in the five-day event has already turned heads in the tech world, with the Tech Editor of Yahoo in the US headlining that "France is absolutely crushing it" at the show.
 
"The winner of CES will be France," writes Jason Gilbert. "If you want a glimpse at the future, pay attention to the absurd yet magical gizmos coming out of France. Here in Las Vegas, at least, its technology minds are simply belting the competition."
 
This is no doubt thanks to more established startups like Parrot, Withings or Netatmo, but also from breakthrough hits such as the smart belt "Belty" (see pic below). This device comes with inbuilt electronics that automatically loosen or tighten your belt depending on what you're doing, while also working as a "virtual fitness coach". 
 
 
The French product is already making noise online, and getting rave reviews in the process and we shouldn't be surprised.
 
"In recent years at CES, French startups have dependably introduced products that have been the talk of the show," writes Yahoo's tech chief Gilbert.
 
"French entrepreneurs (“entrepreneur” is a French word, you know) have re-imagined the home computer, home gardening, and weight loss. Their products reliably blend ingenuity, cleverness, design smarts, and a vision of the future.
 
As another sign that France is taking the opportunity seriously, French guests at the show include Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron and Pierre Gattaz, the president of Medef (the French business confederation).
 
France's tech scene has been in fine form lately, with Paris ranked in October as the sixth best European city for startups and for scale-ups, according to the European Digital City Index for 2015.
 

(An attendee looks at the Activité Pop smartwatch by French company Withings. Photo: AFP)
 
"This high ranking is due, in part, to a well-developed venture capital industry and several world-class research institutions, together with an increasing number of co-working spaces and accelerators," the report noted. 
 
Story continues below…
It pointed out that the startup scene was aided by France Digitale and La French Tech, both of which work to promote the profile of French startups. 
 
France has scene some mega successes of late, most notably with car-sharing app BlaBlaCar, the current startup darling of the tech scene in Paris, which recently became the first French startup to be valued at over $1 billion
 
Gary Shapiro, the CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association which runs the Vegas show, has sung France's startup praises, noting that the choice of Paris as a host of the "CES Unveiled" show last year was "because of France’s proven reputation as a hotspot for startups and innovation".
 
The Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which was launched in 1967, runs until Saturday. 

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
France charges Charlie Hebdo killer’s relative
The suspect was charged after being handed over to French authorities by Bulgaria. Dimitar Dilkoff /AFP

The brother-in-law of one of the jihadists who attacked French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo last year faced terrorism charges on Saturday for allegedly trying to join Islamic State fighters in Syria, a judicial source said.

French mayors dismiss suspended burqini ban
Photo: Jean Christophe Magnenet /AFP

The row over France’s burqini ban continues with several mayors vowing to keep restrictions in place despite the country’s top court suspending the ban in the resort town of Villeneuve-Loubet.

France's top court suspends burqini ban
Photo: bellmon1/Flickr

France's highest administrative court has suspended a town's ban on wearing the full-body burqini swimsuit.

Milk price raised, but French farmers still unhappy
The sign on the tractor reads 'We're dying', as farmers blocked Lactalis dairy headquarters. Photo: AFP

Milk prices have been raised by France's biggest dairy group to placate farmers, but unions say their demands have not been met.

Burqini bans 'dividing France's Muslim women'
Photo: AFP

The burqini bans have divided France, but they have also left Muslim women in France in two groups, argues a professor who has spent years studying the impact of the burqa.

Pizza-delivery drones could be on their way to France
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's your pizza. Photo: AFP

No more need to deal with grumpy French waiters...

Heatwave drags on as France faces red-hot weekend
Photo: AFP

France will see searing temperatures on Friday and Saturday, as the heatwave warnings have been extended (once again).

Nice: The French capital of burqini fines
The beach in the Riviera city of Nice. Photo: Valery Hache/AFP

It's one of only two of the 30 towns with a burqini ban in place to have actually given out any fines.

How to make France's famed Île Flottante dessert
Photo: Paul Oatway

France-based food blogger Laura Tobin shares her recipe for this delicious French dessert.

France's top court set to rule on burqini ban
Photo: bellmon1/Flickr

France's highest administrative court will decide this afternoon whether to overturn the burqini ban.

Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Education
French schools to ramp up security with 'mock attacks'
Sponsored Article
5 reasons to try dating in Paris with The Inner Circle
Features
Where to go in France to find the best ice cream
National
Majority in France against burqinis on beaches
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
National
How to keep cool during France's heatwave
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Society
Parisians invited to swim in the Bassin de la Villette
Society
Five tips for surviving an internship in France
Politics
Déja vu? Familiar faces in France's presidential race
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
National
Meet the man paying off burqini fines in France
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
National
Eight tips on buying wine in a French supermarket
Society
Here's how to enjoy Paris (while avoiding the heat)
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Society
Ten mistakes to avoid when dating a Frenchman
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Society
Twelve 'French' things that aren't actually French at all
'World's priciest home' on sale in French Riviera for €1 billion
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
Lifestyle
RECIPE: How to make the tastiest ratatouille
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
National
Paris sees Europe's biggest plunge in 'liveability'
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
National
Life on the home front in rural France's 'war on terror'
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Features
Weird facts you didn't know about the French language
Society
Paris foodie event cancelled over lack of security
How to tackle six of the trickiest French verbs
National
Summer in France - 'the ideal time to find a job'
National
'Burqini bans will only divide France more'
National
French vineyards revive horse-drawn ploughs
French mayor bans Pokemon Go app from his village
2,755
jobs available