Pre-CES 2014 Thoughts

Pre-CES 2014 Thoughts

Coming this week the majority of tech-focused news outlets will begin their coverage of CES, the annual Consumer Electronics Show held each year in Las Vegas, NV.  There was a time in my life when I’d likely be on a plane today or yesterday, assisting a client and ensuring they had a smooth running 60 minutes of keynote time.  While I rarely do corporate events anymore, I do occasionally miss being in the thick of the show floor seeing what new things are (or not) coming out this year.

Exhibitors spend a crazy amount of money fighting for space to ply their wares to press and other industry professionals.  It’s all about who can brag the loudest and best about their tech.

Understandably,  the news outlets are running their own guesses as to what will come out of CES– I’ve picked out some of the choicest bits (and tried to give proper attribution), so without further ado:

Wearable Computing/Devices

Wired magazine’s latest issue is all about wearable technologies, with an emphasis on attempting to leverage the data that these devices will generate about you and/or your events.  I spent the holiday with some friends that were both hooked on using a Fitbit One for their fitness/sleep tracking and goals.  I personally leverage the iPhone 5S for the majority of my tracking, but that’s only because I generally always have my phone in my pocket.  And while I’m asleep its on the nightstand charging.

Fitbit One  http://www.fitbit.com/gallery

Fitbit One
http://www.fitbit.com/gallery

Google’s Glass product is high-profile use of this technology, and I can’t quite tell how enthused the public is.  I think to be really successful this technology has to be ubiquitous and solve more than one problem in your life.  So far, I don’t see a compelling scenario from any company out there, but I don’t think that’ll stop anyone from launching tech.

4K is coming! (Or so they would have you believe)

I’m sure there’ll be more than one display maker out there pushing 4k displays at the show.  YouTube is apparently demoing a low-bandwidth encode of 4K (also called Ultra-HD) content on the show floor.  Personally, I’m more interested in the VP9 codec that they’re using as it’s open-source, but we’ll see.  Until there is compelling content, I think this tech will continue to show up at press events for the next couple of years, and even be sold to the ignorant consumer.

Keynote Address

I may be the only one who really likes the keynotes– The photo above is from my time working with Verizon on their keynote at CES 2011.  While I really do miss the days of Bill Gates coming out on the stage, I’m excited to see compelling projects from Intel and Yahoo.  Both companies are experiencing new leadership, and I’m curious to see what kind of announcements they’ll make that will lead-off this tech circus.

So, there you have it.  As I reformat GeekApproach into something a bit more realistic given my time constraints, I’ll likely adopt a more rapid mode of posting during CES.  Rather than post long-form observations, I think I’ll cherry-pick the interesting posts from my own readings and post them here.