Bring on the Show
The Consumer Electronics Show is the Las Vegas-based event where all the big gadgets and home entertainment goodies are unveiled for 2011 (apart from Apple and a few others, who do their own thing). However, as home and office slide inexorably together, it is just as much about how workers and Web users will interact with devices and data in the very near future as it is the latest in 3D television.
The Format Shuffle
First, there were phones, then smartphones -- now there are tablets, tablet-phones, mini-tablets and even monster-tablets. With the iPad and its rivals racking up massive sales, websites and your data need to behave nicely across yet another format.
Whether you like it or not, ensuring your CMS and website plays nicely with these iOS, Android and other devices is now a must-tick feature. And let's not even talk about the rash of Internet-enabled television sets (Microsoft is rumored to be launching Windows TV at the show) with their own browsers and app stores that will soon offer users another way to access the Web and their data.
Going for Fourth Gear
The impending launch of 4G high-speed mobile networks and devices will also help push data further into the wilds beyond the desktop. Knowledge workers and web workers, no matter how much they love viewing sites on their 21" monitors or chunky laptop screens, are going to have to get used to the idea that the world around them is going portable and users want their data to go along with them.
The CES Event has a section dedicated to "Access on the Go" with 15 companies exhibiting everything from cloud services to gadgets and accessories, and handwriting recognition systems. Another section of the show to check out for visitors should be "The Tweet House Presents: Social Media Success Stories." While, for those in or near Las Vegas, there will also be a chance to check out electric vehicles, the connected home and home health exhibits, all pointing the way forward for our digital society.
Something for Everyone
We'll take a closer look at the brands and products on show over the week, but the hottest five rumors or pre-announcements across the showfloor are:
- AMD to launch its first Fusion CPU/GPU combo chips
- IOMega's NAS servers add "Personal Cloud" storage
- Verizon's 4G offerings
- Star Wars movies to launch in 3D
- Session to visit: Merging Content with New Technologies
Expect a lot of other news to break over the week as the surprise launches and unveils hit. By this time next week, your Apple iPad could look distinctly old hat.