by Pete Deutschman, Chief Buddy

My wedding anniversary. My children and wife’s birthday. CES (Consumer Electronic Show).

Answer: Top 3 things I look forward to each year.

January 1st is always very difficult for me. Not because I am recovering from a few too many toasts the night before (although that might or might not be a reality) but because of the anticipation of what this year’s CES will present. Who is going to “bring it”? Which innovator has answered my plea from the year before?

CES 2009 brought us 82” HD LED displays, blacker blacks and the first major proliferation of accessories for mobile phones by almost every exhibitor. (see last year’s post Fraught with budget cuts and layoffs, attendance was low and the floor lacked energy and optimism.

Fast forward one year to CES 2010. The techonomics pendulum has swung in the opposite direction boosting energy, optimism and buyer outlook.

Here are a few observations, based on what I saw and the conversations with friends old and new, as well as some of the highlights (in my humble opinion).

  • Smart phone will rapidly be referred to as a connected device…with a phone. What connected device you carry will depend on your ability to connect to stay connected to the internet 24/7 and form factor. All devices are quickly becoming app ready, web-services connected and multi-purposed.
  • Integrated and connectedness between devices will create amazing efficiencies for consumers but also complications for manufacturers as content and integration “deals” have be made at break neck speed.
  • Refinement of product features and improvement of use cases over big swell innovation for a few more years ahead
  • 3D content creation tools are here but I still need stupid glasses to view them (for good quality).

My favorite innovation this year was found at a small little booth in the North Hall by a company called ThinkOptics, Inc. Manned with a table, an iphone and a 42” display their iWavit hardware and software turns your smart phone into the “ultimate remote control”. What is so compelling about this product is the ease of use and infinitive possibilities. In just 5 minutes, I watched founder and CTS Anders Grunnet-Jespen, Ph.D. effortlessly setup the device to control his TV, media center AND computer. That is all fine and dandy, but when the device allowed him to change channels on the TV and then switch over (with one click) to the PC and point and move the mouse (like a Wii remote) and control his computer screen, I knew I found the device for me. Too bad it is not for sale yet…I hope some of my other favorite connected devices take note. This is going to be huge.

Click here to watch the video my best of

3D hardware continues to be all the rage. For me, its cool, but I can’t see it becoming mass in each home unless the user can “switch” between 3D and standard 1080p. Even then, for good quality you have to wear those stupid glasses and let me tell you, with two kids in the house and two dogs, I have a hard enough time keeping my regular glasses from getting broken or lost. Nonetheless, for 3D to take off, it has to be easier to create that content. Panasonic showed off their new camera with a live display. I shot a quick video to show what the camera looks like.

Click here to watch the video
Panasonic 3D Camera: Retail price aprox. $32,000

Where should we mount this flat panel? Well, if it is truly flat then it really doesn’t matter. Introducing the world slimmest full LED by LG. No words needed…just watch the video

Click here to watch the video
Life is Good with LG…that is for sure.

Intel made quite an impact on me as they do every year. Their new ATOM processor is about the size of 5 grains of rice. But what was really cool was their interactive cube display. The presenter had a laptop that allowed her to control the search and display parameters real time. Little sliders on her display changed what we as an interactive user saw as options for searching and interacting. What was really impressive was that there did not to seem to be a limit on the amount of people who could touch and click on the screens at once. I suppose that was the point…thanks Intel.

Click here to watch the video
Intel Interactive out of home display

I also found a fun little product called Beamz. Beamz is a professional interactive instrument. Each laser beam controls a different instrument, rhythm or sound effect. I watched the DJ go back and forth between scratching vinyl and using the Beamz and must say, Beamz is much more interesting to watch. It is a real art form. Click here to watch the video Beamz- each laser mean controls a different instrument, rhythem or sound effect

All in all a great trip. There was not enough time to catch up with everyone but it was good to connect with those we rand into on the floor and in suites. We even enjoyed an evening out to see Cirque’s Love (@cirque) along with a backstage tour. Truly a great experience.

Post Author

Pete Deutschman Pete is Chief Buddy at The Buddy Group. Twitter @mybuddypeted

This post is the author's opinion and not necessarily that of The Buddy Group™ (unless it's about ice cream - they never disagree about that).

  • martnrob

    I feel like I just took a trip on a time machine to the future.


  • carlosmusquez

    GREAT STUFF PETE. Thanks for sharing.

    Love the INTEL cube search interface.

    It's 2010 and I don't have a flying car but having my iPhone be a true UNIVERSAL remote is wicked cool.

    Ummmm THAT LG TV IS RIDICULOUS. I see entire mirror walls that transform into communication touch devices (think total recall) in our near future. And of course they will be controlled by our iPhones.

    The BEAM instrument is cool. Have you ever seen a "THERAMIN"? Check out the link. This dude how a cool idea way back then and it is nice to see someone taking it to the next level. As a music guy I love this kind of stuff.

    Keep it coming. I'd love to hear and see more from CES.

    Oh and I agree 3d is sort of not that cool. The technology has been around for quite some time and honestly just isn't that impressive. When the glasses go away and I can have the same experience I get at DISNEY in their 3d shows in my living room. Where it is 4D then I am interested.



  • Doug Kulak

    I've never been to CES but after seeing some of the cool new technology there I can't wait to go there next year! In regards to the iPhone remote app, it reminds me of this app that I have that effectively turns the iPhone into a touchpad input device for your PC or Mac, very cool! I can totally see how someone could tap into the accelerometer and gyroscope, if that is indeed how they achieve that, to create an accurate pointing device for your connected device. Computers are connected devices too, right? ;) I really like that these labels are being redefined for virtually every electronic device since in essence they are each capable to a certain degree of performing the same tasks as the next, some are just better equipped for a particular task than others. It will be really exciting to see what the next 10 years, or even 5 years, or even 1 year brings. Count me in for next year at CES, I'll see you there!

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