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Before The Future Shop team heads off to Las Vegas next week to see and hear the bold proclomations for Tech at CES 2012, I thought it would be interesting to look back at some of the things we reviewed at the 2011 fair to see how they've fared.
CES 2011 REVIEW
BlackBerry debuting the Playbook at CES 2011 was big news. We had reservations about the tethering, OS and lack of release date and our concerns came true. The Playbook has been flop, the prices have come crashing down to move the merchandise. Now with Apple set for iPad 3, BlackBerry just can't catch up.
In fact tablets were everywhere on the show floor at CES 2011. Many manufacturers had their models behind glass, frantically trying to catch up to the iPad lead.
I had the most fun playing with the AR Drone, not your typical remote control flying object. Smart TVs were front and centre at CES 2011 and with rumours of Apple entering the app enabled screen market in 2012, this is just the leading edge of televisions becoming streaming and internet-enabled devices. 3D was huhge on the show floor as well, and while I enjoyed the LG 3D experience, I'm still not convinced this is going to be a homerun for home theatre.
Lady Gaga made a splash at CES 2011 trying to breathe life back in to Polaroid with her Haus of Gaga designs. They were a little out there and I didnt hear any buzz outside the trade floor for her tech toys.
The House of Marley was an afterthought for us to visit as CES was closing down one evening. We spent 30 minutes lounging with the staff as they cleaned up and they couldnt have been nicer. (They had let us borrown their van to get to the trade show the day before when all other transportation was taken). The House of Marley made a splash in Canada this fall and we think the organic design and quality sound still has room to grow.
LG promised us innovative uses for stoves and refridgerators that still seem a little more Jetsons and Lottery Prize Home than mainstream. Still, this is where the technology is going in the home - eventually.
CES 2012 PREVIEW
From tablets to smartphones to connected living rooms, here's a collection of technology analysts with their expectations:
Lady Gaga, 50 Cent, Black Eyed Peas, Olive Stone and Rick Fox made appearances last year. This year's celeb list includes Snooki as she endorses a line with iHip. Dennis Rodman, Jillian Michaels, 50 Cent, Eliza Dushku, LL Cool J and ... Justin Bieber are also scheduled to make appearances.
This is the year camera manufacturers catch up with the Eye-Fi cards that gave you the ability to share photos over WiFi. Canon, Samsung and JVC will be boasting of cameras with WiFi while Fuji will be unveiling a mirrorless camera.
BIG ASS TVS
Each year Panasonic, Samsung, Sony, Sharp, LG etc duke it out to have the biggest, the best and slimmest screens. LG is playing their hand a little early this year promising an 84" 3D UD set. (UD is Ultra Definition, it's higher than high def with 8 million pixels, and a resolution of 3840 x 2160).
Future Shop will have live streaming teams covering the keynotes (including Microsoft's final appearance at CES), bloggers working the floor and I'll have a camera team in tow interviewing the manufacturers and demoing their latest products to throw up on the Future Shop YouTube channel.