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Highlights from the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show

CES 2012 – Can you feel the beat?

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2012 kicked off the year with over 140,000 visitors, 3,300 exhibitors, covering 1.8 million net square feet in Las Vegas. With new product announcements in the tablet, phone, laptop, HDTV, camera, and gadget categories the overarching message was importance of a very high speed, ubiquitous cloud and the importance of technology and lifestyle integration.

 According to David Lahme, President of TradePort USA, a consumer electronics reverse logistics company based in Somersworth, “CES 2012 continues to draw major industry players competing for the spotlight. Attendance is climbing back up to where it was in a boom economy. The energy was contagious.” He remarked that overall, many of the business partners he met with were bullish on the U.S. economy, and that “high morale was great to see and that transcends to positive business for all of us.”

What’s our future look like? Within the decade you can expect 3-D printers, hologram tablets, and office glass windows to transform into networked media screens and digitized touch sensitive white boards. What’ the impact on our current network? There are 400 million devices connected today, namely computers and mobile devices. By 2020, the estimate is 50 billion devices. What is being added to the mix are cars, appliances, radios, phones, etc. talking to each other.  Expect to speak to most devices and have them to listen, interpret, and perform. “Play CNN news highlights. Drive to the office via the gym. Connect me with my conference call. Record session, transcribe, and save in the database.”

Moore’s Law is the heartbeat behind several new announcements. Semiconductor companies are striving to provide Watson-like supercomputing power into your mobile device, at the tune of triple digit terabytes and multi-gigahertz processors. Image the size of the network. At CES 2012, we had a glimpse of those devices getting ready for another technology explosion in the next decade.

 What’s News 

Streamlined OLED TVs (Organic Light Emitting Diode)

TVs are taken to a new level with super slim, 4mm thin, 3D “ultra-definition” picture quality unrivaled by anything today and bezels that look like infinity pools, just glass. LG takes the cake with their 8 million pixels, or 400% better resolution of existing HD TVs (3840×2160). SONY’s branded version is Crystal LED.

“Haptics” Touch enabled Ultrabooks and Phones

Haptics have been enhanced with electroactive polymer film that expands when hit with voltage and saves 70% more battery power. This enables smartphones, game controllers, and other hand held devices swipe and scroll better. Look for 4th generation iPods Touch with this enhancement.  

Doodling Smart Pens

Scribing has taken on new meaning with smart pens popping out of smart phones and tablets to annotate a photograph, ZigZag or collaborative whiteboarding, and sign just about anything. Your autographed picture, please. Samsung’s SPen and 4G LTE Note will start doodling away on Android’s 2.3 OS. Did I mention the 5.3” AMOLED screen, 16 Gig storage, and 8 megapixel camera? Check the Apple and Andorid app stores soon.

Voice Enablement

Voice-based controls are becoming more standard for everything from cars to mobile devices, and eventually appliances. For example, Microsoft’s Kinect sensor for the Xbox 360 and iPhone 4G Siri, powered by Nuance. Dragon will help us talk to our TV’s in the future. Find me a great comedy show for tonight at 8:00 PM. Ok!

 The Rumor Mill

Analysts were hot to spot an iPad 3 to be the first to give us the dirt. Although noone can confirm an official sighting, the rumor mill has that we can expect a 1mm increase in depth that you won’t even notice. Also, the camera is rumored to mimic the  iPhone 4S’s much-improved rear camera system, minus the LED flash.  My guess is that it will encorporate broad bush technology enhancements like haptics, voice-based controls, smart pens, and perhaps be able to talk to my TV. 

 Our hope is that more New Hampshire companies plan on attending CES 2013 so we can keep our technology edge.

 Catherine Blake, President

Sales Protocol International



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