CES 2011 – Where’s Dave?

For the first time since the blog really got rolling, I won’t be attending the Consumer Electronics Show. CES, of course, is the largest tech trade show in the US and where a wide array of companies preview their wares.

As with most years, early on I debated attending. Last year, for example, we had record traffic in January due to our CES coverage… yet revenue was down something like a third from the preceding December, as advertisers save their big spends for the holidays. Additionally, both the deluge of pre-show product announcements and time spent covering products that ultimately never ship has been bit demoralizing. And then there’s the miles of walking and days of sleep deprivation.

However, the truth is I always do have a blast… Meeting up with folks I only see on an annual basis and hopefully providing good commentary, including uncovering nuggets or going on deep dives that the big boys don’t. The invitation from Harry McCracken (Technologizer, Time) to help judge Last Gadget Standing this year sealed the deal for attending CES 2011.

Yet, reality has conspired against me. ZNF has always been a hobby and the simple fact of the matter is, due to an ongoing out of state medical crisis and new home projects, I’m into negative leave at work. My mental capacity is also into negative territory at this point. And so, with many mixed emotions, I canceled my trip just a few days ago.

The good news is that Mari will be attending CES as planned, and has in fact extended her stay. Additionally, she’s bid Motorola adieu. Which I hope translates into more ZNF coverage. I’ve sent her on missions to replace me at what look to be compelling Verizon FiOS TV and Microsoft Mediaroom briefings. As with last year, TiVo’s booth is private, suggesting there’s nothing imminent that we haven’t already been made aware of. So I didn’t burden Mari with that invite-only appointment. And, even though I won’t be onsite, I have been pre-briefed on a few items – at least one of which I’ll hit. Also, I intend to aggregate some of the more compelling news and products that come out of Vegas this week.

9 thoughts on “CES 2011 – Where’s Dave?”

  1. I just have the feeling this CES is going to leave me underwhelmed this year.

    Of course I am not shocked by the TiVo closed door meetings. If I was going, I think I would still have to stop by to see just for curiosity sake.

  2. Sorry to hear you’re not going to make it this year. Vegas won’t be the same without you. OK… it will. Not much changes Vegas. But CES won’t be the same.

  3. Awe, that’s too bad you had to cancel. I’d love to hit up CES sometime… Maybe one of these years I’ll get a chance.

    I have a feeling that there will be a big buzz in tablet’s this year. Perhaps more 3DTV push and hopefully more “content anywhere” ie) multiroom and mobile. I’d like to see Verizon, DirecTV and DishNetwork’s stuff to see if any new innovative technologies are on the way. I’m also looking for a tablet that can do Flash for my buddies Real Estate business. Many of the websites he uses requires flash, so an iPad doesn’t cut it.

    I can’t wait to read the posts. I always feel like a kid in a candy store.

    Thanks Mari for your coverage on ZNF!

  4. cypher, Thanks for reminding me… There’s what seemed like a significant DECE presentation I was supposed to attend, I’ll see if Mari has interest and time. DISH always has a pretty big presence and Verizon does have some new stuff to share… I think you’re right the show will be overrun with Android tablets.

  5. I’m not making it this year either, and it’s a bummer, mostly for not being able to see great people like Dave and Mari, and Brad!

    Good luck Mari, I’ll be following your coverage from afar! ;)

  6. I forgot about tablets even though this is something I am looking into. I will probably just end up with a laptop though since the iPad would end up most likely only being used with the TiVo app.

  7. I would really love to hear that Direct TV and TIVO have finally produced a viable product and not just another piece of vaporware. I have had Directtv/TIVO since Series 1 and Lifetime Subscriptions. My newest receiver had a power supply failure so I am using my old receiver… I stinks and is sloooooooow.

    Are we ever going to see a real product?

  8. Guy,

    From what we heard so far, the DirecTivo is based on a receiver that is 2 generations ago, the HR-22. Also it contains the same 10 year old interface as the original Tivo. I’m not sure what took them so long just to bring an outdated platform to DirecTV, when Virgin Media UK’s solution is much more elegant (full HD UI, 3 tuners, etc..).

    To me, that’s simply a huge waste of Tivo, DirecTV, and their customer’s time. DirecTV is working on a new HD-UI, as well as working with RVU to get cheap thin clients (which could even be embedded in TV’s). They also have a viable working Multiroom solution with a unified playlist, and IP Control. I can control my stuff with through a web browser on my iPhone or laptop. There is also a greesemonkey script that once configured will change the DirecTV box to the channel number you click on when viewing DirecTV or TitanTV’s online guide.

    If Tivo fails to innovate, which all signs are pointing to, then again they have failed to get me as a customer. The in house solution WORKS, and I KNOW an HD-UI upgrade is on the way, as it was in the DirecTV’s investor presentation. With Tivo, they are so afraid of people copying them (thanks to Echostar), that they are so private and closed on the matter. If they came out and said “Were also working on an HD Tivo UI for DirecTV” I would be excited and give them a chance. But no… sorry Tivo, no deal here!

Comments are closed.