Android becomes the Windows of opportunity

It goes both ways. But maybe not much longer.

Microsoft continues to slide toward the back of the mass computing market pack. Three more signs it’s losing its grip on consumer-grade devices:


Three things you won't see at CES 2013

Rocking with Jonney.

No computer companies. Ten years ago, they were the stars of the show. The final keynote by Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer last year marked the end of their run. (Apple was so far ahead of the curve they stopped showing up before they stopped being a computer company).

I’ll miss ASUS’s Jonney Shih and even Intel’s Paul Otellini. They had interesting ideas to share, and said it well. On the other hand, some won’t be missed.… More

Shouldn't it be One Tablet per Child?

29 December 2012 by Steve Blum
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And the hits just keep on coming.

Forbes has made it official: the tablet killed off the netbook. Better late than never.

It was obvious to anyone at the CES Unveiled 2012 event back in January. The One Laptop per Child (OLPC) display was mobbed, as they demonstrated a $100 tablet that replaced their original $100 computer project. Which, by the way, was the genesis of the netbook.

They never quite got their computer down to the target price point, but so many people who saw the prototypes said “I want one” that manufacturers such as ASUS and MSI jumped on the opportunity.… More

NVIDIA CEO Huang gets the vision thing

9 January 2012 by Steve Blum
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It was a little odd watching the CEO of NVIDIA, Jen-Hsun Huang, spend most of his press conference time editing photos, remoting from one device to another and playing computer games. NVIDIA is a chip maker, not a game publisher or software company or computer manufacturer. But his roundabout approach was a dramatic way of proving the power of his chips and the platforms they support.
The hour long demo session drove home the point that NVIDIA powers consumer electronics products, not computers for the workplace, although performance is comparable for many – most – personal applications.

Computer companies changing role, not ditching CES

8 January 2012 by Steve Blum
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Microsoft says 2012 will be its last year at the Consumer Electronics Show. ASUS isn’t holding its usual we’re-just-as-sexy-as-Apple preview event. MSI is MIA.
Computer companies have been exhibiting at CES for about 20 years, migrating to the show as Comdex died out. Microsoft Bob made his debut at CES in 1995. This “consumer friendly” information manager/productivity software package apparently got lost on the way to the airport and was never seen again. He happened in Vegas, he stayed in Vegas.

The chips are about to fall

5 January 2011 by Steve Blum
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So far, the only close-to-really-new announcements have come from ASUS. That might be because the 2011 CES story is about incremental improvement and minor innovations, not radically new products or services. Or it could be a question of chipsets.

Everyone is hinting or outright pimping upcoming tablet computer announcements, but not actually saying what it is. That’s a little unusual for press days at CES, but it could be because Intel has what it thinks is a huge announcement to make in a few minutes, and they’ve turned the screws on their customers with the idea of managing some kind of coordinated roll out.… More

If A is for Apple, why not for ASUS?

4 January 2011 by Steve Blum
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 Jonney rocks it like Steve
All he needed was the black turtleneck. OK, Steve Jobs’ reality distortion field would have helped too.

ASUS chairman Jonney Shih borrowed the Apple chairman’s presentation style, falling only a little short on the mojo. Shih introduced four different implementations of the new eee Pad family of touchscreen tablets.

First up was the Eee Pad MeMo, a 7-inch tablet device that looks a lot like a big iPod Touch and runs Android on a Snapdragon processor.… More

The mobile phone is the set top box

Long-odds prediction for the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show: the mobile phone will be the set top box. Expect a prototype that tethers a large screen display to a media-rich smart phone. You walk in the room and your stuff appears on the screen. You will only have one channel and it will be whatever you want to watch, where ever you happen to be.

If someone doesn’t roll it out here in Las Vegas this week, you’ll see it shortly from Apple (which is too hip to hang at CES these days) or at a mobile phone event in someplace like Barcelona or Orlando or San Diego, at the latest.… More

ASUS aims for design and lifestyle driven brand positioning

5 January 2010 by Steve Blum
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ASUS chairman Jonney Shih gambled that he could set a meet-or-beat benchmark with an early Tuesday news conference at the Consumer Electronics Show. Risky strategy, because if he doesn’t have a game-changing announcement, ASUS will end up looking diminished with every comparison made during Wednesday’s wall-to-wall press events.

Didn’t happen. No tablet computer or e-reader or smartphone to announce.

Turns out, the game they’re trying to change is their brand positioning: shift the ASUS brand from representing smaller, cheaper, geekier laptops and netbooks to being a full-on, mainstream portable computer maker, with a design-driven, consumer electronics edge.… More

Live from CES Unveiled, pre-press day, Tuesday 6 January 2009

Last to first, real time tweets from Las Vegas…

  • Tethering is deciding battle between mobile carriers & CE industry. CE guys don’t get it, think it’s a tech problem. It’s the money!
  • Novatel Wireless hasn’t signed any carriers yet. Expects to Real Soon Now. If they do, it’s a significant market signal re tethering.
  • Novatel Wireless also into tethering. Selling gizmo combining mobile data card, embedded Linux, WiFi tethering. Serves 5 users at once.
  • Blaupunkt has Internet car radio.