Another CES found in the books. The transition to default meant that it was a smaller show than usual – and since it’s already been a show that has been declining in impact for a few years now, we might feel it. However, there were some important stories to follow and things to know about what is going to happen in the consumer tech space
Here’s the thing about CES: Most of the time, the best technology on offer here is conceptual, expensive, out of reach in the future, or all of the above. We’re interested in him not because we expect to find him in the store next week, but because he knows the things we’ll find in stores over the next couple of years. Also, we’re interested in it because the giant screens are dope, especially when it’s bent over.
I think there are some big trends to watch this year. There are those concepts. But there was also very real news about the processor with imminent release dates. AMD, Intel, and Nvidia have all announced components that could make up some great laptops (especially gaming laptops). And then: countless laptops that will use these parts have been announced.
And since this is CES, we have seen the latest TVs come again with Mini LED and the brightest OLED. I have to say with televisions in particular, I am glad to see tech companies compete for live picture quality via high contrast and HDR rather than just higher pixel counts, and I don’t know that the screens are 3D or curved. There is also HDMI 2.1 in the world and all the features that it enables. Wait for the reviews, of course, but I think if you have a TV with some mileage, that would be a great year to upgrade and you’d be amazed at the improvement in quality.
Was there also a capsule-based ice cream machine that people who like fun things and complain about like me? Yeah. There’s always a clever tool that goes off and gets more attention than we expected. The thing about this year’s default CES is that there were fewer to choose from. We had nearly as many large announcements as usual, but we didn’t have the odd corners of the parlor where we found the diamonds in the convention center pretty rough.
I know this is not an experience that the vast majority of people get. For most of you, CES has it Always It was hypothetical. But we will never know what sales deals will not be concluded or wacky spokespeople will not attract attention because hundreds of thousands of people have stayed away from Vegas this year.
Five years ago, I was lucky enough to have a chance to tour the CES showroom with Walt Mossberg, just messing with things that were new at the time. After seeing the CES 2021 summary at the top of this post, I encourage you to take a look at what CES 2016 looks like below. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I hope I can get back to the personal show next year.