The 2012 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) came and went with promises of smarter and thinner mobile products that are always working in the background to meet your particular needs. Depending on who you read, CES 2012 was either the year of the TV, the year of the smartphone, the year of applications, or the year of Samsung. The show wowed some and bored some and offered up a range of new products that are coming soon to consumers, businesses and stores. Here are a few highlights:
Smartphones – This year 21 new phones debuted at CES. 17 of those phones were Androids including five Samsung Galaxy phones, the Droid 4, Nokia Lumia 9000, LG Spectrum and more. At the show, Verizon Wireless announced that all future smartphones sold by Verizon will be 4G equipped. I’ll take a closer look at some of the key phones released in a future post.
Tablets – This might be the year of the tablets…again. While many folks predicted 2011 as the year of the tablet, it appears the penetration of tablets into the consumer and business markets will make greater strides in 2012. More than 100 tablets were unveiled at CES with some impressive debuts including the Asus Memo 370T, Blackberry’s Playbook, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7, the Toshiba Excite, and a Lenovo with an Intel chip that wowed the crowd. (For a comprehensive list of all new tablets at CES, see BGR.)
TVs – Many were awed by the stunning OLED technology on display in TVs like the LG 55″ television and the Samsung 55″ television. Get ready to see, hear, read about OLED TVs and why they’re the next big thing in television. These TVs are thin (some merely 4 mm thick), application driven (streaming media, social media, online access), and voice and gesture controlled.
Unusual – There were also plenty of unusual offerings on display like the Samsung Smart Window. It’s a 22″ transparent window that is also an LCD panel. You can look through to see how fast your grass is growing, but you can also use it as a computer display to check out Facebook, Twitter, weather updates, and more. It can create personal shades as well as adjust the display to lighting levels in the room.
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Apps – Everything has applications now. From TVs, to tablets, to smartphones and more, apps are becoming the way we all customize our always-on devices to support the unique ways we use them. More than ever, consumer electronics appears to be entering a time of customization where our products come ready to adapt to our requirements. One fun little app that was on display was a remote control car designed to work in conjunction with a remote control app on the iPhone. With this app, you can control a toy car by simply gesturing.
There are a range of other new apps, tablets and smartphones worth discussing that I’ll try to highlight in the coming days.
Update: I forgot to mention the unveiling of the Behringer iNuke Boom, the ultimate iPhone speaker. For a sound explosion, the savvy shopper must have an eight foot long, 1000 watt speaker weighing 700 pounds and costing $29,999.