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Monday, January 09, 2012

CES 2012 Preview - What to Expect at the Show

The international Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2012 will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada this week. Consumer and enterprise technology industry analysts will use this exhibition to determine where all the leading vendors are focusing their attention for the coming year.

Ovum has shared some pre-show trend predictions as follows:

Consumer Market Related Trends at CES 2012

Media Tablets: Expect more Google Android "Ice Cream Sandwich" devices, as well as Samsung's Windows 8 tablet. OEMs will pursue the high-margin enterprise tablet market -- as well as the consumer market --so expect to see Mobile Device Management capabilities and partnerships.

Connected Home: The DECE will be promoting new OEM and retailer partnerships. Ultra high definition TVs will be demonstrated. Smart TV application platforms and new user interface models for EPG and metadata navigation are also likely, as well as media sharing over DLNA. Google TV and Android STB OEM/ODM deals will be announced.

AT&T Dominance: Expect AT&T to be the dominant U.S. service provider making news, with several major device launches. Expect little from Verizon Wireless, which had lots of device launches last year -- plus, they will likely have more announcements at MWC, next month.

Mobile DTV: Expect to see more mobile DTV announcements, including a focus on in-car integration and the Metro PCS announcement. But there are execution risks -- such as the ecosystem, business model, OTT competition, lack of consumer demand and spectrum allocation challenges.

BlackBerry Platform: Expect RIM to showcase its BB Tablet OS 2.0, though it is not clear if they will also use the event to launch the Playbook 2 or announce it at a later date. RIM will likely not demo BB 10 at the show -- they will wait until MWC.

Enterprise Market Related Trends at CES 2012

Tablets  and BYOD: Expect a number of Google Android related announcements, with some targeting the Apple iPad lead in the enterprise media tablet market. Mobile device management aand data security capabilities will be part of their offering. Expect to see multiple UI personas on a single device, enabling user access permissions when connected to enterprise resources.

Ultrabook PCs: Given the 2011 netbook market results, plus category threat from both smartphones and media tablets, expect a large number of PC manufacturers to announce ultrabook devices. These will mimic the MacBook Air. However, a multitude of Android tablets will make it difficult for new ultrabook availability to translate into significant market share in 2012.

Microsoft Windows: Expect more insight into Windows 8. Microsoft will likely enable the enterprise to manage the accelerating employee-provisioned PC and tablet trend. Expect clarity over which apps will run on ARM architecture and whether old Windows apps will still run on the new Windows 8 tablets. Plus, details on applications for its Kinect-based gesture interface in the enterprise.

Dell Strategy: They have apparently scaled back their presence at CES this year. Expect them to demonstrate a new strategy for the home market. Watch for a likely consumer IT angle for the enterprise.

Wi-Fi 802.11ac: An important development for all IP networking, Broadcom is rumored to demo pre-standardization versions of the updated WiFi standard that will take wireless LANs to 1Gbps. Expect to see router devices this year that will anticipate the final protocol.

Do you have an expectation for significant trends at CES 2012? Please do comment...