We’re going to have some live coverage from the Consumer Electronics Show 2011 in Las Vegas today, and you can expect it to have one major theme: from tablets to TVs to cars, just about everything will be connected to apps, in some form or another.
Already, waves of announcements from Vegas are spilling out over the entertainment world. With all the new tablets and phones being showed off at CES, Android is sure to be a word that’s said quite a bit over the next five days. We’re expecting to see quite a few new devices that run Google’s (GOOG) mobile operating system, from companies like Motorola and Samsung (005930.KS).
With all the new Android products, don’t be surprised if we hear something interesting from Apple (AAPL) this week so that Google doesn’t dominate the spotlight. Android has been closing the gap on Apple’s mobile operating system market share in recent months, and a flood of new devices carrying Android has a pretty good chance of eliciting some kind of press conference from Steve Jobs.
Just as interesting, though, are the things we’re already not hearing about Android. LG (066570.KS) held a press conference this morning about its various connected devices -- smart TVs, smart appliances and smart phones -- and the word “Andoid” never came up. That’s an interesting development, and a pretty good indication that LG is going its own way in operating systems and app development. We know its upcoming smart TV will include its own app store; if it’s not the Android Market, then it’s probably something proprietary to LG.
Smart TVs like LG’s are already coming out to challenge Apple TV and Google TV, two major players in the realm of connected entertainment, which are proving that TV with Internet and app capabilities definitely have a market of their own. We’re thinking there are going to be several companies showing off high-end connected TVs, and a lot of them are going to have app stores and give access to cool services like Hulu+ and Netflix (NFLX).
And, of course, there are the new tablet PCs and smart phones, demo stations for which will litter the convention floor. Android will be the buzz word there, too: thanks to the iPad helping prime consumers for tabs, lots of companies are priming entries into the market, and a whole lot of them run on Google’s OS. Sony (SNE) has a press conference today, where it could talk about its oft-rumored PlayStation phone. It’s not expected to happen, but who knows -- photos of the machine keep leaking out, so anything’s possible.
This is a big year for CES, though. Lots of companies have cool new things to show off and new ideas to share. We’re about to get many more options for electronics in a lot more categories. It’s a good time to get excited. We’ll be keeping an eye on the developments from Vegas for the next few days, so check back here for updates.