If youâ€™re a Geek Squad Agent, youâ€™ve already shifted gears from the new year to new technology. For technology fans everywhere, that means the International Consumer Electronics Show(CES), held every January in Las Vegas Nevada.
CES 2012 will run from January 10th through the 13th and will bring together an estimated 140,000 people from throughout the consumer electronics industry. Retailers, manufacturers, software developers, even a few celebrities, and more will be there to show or be shown their current and upcoming technology. For Geek Squad, this means we get to take a look at all the gadgets and electronics weâ€™ll be setting up for you over the next year.
Some of this yearâ€™s highlights include â€œultrabooksâ€ from a variety of computer makers. The term was created by computer chip-maker Intel to describe higher end ultraportable laptops. These ultrabooks differ from netbooks in that they donâ€™t sacrifice performance and features as they become smaller and lighter. Ultrabooks, with a higher base price than a netbook, are designed for owners who want access to the same power as a regular laptop but with the portability of a netbook.
Another item that I expect to see many makers showing off are Windows 8 devices. Although Microsoft has not officially announced an official release date for this next version of the Windows operating system, but 3rd party hardware development has been underway for some time. Any Windows 8 tablets being shown are sure to capture attention. Windows 8â€™s cross-platform capabilities will interest consumers hoping to share more of their programs and data across their PCs, tablets and even smartphones and gaming systems. In Geek Squad, we love the idea of the connected world, where our tech talks to each other automatically for our benefit.
In 2011, â€œthe cloudâ€ became a mainstream term among tech consumers, and CES promises to show how the electronics market hopes to make your everyday gadgets make better use of it. Of course, not all data storage will be on the Internet, so I expect weâ€™ll also see more devices coming with solid-state drives (SSD) to reduce weight and improve response times when accessing data.
In the home theater world, I expect weâ€™ll see continued improvements with 3D and smart TVs, but I also am hoping to see some of the large screen OLED (organic light-emitting diode) HDTVs that have recently been talked about. OLED screens can display deeper blacks than an LCD resulting in huge contrast benefits and better overall picture quality. Theyâ€™re also thinner, helping to make HDTVs lighter. Up to this point, however, OLED screen creation has not cost effective for the sizes you need for that big screen TV youâ€™d want in your living room. 2012 may start to see that change, and our Geek Squad Home Theater Installers canâ€™t wait.
Finally, I canâ€™t wait to see all unexpected technology that shows up every year at CES. Whether itâ€™s the seat designed to allow you feel the rumble of NASCAR racing, or robot pets designed for hospital waiting rooms, past shows have taught us to never cease to be amazed at how amazing tech makers can be.
Whatever it is, I canâ€™t wait to see what the next 12 months of tech looks like at CES 2012.