Tablets and Netbooks to Be Electronics Show Stars

Manila Bulletin, January 6, 2010 | Go to article overview

Tablets and Netbooks to Be Electronics Show Stars


SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) – Sleeker, smarter mobile phones, tablets, and netbooks will be stars at next week’s premier Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, as firms bring out their latest gadgets to court the Internet crowd.While this year’s CES will be smaller due to the global economic crisis, 110,000 people are registered to attend and the number of first-time exhibitors tops 330 for the first time.A Google “Nexus One” smart phone based on Android software is likely to ignite CES buzz even though the device is to debut at the Internet giant’s headquarters in California two days before CES starts Thursday.CES goers are eager to see whether the Google branded phone lives up to expectations in a scenario reminiscent of the Palm Pre launch at the annual electronics show last year.“All eyes are on the Nexus One,” said analyst Rob Enderle of Enderle Group in Silicon Valley.“The other thing of course is the tablets. A wave of Android tablets will be hitting at CES, and it looks like Apple’s is coming at the end of the month.”A tablet computer to be launched at CES by India-based Notion Inc. is generating the most interest due to attributes such as paper-like screen graphics for easy reading outdoors and full-color resolution.By waiting a few more weeks to launch a tablet, Apple will be able to assess how competitors position themselves in the market and adapt its strategy accordingly.Electronic books, or e-books, will also be rolled out in abundance at CES.Industry tracker Forrester Research predicts that six million e-readers will be sold in the United States alone in 2010, doubling the number bought in the country the prior year.An eagerly-awaited QUE e-reader by Plastic Logic will premier Thursday in an invitation-only press conference slated prior to the opening of the show floor.“We are going to be awash in e-books,” Enderle said. “The contrast between tablets and e-books is going to be pronounced.”Lightweight, bare-bones laptops referred to as netbooks or “ultraportables” will also be a rage at CES as computer makers debut offerings tailored for a market that has boomed during hard times. …

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