4K Blu-ray but no Michael Bay
OK, so we haven’t quite got Christmas out of the way, yet, but the electronics and technology industries wait for no man so it’s time to start thinking ahead to CES 2015.
We’ll be out in Las Vegas right from the opening chaos of the Press Day on January 5th and throughout the week from the hurly burly of the showfloor. In fact, we’ll be at the CES Unveiled event on Sunday 4th January where we’ll get a sneak peek of what some of the exhibitors will be showing on their stands.
Following that, we have already booked in stand tours with LG and Panasonic and we’ll be sure to be visiting plenty more to bring you up-to-the-minute video coverage and comment.
Last year we couldn’t move for 4K TVs and, if anything, we’re likely to see even more of Ultra HD this time around. With the budget brands already offering 4K TVs at silly prices, it’s open season at the moment and with both TCL and Hisense holding their own press events this year, we’re expecting some even more affordable 4K TVs to be announced.
We’re also hoping that LG’s almost complete domination of the OLED TV market will at least be put under some pressure with some others trying their hands – even if they will be using LG panels in whatever they come up with.
Well it finally happened; the confirmation of a 4K Blu-ray format was hardly heralded with a great fanfare but it was still excellent news that it is to be a reality. We’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve predicted CES would be the place to launch the format but we’re at least fairly sure that Las Vegas will be the place we’ll finally see a 4K disc player; and if one of the major manufacturer’s has one to show, you can bet the others will too.
That said, we also expect the 4K big boys to announce yet more exclusive content partnership deals as they look to extend revenues beyond the actual hardware itself. If we don’t get a 4K Blu-ray player this year, we’d almost say it won’t be worth the bother as what little content there is could already be available to stream. The convenience and relatively low costs streaming services provide are likely to win out in any case but we would like to see a strong physical format too.
Please let there be 4K Blu-ray PlayersThe keynote address, this year, will be from Boo-Keun Yoon, president and CEO of Samsung Electronics, where he is slated to discuss connected devices, the future of the Internet of Things and the vision of the smart home. We’re presuming Michael Bay won’t be making an appearance this year but it would probably make it more interesting if he were to.
Audio products generally take a bit of backseat ride at CES, in terms of coverage, mostly because it’s next to impossible to hear anything properly but we’d expect to see plenty more multiroom audio solutions, soundbars/soundbases and wireless speakers by the boatload. AV Receivers also struggle to make their presence felt at CES but with the recent developments in Dolby Atmos and Auro3D, we might hear more this time around. It also seems certain that that DTS will be providing more information on their own multi-dimensional audio solution and it’s quite possible some manufacturer partnership deals will be announced in Vegas.
Wearables will be another major focus and perhaps 2015 will be the year they’ll begin to show some real worth. We’d expect to see more ‘standalone’ smartwatches (those that don’t need to be paired to a smartphone) in 2015 and there will be a few new ones to look at in Vegas. It’s probably in the health monitoring area where wearables are showing real promise and we’d expect more developments there, but the industry has its work cut out in selling the idea of wearables as an indispensable item to the public, as things stand; Apple has yet to convince their adoring public that the Apple Watch is worth buying in to, to give some perspective
Expect plenty of connected/smart home stuff. Again.As the crossovers between the technology and automobile industries increase, brand new for CES 2015 is the Vehicle Intelligence Marketplace. The Marketplace will feature autonomous-driving, collision-avoidance and vehicle-communication technologies. CEA said exhibitors in the area will conduct track demonstrations within the parking lot as well as on-the-road demos. Eleven manufacturers will exhibit at CES: Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Ford, GM, Hyundai, Mazda, Mercedes, MINI, Toyota and Volkswagen. Automotive exhibits will cover more than 165,000 net square feet of exhibit space, up 17 percent over the 2014 show.
So there we have some of our predictions and expectations but we’d love to know what you’d like to see and anticipate will unfold. So please use the comments section below and look out for our wall-to-wall coverage, beginning Monday 5th January 2015.
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