What is CES 2013?
CES is the Consumer Electronics Show and is one of the biggest technology shows of the year, often giving us the first glance at what will be going on sale later in the year. This year we expect to see lots of new TVs, laptops, tablets, mobile phones and more, but what are the highlights we are expecting.
You can follow all our live coverage once the show kicks off with our CES category page, but for a look at what we expect from the show read on.
Samsung Galaxy S4 or a flexible Samsung phone
There’s been a few rumours that Samsung will show off its latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S4, at this year’s show. We don’t think this is likely to happen, as Samsung has moved to holding its own event for new flagships, but that doesn’t mean it will be completely quiet on the phone front.
It’s no secret Samsung has been working on flexible phones for a while now and 2013 could be the year we finally see a mass production model. Using bendy plastic screens and an OLED display, it would be possible to create a phone that can bend and flex, as well as being harder to break. Whether it will be ready for CES or not is anyone’s guess, but it’s something we are going to see sooner rather than later.
Ultra high-definition TVs, aka very big expensive TVs
CES is always a big show for TVs with last year seeing 4K TVs make their debut. This year 4K is back, but with a new name. 4K will now commonly be known as Ultra High Definition (UHD) and manufacturers have come to a loose agreement that these sets will need at least 8 million pixels and a resolution of at least 3,840 x 2160.
Unfortunately, the price of these TVs is likely to remain in the extortionate category so Samsung’s 85-inch effort will be very much in the ‘if only’ part of our wish lists – although considering there’s no content available in UHD yet, it’s not much of a loss.
Touchscreens, touchscreens everywhere…
Windows 8 is here and – just like at IFA 2012 back in September – all the latest laptops and desktops are going to come with touchscreens to make the most of the new software. We’ll also probably see all new ways of twisting, folding, bending and converting laptops and desktops into tablets – very few of which will be practical or well designed.
WiGig – a bit like wi-fi but really, really fast
One potentially very interesting new technology that will definitely be shown off at CES by various companies is WiGig. This is a new wireless standard that will allow much faster transfer speeds over wi-fi, while also being compatible with current wi-fi technology. Apparently, WiGig provides data transfer rates of up to 7Gbps making it 10 times faster than other wi-fi technologies.
The new standard operates in the unlicensed 60Ghz band and while it might not have too many apparent consumer uses, it could pave the way for high quality public wi-fi as well open the door for new data hungry uses.
New tablets – will someone defeat the iPad?
Tablets are now firmly embedded in the mainstream and we’re going to see a whole lot more of them in 2013, starting at CES. After the success of the Google Nexus 7, Asus – the maker of the Nexus 7 – is likely to come out with its own version of the tablet featuring a microSD slot to expand the memory.
There’s whispers that Samsung is going to take on the Asus Transformer Prime range by releasing a 13-inch tablet that comes with a keyboard dock, while there’s also a suggestion that we may see Intel enter the market in the shape of its Red Ridge project, which is said to be a tablet.
What won’t be at CES 2013
Predicting what we will see at shows like this can be difficult, but here are some things that we definitely won’t be seeing this year at CES.
Microsoft is normally a major part of CES but 2013 will be the first year without them. Now Windows 8 is out on the market the company looks to be taking it easy this year.
BlackBerry maker RIM is another company that hasn’t bought any floor space at the show so we won’t be seeing its new operating system BlackBerry 10 quite yet. However, the company has confirmed it will be holding an event at the end of January, so we won’t have to wait too long to see the first phones running the software.
Not one to mix it up with other companies, Apple sticks to its own events so we won’t be seeing any new iThings in January. In fact we might have to wait until March until we see something new bearing Apple’s logo.