Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2007 Trip Report (Day 3)

Read Part 1 and Part 2

Tuesday

My 750v is really getting on my nerves. If you remember (and read yesterday’s report…), I’ve been having a few issues with it this trip. Well this morning the alarm I had set to wake me at 7am didn’t go off. :o[ I thought Microsoft fixed the problem with alarms not firing. If I can’t count on a smartphone to help me keep the appointments that I set, then I really don’t want to be using that particular smartphone. So, I think I’ll be looking elsewhere soon. iPhone maybe? ;o) I need something sooner than 6 months out though.

After I woke up (1hr late!), I was soon out the door and on a shuttle bus back to the convention center. My first stop was back at the Central hall to finish what I had missed the day before.

I wonder if this gaming chair from Pyramat is any better than the HoMedics iCush I recently reviewed?

The advantage of this product is that you don’t have to set it inside another chair to use it.

The Universal Electronics booth had all kinds of remotes on display. I really need to check out one of their high end remotes for my own home theater components at home.

Next up, I had to run back over to the South Hall where I had a meeting with Dynamism. Douglas brought along 2 bags filled with toys to show me.

The first item he handed me was the new Flybook VM. The main feature of this slim Core Duo laptop is the unique display.

It is easily adjustable to almost any viewing angle. The only thing it doesn’t do is fold down completely flat to turn into a tablet.

Next up was the Kohjinsha SA1F00 ultra portable.

As you can see, it does have a display that can rotate and fold down flat. It doesn’t have a touch screen though…

Here’s the Vega UMPC. The display and size were equally nice.

Doug also had the Sony UX90. This is different from the UX50 that they sent me last summer to review. This one has a 32GB Solid State hard drive. I was impressed by the system speed launching applications.

The next item that Doug pulled out of his magic bag of gadgets was the Panasonic HDC-SD1. This little guy has 3 CCDs, a Leica lens and saves to SD cards. At $1600.00 it is pretty expensive, but it does come with a 4gb SDHC card :o)

The Panasonic Wordsgear was an interesting eBook reader. About the size of a paperback book, it has a good display (5.6″ SVGA high resolution (1024×600 211ppi) display and can play movies and music and photos.

I especially liked the page turning mechanism located along the left edge. It was a rubbery pad that you just flick your finger up and down to turn the page of the ebook that you happen to be reading.

Last but not least, he showed me some cutesy solar powered desk toys. The little FlipFlap plant is similar to the Potan Poton that I reviewed from Brando, but this one doesn’t require any water to power it though.

After my meeting with Doug of Dynamism, I trekked over to the North Hall to check out all the fancy cars and car audio gadgets. I’m not really into this particular genre of products, but I you guys would enjoy some pretty car pics, so here you go!

Now that’s a pretty truck!

Hmmm, why do I need an LCD in the car door?

Another shiny car.

And another…

And yet another…

Blue is always nice.

This one wasn’t shiny. The paint job reminded me of a coat of primer. Very Batman-ish.

Retro techno.

LCD displays gone mad!

Ok, that’s enough cars. After a while in this hall, you felt like your brain was going to shake out of your head due to the bass rumbling in all the car speakers!

Weenies getting a free foot and back massages. I’m walking around on a bum ankle, you don’t see me getting any special treatment! ;o)

As I was trying to find my way back out of the hall, I spotted Honda’s large Azimo stage. I had never seen the Azimo robot in the flesh before, so I stuck around for the next show to start.

Pretty soon, the area around the stage was packed with people.

Then Azimo walked out and greeted the audience. Look, he (she?) is waving at me!

There was also a host on stage with the robot, that interacted with Azimo to give the demo. The weirdest thing was hearing Azimo speak. It has a almost creepy (to me at least) female voice. Azimo doesn’t look like a girl to me. Does it to you?

See Asimo in action…


Click on image to play the QuickTime video (2min 44sec,
5.5mb). The video is encoded in the H.264 codec. You will need the latest version of
Quicktime to view it.
VLC is another free viewer.

After the Azimo demo, I grabbed a cheeseburger, chips and a diet Pepsi. Then I wandered around for a few minutes before calling it a day. Goodbye CES showroom floors! I will probably see you again next year.

I grabbed a bunch of freebie magazines on the way out.

I took a taxi back to my hotel room and immediately started surfing for Mac World news from Steve Job’s keynote speech earlier in the day. I was pretty floored when I saw the picture of the iPhone. I almost brought tears to my eyes, it is that pretty. I wish we didn’t have to wait 6 months before getting some hands-on time though.

A couple hours later I headed over to the MGM for a dinner meeting with Palm. The dinner was held at a great Mexican restaurant called Diegos. I sat next to the engineer who was over the 750v and 750, so I was able to tell him my current gripes about my own 750v. He was surprised about the network time not updating. I was ‘happy’ when Dieter Bohn of TreoCentral.com who was sitting next to me, told me that he had the same problem when he arrived here. Yay, it’s not just me!

The dinner was primarily a meet and greet kind of affair. I was surprised that they didn’t ask us for comments or opinions on their products. I did come away with one useful tidbit though. I learned a nifty little trick so that you can turn it off while in an app, so that when you turn it back on, it will power up in that app. As is, if you press the red end call/power button, it will go to the Today screen and then you have to press it again to turn off the phone. So everytime you turn the phone on, it’s at the Today screen. The trick is to press the Option button and then the power button. That will turn off and lock the device into that app. Great tip!

Around 10pm I left MGM and headed back to my hotel where I worked on this article and then turned in for the night. My time here in Las Vegas is almost over. I fly home tomorrow (Wednesday) afternoon. It was a good time this year! I saw some interesting products, met some interesting people and caught up with some old friends. Hope everyone enjoyed the report!

Read Part 1 and Part 2

Posted in: Articles

{ 33 comments… add one }

  • Julie January 8, 2007, 3:22 pm

    Post your comments here on the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2007 Trip Report.

    http://www.the-gadgeteer.com/article/ces_2007

    Just click the POST REPLY button on this page.

    1
  • Hellenek January 8, 2007, 3:50 pm

    Julie,
    Thanx for the ‘experience’! Can’t wait for tomorrow’s update!
    Seriously jealous – not of your soon-to-be-tired feet though :D

    2
  • wirelessandy January 8, 2007, 4:27 pm

    Arrrrrrrrgggh,

    Shiver me timbers! Great report.

    I especially loved the final shot of the swag bag booty!

    I remember trade shows in Vegas with fondness and sore feet. I used to bring a big bag of assorted Dr. Scholl’s cushy shoe inserts for my colleagues. They laughed at first… but not after the first day.

    Keep taking those snapshots, Julie… no matter how mundane you think they are! I love it.

    3
  • JohnKes January 8, 2007, 5:45 pm

    We got a Pandigital 7″ picture frame just before Christmas. It has a good viewing angle range, and a fairly fine resolution screen. It also has ports:
    SD
    CF
    MS
    USB (for USB drives)
    mini USB to connect to a computer. It acts like a 64 MB USB drive when plugged into a computer).
    and an IR remote

    It works a bit funky – it wants a USB 2.0 port, but when I plug it into a USB 2.0 port, my port runs it at USB 1.1 Also, I have a tough time working with files on the internal memory – I can’t modify or rename the files.

    Still, the two included frames look great. I’m satisfied with my purchase.

    4
  • joeru January 8, 2007, 7:13 pm

    Great report! What equipment did you bring with you on the trip?

    – Joe

    5
  • JohnKes January 8, 2007, 7:57 pm

    Great question. The last time I traveled, I had a bag full of chargers. I just got an iGo Ice 90. It came with a dozen tips, one of which fits my laptop. Now I have to collect tips for my other gadgets.

    6
  • anson22 January 8, 2007, 8:50 pm

    Yea Julie, take a pic of the gear you brought along with ya on this trip…

    Just curious, thanks.:D

    7
  • moofrank January 8, 2007, 8:58 pm

    Ballys is ok. If you ever get a chance, though, splurge for a room at the Venetian.

    8
  • Julie January 8, 2007, 9:38 pm

    Hi guys :)
    I’m back in my room for a little rest until another ‘party’ later tonight. My feet are not all that sore. But another part of my of my body is. I’ll have to write about that in my Monday report :)

    JohnKes:
    I think their 10″ frame is using some type of new LCD technology. It was really nice.

    Joeru & anson22:
    Good idea. I’ll add that to Monday’s report. I have to gripe about one of my gadgets anyway…

    moofrank:
    Splurge huh? Bally’s is costing me over $200 a night. How much does the Venetian cost? I’ve stayed at the Luxor, Aladdin, Excalibur and now Bally’s.

    9
  • isobutane January 8, 2007, 9:38 pm

    When I checked Ebay this morning and saw a lot of OQO Model 01+ listed, I deduced that something was up. Woot put the 01+ on a major discount two days ago. I visited the OQO web site and my jaw dropped at what I saw there.

    This is THE computer I have been waiting for.

    I ordered one this afternoon…from the soup to the nuts, the whole package. My Fujitsu P1510D and Dell Axim X51v will both be going up for sale on Ebay.

    Holy mother of pearl. OQO…BANG, ZOOM, to the moon, home run, shoots and SCORES!!!!

    Mark

    10
  • moofrank January 8, 2007, 9:49 pm

    I was at the Venetian for a conference back in early December, and it was $210.00 + about 20-25 in taxes + $10 / 24 hours internet. They only do suites. Mine had a sunken den with iron railings, a massive bathroom with a full bath and a shower.

    Moo,
    Frank

    11
  • Julie January 8, 2007, 10:41 pm

    Mark:
    I hope to get more one on one time with the new OQO tomorrow when I meet with Dynamism. This new version does look super nice… but looks can be decieving. I know how much I wanted to like their first version and then was disappointed.

    moofrank:
    Wow, sounds very nice! Did you wander around the shop area? I love the way they paint the ceiling to look like a blue sky with clouds.

    12
  • isobutane January 8, 2007, 10:47 pm

    Julie wrote:

    Mark:
    I hope to get more one on one time with the new OQO tomorrow when I meet with Dynamism. This new version does look super nice… but looks can be decieving. I know how much I wanted to like their first version and then was disappointed.

    Oh, I know that for sure…but it will be at least eight weeks before it ships, and I can always cancel the order if the reviews say that it is not worth it. It looks VERY promising at this point, so I will hedge my bets. Maybe it will take my mind off the fact that, despite almost desperate measures since release day, I have not been able to get a Wii!

    Mark

    13
  • SQLDba January 9, 2007, 3:04 am

    Julie,

    Would be interested in knowing what you brought in the way of gadgets on this trip.

    Your computer / phone / camera / gadget bag – what ‘cha traveling with??

    14
  • SQLDba January 9, 2007, 3:20 am

    Mark,

    Would love to know what you will be using the OQO for – and why you think this is the holy grail?

    I will admit that it is a very nice looking unit – and I’m stunned that they are able to run Vista on it – (although I wonder how much of that is a marketing ploy)

    In fact it looks great – until you click on the “Buy Now” button and see they are looking for $1500 for one.

    I hate it when back seat drivers post and say “for that kind of money you could buy….” but jeez – that’s one heck of a chunk of change.

    I won’t deny that having a full fledged computer as your “main brain” – carry everywhere system would really be nice. In fact, I used a 12″ iBook for my PDA etc for about 6 months – and still miss it.

    ultimately, I’m just looking for more reasons I can give my wife as to why I NEED one too :)

    BTW – have you seen the Nokia N800 internet tablet that has just been released? At $400 – it looks pretty interesting as well…..

    Now to see what Steve Jobs has up his sleeve in the morning….

    15
  • moofrank January 9, 2007, 4:36 am

    The interior scenic decor is generally great. Paris also has a nice faux interior/exterior. The tragic thing is that you cannot actually seem to get any French food there beyond crepes and snails.

    The Venetian canal/mall also has an oxygen bar which is a kind of surreal experience.

    16
  • JKreft January 9, 2007, 2:01 pm

    Just a couple of thoughts on the Fujitsu ScanSnap…

    Next up was a product from Fujitsu called the ScanSnap. It’s basically a color scanner that can scan 18 page per minute. Who cares you might be thinking… Well what makes this scanner cool is the fact that it scans in duplex. In other words, it scans both sides of the page. No flipping required. Nice huh? I thought so too.

    We just got the fi-5110EOXM, the model before the one you saw, where I work. It’s similar but a bit slower (only 15 double-sided pages per minute). I use it with DEVONthink Pro Office, a wonderful Mac program that includes built-in support for the ScanSnap line and OCR software. It was easy to set up. I created a new database, put some documents in the scanner, pressed the scan button, and have been happily putting my paper documents that had been in a pile into a fully searchable database. I’m using my iBook G4 to do all this.

    We’ll be putting our church’s minutes and newsletters into a searchable database that will let others be able to search this shelf of records online.

    Check out the software for more details. While I’ve had a few “jams” (usually because of bent paper around where the document had been stapled) most pages go through quickly and quietly. If you have a bunch of papers and would like to have an easy way to be able to search through and find specific information in them I recommend using these products together.

    JKreft

    17
  • isobutane January 9, 2007, 5:28 pm

    SQLDba wrote:

    Mark,

    Would love to know what you will be using the OQO for – and why you think this is the holy grail?

    I will admit that it is a very nice looking unit – and I’m stunned that they are able to run Vista on it – (although I wonder how much of that is a marketing ploy)

    In fact it looks great – until you click on the “Buy Now” button and see they are looking for $1500 for one.

    I hate it when back seat drivers post and say “for that kind of money you could buy….” but jeez – that’s one heck of a chunk of change.

    I won’t deny that having a full fledged computer as your “main brain” – carry everywhere system would really be nice. In fact, I used a 12″ iBook for my PDA etc for about 6 months – and still miss it.

    ultimately, I’m just looking for more reasons I can give my wife as to why I NEED one too :)

    BTW – have you seen the Nokia N800 internet tablet that has just been released? At $400 – it looks pretty interesting as well…..

    Now to see what Steve Jobs has up his sleeve in the morning….

    I am buying the OQO Model 02 becuase:

    1) It gives me a lot more freedom in the classroom. I can use it to very effectively take attendance, do my presentations and do all those classroom management tasks with it in my hand as I go around the class. It will also cut down substantially on the bulk I have to carry around.

    2) It will make it a lot easier to do my education conference presentations due to the fact that it will fit into my gear bag with all my other junk.

    3) It will be the perfect travel partner, especially when I go storm chasing (yes, Stormchasers is great stuff, Julie).

    I have wanted a full computer in the same form factor as my HP 200LX since I first had my 200LX. I still have it, too!!! :)

    I had the Nokia 770 and was ultimately disappointed with it. I replaced it with a Dell X51v, which is nice, but the OQO will replace that.

    Mark

    18
  • fishgal January 9, 2007, 5:33 pm

    The mystery item you saw looks alot like a igallop type devise i saw a brookstone. It’s for exercise on your abs etc. You turn it on and have to stay on. It mimic’s riding a horse. :D

    19
  • moofrank January 9, 2007, 6:31 pm

    Regarding the Versalaser: Sears has just released a CNC router for $1800 that does some of what the Veraslaser does. The resolution is not as high, but it does look like an almost affordable geek toy. I just caved and ordered that one.

    And the Internet tablets may have trouble. Apple’s new phone has Wifi and Safari…. It is certainly making my beloved Treo a lot less interesting. Sigh.

    Moo,
    Frank

    20
  • Julie January 9, 2007, 9:43 pm

    fishgal:
    Thanks for clearing that mystery up for me!

    moofrank:
    Please let us all know what you think about the Sears router after you’ve had time to play with it!

    And I agree that tablets maybe doomed after what I’m reading about the iPhone. It really sucks that we have to wait 6 months to actually play with one though!

    21
  • SQLDba January 10, 2007, 3:15 am

    I “watched” the Apple keynote via livetime text streaming w/ snapshots – and I have to say, I was blown away by the iPhone. It seems like everything the Newton wanted to be. Having owned the 120, 130, 2000 and 2100 versions of the Newton – I have a soft spot for anything that resembles an Apple handheld :)

    I’m keeping my fingers crossed that they or a 3rd party comes out with an Outlook / Exchange client for email. Without that – it severely limits it’s usefulness as a business tool. Push IMAP is nice – but not quite the same. Clearly with the music player, iPhoto etc – the iPhone is not targeted toward the business user, but I think plenty would buy one just for the improved web / phone features.

    At first I was bummed by the 6 month wait too Julie – but knowing how active the Mac developer community is – and assuming this truly is running a version of OSX – when this phone is finally released – there will be a slew of applications waiting for us.

    I can’t say I have been this excited about a peice of technology in a long long time.

    22
  • isobutane January 10, 2007, 9:57 am

    SQLDba wrote:

    At first I was bummed by the 6 month wait too Julie

    Imagine how bummed out those of us on CDMA networks are! :) My New Every Two comes due from Verizon this March. Gotta stick with the big V…they are the only carrier with any coverage in my neck of the woods. No iPhone for us!

    Mark

    23
  • joeru January 10, 2007, 8:33 pm

    Julie:

    Thanks for all the info from the show. Regarding your 750v, I am told that Cingular has a different ROM in their 750 than the 750v has. It should be possible to try that ROM if they fixed some issues.

    I will try a Cingular 750 next week, so I can see if I have the same time zone and alarm issue you have with the 750v.

    I am currently using an 8525 and found it much more usable after a few weeks of use. The first week, it felt very strange. I also installed a few applications that I like alot:

    – AgendaOne is great for one-handed use of the calendar and contacts
    – PTTfix allows me to use the PTT button to toggle silencing the phone
    – TXTMan is a free threaded SMS application
    – Bluemusic allows me to send all audio to my bluetooth headset. Great for listening to Audible books. They are at http://www.teksoftco.com/. That should work on your 750 as well.

    – Joe

    24
  • isobutane January 10, 2007, 9:04 pm

    I canceled my OQO Model 02 order today…the Vulcan Flipstart web site underwent a change today. I would much rather have a clamshell micronote than a slab.

    Thank you so much, Julie, for these updates…I would love to go to CES, but my teaching job sort of kills the chances of attending. :)

    Mark

    25
  • Julie January 11, 2007, 2:40 am

    joeru:

    I asked a Palm person last night if I could update the ROM in my Vodafone version with the Cingular ROM. He said that he didn’t think so. Seems strange to me. I don’t know why there would be an issue. Hmmmm… But the problem with alarms not firing is a Windows Mobile issue. An issue that has plagued Pocket PCs for years. I thought it had been fixed as I’d not noticed the problem until I really needed to count on the alarm. Grrr. My wake up alarm didn’t work again today. :(

    Mark:
    CES is fun but also overwhelming! I’m back home now. Just got in the house about 10mins ago :) There’s no place like home :)

    26
  • SQLDba January 11, 2007, 6:06 am

    Julie – there is the official way to update your ROM – which probably will never happen – and there is the unofficial way)

    Spend some time on the XDA-developers.com website. There is a ton of information here about how to update your ROM as well as the tools and the ROM that you’ll need.

    You’ll discover that you will probably need a couple of programs – 1 to unlock the phone for software updates and then the ROM.

    Chances are you will also find people on the forum who have already done the update and can give you a feel for what you gain by updating the ROM. Past experience with Cingular ROMs have shown me that you often times lose a little. Cingular tends to have a bloated ROM – with the xpress mail, music, video etc applications – so you’ll want to study this.

    Also – I’ve never had a problem doing upgrades like this – but be clear about the risks before you do anything. You paid way to much for your 750 to turn it into a paperweight.

    Also – wondering about your use of the 680? Are we going to see a review of that phone anytime soon?

    27
  • joeru January 11, 2007, 2:10 pm

    Julie: I have not had a problem with the alarm (set via Settings/Clock & Alarms) on the 8525. I just tested it again by setting an alarm, turning the pocket pc off (not a full powerdown, so the phone is on, but the screen is off) and the alarm (vibrate + alarm sound) worked fine. I have had problems with earlier PocketPCs, so perhaps some have the problem and others don’t?

    Looks like some people have put Cingular ROMs on 750vs. Check out http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=280500

    Let me know if there is something you want me to check on the Cingular 750.

    – Joe

    28
  • Julie January 11, 2007, 2:39 pm

    SQLDba & joeru:

    I don’t think I’ll really gain anything by trying to do the ROM update to go from Vodafone to Cingular. Now that I’m back home, I really don’t care that the time might not update again via the network time. My problems with appt times not correctly updating when the time changes is not a ROM issue, it’s a Windows Mobile issue.

    Regarding the alarms, I don’t use the Settings/Clock & Alarms applet. I use the Calendar and just make an appointment. BTW: while typing this I just did two test alarms and both worked fine. Go figure!

    The 680 review is going to be delayed because the device I was sent seems to have some hardware issues. They are going to swap me out for another one.

    29
  • dougom January 29, 2007, 7:21 pm

    Julie, did the Dynamism guys give you any additional info on the Pansonic WordsGear? Like when it will be available, what format eBooks it will read, whether one can convert to its eBook format, what type of music and video files it plays, and so on?

    30
  • Julie January 30, 2007, 1:55 am

    The Panasonic Wordsgear uses a proprietary format for e-books.
    Dynamism is supposed to receive the conversion software to
    load PDF’s and word documents on the device. It is also capable of viewing
    JPEG’s and playing MPEG4 video.

    31
  • fondoo April 25, 2007, 2:24 pm

    after seeing pictures of the nokia n800 on your website. i did some research and eventually went out and picked up a nokia n800. i gotta say, i love it. i no longer even use my laptop anymore. the n800 can surf the net, chat with icq/msn/aim/yahoo/and google, check my email, listen mp3, watch video, and stream video from the internet.

    32
  • Julie April 25, 2007, 3:15 pm

    fondoo:

    I wish the n800 had a GSM radio built into it instead of just the WiFi though.
    Is the screen large enough to be comfortable for web surfing?

    33

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