CES 2012 roundup

Drawing robot at a deskI’ve been back from CES for a couple of weeks now, and I think I’m finally over it. Sure enough, there were record crowds, so I was right about that. Best highlights:

  • Justin Bieber appeared at the TOSY Robotics booth. I would have thought that the over-18 attendee requirement would have locked out his fans, but there was a modest crowd forming as I walked past. I was more impressed by their drawing robot (pictured here). I wonder if these folks saw Hugo?
  • Earth, Wind & Fire performed a stunning, underpromoted 30-minute set on the Sony campus. (Seriously, I’ve been to other shows that were smaller than just the Sony booth.) Now we’re talking my generation.
  • Dream Multimedia, the folks behind the Dreambox FTA receiver, had a booth. The folks there said they’re planning a push into North America. More on that in a future post here.

Unlike some previous years, I attended CES as just a plain old “industry affiliate”. There’s no magic to this; if you want to go next year, I already told you how you can qualify. If you want to know what it’s like to attend CES as press, Rob Beschizza explained it well in a post a couple of days ago at BoingBoing. I would only add that if you’re not press, you don’t need to come on Day 0 (as he puts it), which means that you need at least Day 2 to see everything on the floor. Day 3 is probably unnecessary, and Day 4 is garbage day, as I said last year.

More photos from the show:

Giant plush Hopper advertising Dish Network in front of CES

Dish Network pulled out all the stops in promoting its new Hopper whole-house technology. In addition to this 25-foot plush in front of CES, Dish had huge ads in the official programs and billboard trucks circling the show.

Little DirecTV dish on huge uplink trailer

Radiation Hazard? Not for this little DirecTV dish. Do you suppose that sign was meant for the huge satellite uplink trailer instead?

Woman on CES Show Floor dressed as The Stump. That's right, like a tree stump.

Easily the most frightening thing I encountered at CES this year. This woman wandered the show floor promoting The Stump, which is an iPad stand. You can watch video of her in action here but don't blame me if it gives you nightmares too.