Archives for: January 2009


Permalink 00:18:36, by Eric Baber Email , 231 words, 54473 views   English (EU)
Categories: Events

CES Keynote speech: Alan Mulally, Chairman and CEO of Ford

Keynote: Alan Mulally, Chairman and CEO of Ford. 8 January 2009, afternoon

Ford Work Solutions + Sync: large screens, voice-activated, wireless devices in cars. Music, Office apps etc.

“Automotive leader in Connectivity”. Infotainment.

Link up with Sony for hardware

Mobile phone central as well

“We're a car company, but we're learning to act like an electronics company”. Working with partnerships

Unifying home and office etc. Culturally specific?

Cell phones will always evolve quicker than cars.

MyKey – key that works in conjunction with car which can be programmed by parents for e.g. Highest speed, stereo volume etc.

HD radio in 2010

Car can automatically dial 911 after accident. Speaks to operator or lets you do it.

Vehicle health report – informs user of state of vehicle

Traffic, directions services. Gathers data from millions of cars such as speed and location in order to plot traffic and reroute drivers

Systems will detect whether your phone has a data plan. If so, it'll stream more services through that plan.

Sync will be able to access Apple apps etc

Access Facebook etc messages through voice commands

Lots of info about vehicle economy so that driver can adjust driving

Ford Focus more economic than some hybrids

Configurable displays in future. “Intelligent” systems, giving driver information depending on habits, time of day etc etc. E.g. At lunchtime, suggesting local restaurant that suits preferences.

Sync available globally in 2010. Europe first, then Asia

Permalink 00:16:12, by Eric Baber Email , 1381 words, 34599 views   English (EU)
Categories: Events

CES Keynote speech: Gary Shapiro, Sir Howard Stringer

At the keynote speech of Day 1 (8 January 2009). The speakers are Gary Shapiro, President and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association, and Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman and CEO of Sony Corp. There are 3D glasses on the seats which should make it a fun session! 3D glasses have come a long way by the way – no longer are they cardboard and one lens green/one lense red, but they're hard plastic and both lenses are the same colour, a sort of coffee colour.

Very entertainment-focused intro – movie trailer while getting seated, videos of PSP and games etc.

New service launched – Yoostar. Allows user to personalise old films (e.g. Putting own head into films, splicing in new content etc).

Shapiro: recession time for innovation – new inventions, re-examining what we're doing.

In day of 24-hour news easy to focus on micro, need to look at macro.

Entertainment industry not going cap-in-hand to government, unlike automobile industry. Need to be self-sufficient.

In 1930s radio blossomed, helped lift Great Depression by creating jobs in itself, help spirit, help disseminate information = knowledge.

Industry has had 7 years of uninterrupted growth. Only paralysis during 9/11. 5.4% growth in 2008, not quite the 6% anticipated, but still positive. 2009 – revenue growth unlikely, flat growth. Unit sales will grow but prices will fall, i.e. No revenue growth. Larger leisure costs (e.g. Vacations) likely to be cut by consumers, larger spending as a result on smaller-cost items (films, games etc)

Obama has won on message of change. Change defines entertainment industry; consumers' willingness to engage in change heralds good news for the industry.

Obama first digital president, can offer US industry opportunity to grow through innovation, globality..

CEA's job to educate politicians who while they're trying to legislate for technology may not be sufficiently knowledgeable about it. CEA has created an “innovation Checklist” for politicians (“does it create jobs? Does it spur new technologies? Does it encourage the best and brightest to come to the US? Does it reward risk taking? Doest it promote exports? Will it help deploy broadband?”)

Green electronics big growth field.

How many technologies have been stifled by fear of litigation? Sony & CEO had to take to court battle for devices that will allow users to record TV shows.

Transition to Digital TV will be complete by February 17th 2009 (US). Government got involved in transition by offering coupons for digital converter boxes.

DTV ideal for new applications, not just one-way TV broadcasting.

CES more than just platform for launching new products. Networking key component – single most important platform for business making for the industry.

Sony – recently named one of 10 most innovative global companies


Intro – trailer of Angels and Demons, with Tom Hanks (a Sony film of course). Tom Hanks comes on stage to introduce Stringer. Very entertaining and quite unflattering to Sony! Lots of scripted product placement which he did with a LOT of tongue-in-cheek.

Good rapport between Tom and Stringer who's just come on.

Demonstrating new glasses in development that replaces a screen basically. Allows you to watch a film while seeing reality as well. Also gaming etc.

Excellent exit by Tom Hanks – I wouldn't want to have been in Stringer's position!! Took it all with very good humour though.

Stringer: no quick fixes to economy, can't say it'll all be positive. But entertainment industry probably more resilient than many. Consumers have reasessed their spending; must offer customers products and services they actually want to buy.

7 Imperatives:

1.Embrace the Fusion of Industries. Devices must be created to operate seamlessly across industries.
2.Adopt a Service-enhanced Philosophy.
3.Products must be multi-functional. Access multiple sources of content. At heart of product development for at least 10 years.
4.Support Open Technologies. Consumers expect choice, services to work with any devices.
5.Advance the shared experience. Virtual worlds, social networking etc.
6.Create new value chains. Technologies that offer better user experience. New HD tv screens will lead to purchase of other relevant devices.
7.Go Green. Consumers want it. Big screens, big sounds, but small carbon footprint.

By 2011, 90% of Sony product developments will be connected wirelessly.

New devices such as the Bravia TV models which are wirelessly enabled to access new films etc next generation.

Sony Cybershot cameras will have tie-in with AT&T so that users can upload images to file-sharing sites, Bravia TVs etc.

Clock radios on bedside tables. With wifi, it can collect customised content immediately and serve it up with your wake-up call (movies coming to town, new song releases of favourite artists, weather etc)

New screen technology – OLED. Allows for thinner screens. Flex OLED – flexible, foldable screen. Ereader of the future, but not just static text but also video etc. Wireless again.

Bluray at centre of HD.

John Lasseter, Chief Creative Officer, Disney and Pixar on stage to talk about Bluray.

Wants customers to always have best experience possible – so they can see what creators see in the studios.

Showed clip of new films, straight off Bluray. Given the gigantic size of the screens in the auditorium the resolution and quality is very impressive.

Not just high-quality film, but also features. Internet-connected. Allows for example to pull in weather report and time of day from location and impose that on a film. People can watch same film in different locations while being connected, can talk about it while watching it.

Can pull in information off the web while watching something – e.g. A car in a film etc. This is neat; say you're watching a film and want to know more about an actor; highlight them and they could be recognised, then info on them served up from imdb or whatever.

With home projectors can introduce 3D videos in cinema quality at home.

3D version of Toy Story and Toy Story 2 coming out; Toy Story 3 in 2010.

PSP and PS3 integration ideal – can transfer content from one to the other wirelessly.

President of Sony Computer Entertainment, Kaz Hirai, on stage.

Play, listen, watch, learn, discover, communicate, create, and share. Elements of next-gen consumers want these. All enabled on PS3 and PSP. Games introduced that tap into both platforms.

Beyond games though – networked content and services (PSN – PlayStation Network).

LittleBIGPlanet – indication of where mass media is headed. Allows user to create/design games and content. Launched with 50 levels; with additional UGC, over 300,.000 levels.

Sony Online Entertainment brand.

FreeRealms – online 3D environment. Launch on PC, then PS3.

PS Store. Content is portable – played on TV, PS3 etc. Downloadable titles and games. MTV partnering for additional content.

Area of learn and discover. Life with PlayStation. 900,000 unique monthly users. Can use it to activate interactive mode while watching something, pull in information from Life. Demod weather again; is this all there is?!

Home – 3D virtual environment. EA has come on board to create online place for gamers.

Dr. Oz on stage – big name in the US, about to have his own show. Lots of show placement and telling us how to be healthier. Lovely.

On stage now – baseball player. Sony putting products into Yankee Stadium. One room containing lots of Sony technology..

New energy-efficient line of TV screens – 40% less electricity use. Also take-back recycling programme.

New solar cell which collects light emitted in rooms and re-uses it.

Concept phone by Sony Ericsson.

Digital cinema. Time now to try the 3D glasses at last!

First short film in digital 3D. Version of Cars. Excellent!! Very good quality.

Also 3D games – Grand Turismo. Live TV – demo of recording of football game. Very good; really does bring it closer.

Jeffrey Katzenberg, CEO Dreamworks, on stage to talk about 3D.

Two equally big developments in film: talking films from silent ones; and colour from black and white. 3D next big shift equal to those.

Dual projectors synched to display it. No longer causes viewer to feel sick, unlike previous 3D attempts!

All new Dreamworks films will be authored in 3D. Another demo of first Dreamworks 3D film. Wow, very good – especially action/chasing scenes etc.

Sony bringing out new “lifestyle notebook” - slightly smaller than a netbook, slimmer in sense of being able to fit into a pocket.

New Sony Ericsson phone connected to music store. Can also recognise music playing in background and offer song to user for purchase.

All in all a good session though very long (2+ hours). Some talk of merging between genres (entertainment and learning).

Eric Baber's blog

Thoughts and links to articles about a variety of ICT and education-related topics. Where an article or resource is referred to in the header of a blog post please click the header to read the article.

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