After a harrowing and uncertain journey, I successfully arrived in Vegas (without my luggage) for the 2014 edition of CES — the largest US tech trade show. While the convention center floor doesn’t actually open until Tuesday, press events begin tomorrow. Not that the timing deterred me from going on a quick recon mission while awaiting my suitcase. And, as you can see above, the CES media trailers are in full effect (with Engadget’s studio under construction). As to themes, 4K HDTV and wearable tech top the pre-show buzz, with a healthy dose of Audi chatter and the requisite glut of iPhone accessorizing (despite Apple, Inc not actually having a CES presence). Plus you can’t walk 100′ without encountering something Samsung-branded.
CES is indeed grueling, as you may have read. But it’s also exhilarating. And those who don’t find value are doing it wrong (and perhaps should find careers in a different industry). Like most things, the show is what you make of it — and I try to bring a healthy balance to my approach, prioritizing relationships ahead of press releases… as it’s the only time each year that industry gathers in a single location. In fact, Twitter is probably a better venue to track my experiences, versus the the modest amount of blogging I anticipate we’ll get done. Having said that, I am indeed prepared…
Unlike last year, I’ve left behind the flakey Chromebook that repeatedly let me down, and am sporting an 11″ Windows 8.1 netbook instead. Along with an iPhone 5s as my only “camera.” I’ve been quite pleased with the photographic capabilities of my Galaxy Note 2, but an adventure like this requires something smaller and faster. And, to keep it juiced while I’m on the go, I’m packing an Anker external battery. It’s bulkier than the Radio Shack-provided Enercell that kept us going last year, but it also contains far more power (9000mAh) – well worth the tradeoff. Beyond the high tech, CES bloggers also require comfortable shoes, hand wipes, and ear plugs. Check, check, check.
Let’s get this party started!