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CES: Palm Press Conference

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This is Palm press conference summary. John starts out talking about the "right phone and the right platform." He must be talking about the Palm Pre and it's new OS.

Ed Colligan, the President and CEO of Palm takes the stage. He talks about the "roots of Palm." He mentions that Palm has mobile in their DNA, since that's all they're focused on. It started off with the Palm Pilot that, once, changed the way people managed their life on-the-go. But, for this new phone they had to start from the ground-up. He introduces the Palm WebOS. They, finally, show the Palm Pre and they also list all of the features on their new phone. It has Bluetooth, an 8GB storage, a "fast processor", GPS and Wi-fi. The phone itself has a 3.1 inch touch screen (with multi-touch capability) with a 320 x 480 resolution. On the phone it has a gesture area (more on that later), a center button, an accelerometer, a proximity sensor and an ambient light (whatever that is). On the side of the phone is the volume. On to the back, you get a 3 megapixel camera with an LED flash and a speaker. The back of the phone has a removable back case, by consumer demand (Take that iPhone). On the right side you get your MicroUSB. On the top of the phone, you get your regular 3.5mm headphones, a ringer switch and a power button. The phone itself has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and is ergonomically curved. Shortly after explaining this, he exits the stage.

Matias Duarte comes on the stage. He explains the OS of the phone and it's software. The gesture area of the phone seems amazing. Wow, this OS is very advanced but, at the same time, it was still simple, if that makes any sense. WebOS is nothing like you've seen before. The new gesture area is a very, very, very good concept. Oh my God. I want this phone, but not for it's design, which is still good-looking. But, instead i would get it for the Pre's OS, which looks amazing if you see it in action. It has superb productivity. They show the new WebOS's feature, called Synergy. Synergy manages your contact information, calendars and your e-mail. It connects everything. Everyone reading this blog post right now should watch a video about the software to understand why i am drooling over this OS right now. The different windows or tasks on WebOS are called 'cards.' Matias exits the stage, soon after.

John appears back on stage. He shows the Palm Pre's wireless charger, which uses Inductive technology to charge your phone. He reviews the key things about the Palm was it's Synergy, universal search, unobtrusive notifications, cards, and the break-though user experience.

Ed Colligan comes back on stage and says that the Pre is "the one phone you can use through your entire life." He also mentions that Sprint will be the carrier for the Palm Pre. He introduces the CEO of Sprint to the stage.

Dan Hesse is now on stage. He mentions some features of the phone like the gestures and the cards. He says that this is the "right product on the right network" Furthermore, he mentions Gizmodo's article on the 3G networks in the US, regarding: Sprint, At&t and Verizon. Gizmodo said that Sprint had the fastest download speed. Dan mentions that their 3G service in the US is 4 times as large as At&t's and that Sprint is also the most dependable. He says that you can go to sprint.com for more information on pre-registering for the Palm Pre. Before he leaves the stage he congratulates Palm. They mention that the Pre will be available in the first half of 2009. They show a lot of their partners, which include many big names, like: Google, Yahoo, Facebook, AOL, Amazon and Pandora, to name a few.

Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook gets on stage. She talks about Facebook's success and shows a couple of graphs and a timeline of their history. She welcomes the Palm Pre.

Ed comes back on stage and he recaps 3 things from the presentation. The new WebOS, of course, the Palm Pre, which is, "the phone that thinks ahead" and their partners.

John comes back and thanks the audience for being there. It was a fairly long press conference, seeing how it was 67 minutes and they only talked about the Palm Pre. But, it was extremely great news from Palm. It will be good to see how they do, in the near future.

Palm Press Conference video: http://www.g4tv.com/ces2009/press_conf_detail.aspx?video_key=35970
Palm Pre picture: http://www.pcworld.com/article/156710/new_3g_palm_pre_enters_smart_phone_war.html
Palm Pre picture (2): http://www.popsci.com/node/30803

CES: Blu-Ray Press Conference

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My first press conference of the day will be Blu-ray and this may or may not be my last press conference, since i am still debating on whether or not to watch Intel's and Palm's press conferences. Anyways, let's start it up.

The chairman of Blu-ray is the first to take the stage. He talks about first looking back on the history of Blu-ray and then he will talk about the future. The hardware sales in the US are 10.7 million since June 2006 and this is including the PS3. This fact alone tells us that Blu-ray is actually doing better than DVD when it started out. Blu-ray's adoption rate is picking up rapidly, it grew about 300% from 2007 - 2008. Blu-ray's growth in it's first 2.5 year's actually tops both DVD's and the TV's growth in it's early 3 years. There are nearly 1100 Blu-ray titles available. Blu-ray, during the holiday season, grew "significantly." There have been 30 million Blu-ray discs sold in the US market to date. Blu-ray is beyond just the HD experience because BD-Live also takes advantage of bringing the Internet and that media to your home. He mentions that BD-Live is the new and, current, killer application for Blu-ray hardware. The future is 3D. They think that Blu-ray is the package media platform for the 3D market. Blu-ray, as a company, is trying to combine the best HD with the best 3D for the ultimate experience.

Someone new comes to stage and he introduces 3 professional panel members to talk all about Blu-ray. I will just refer to all the 3 panels members as 'they,' since i don't know any of their names. The mention that 2008 was a critical year for Blu-ray and that there will be a steady and stable increase in the Blu-ray demand over the year 2009. The remain optimistic for Blu-ray to succeed, just like it has been doing. They feel that the PS3 was affected by crisis, but also that everyone has been affected in some way. They announce that Blu-ray is around to stay and that it will take over DVD's. One of the panel members mentions that, even amidst the economic crisis, he expects to see a 500% - 600% increase in Blu-ray output in 2009. They mention that Blu-ray will continue to outperform DVD's first year's in growth. They touch up on the subject that Digital downloading will surpass all other techonlogy, such as Blu-ray and DVD. They say that HD quality digital downloads are not near the quality of Blu-ray because Blu-ray is the future, due to it's many, many features.

The chairman comes back and he shows a slideshow of the 18 new Blu-ray players at CES and mentions that 11 of them have BD-Live. The slide doesn't contain any pictures, just their model numbers. He mentions that Blu-ray will be more successful than Digital downloading, just like paper has been more successful in the office. He make the comparison between Blu-ray and Digital downloading, to Paper and the 'Paperless Office.' He mentions that although many people years ago believed that the paperless office would soon take over, it never actually ended up happening. This is due to the satisfactory of physically owning the Blu-ray disc. He throws in another reason, that if your Hard drive fails and you don't back up your software correctly, you would've just lost huge money. After that, a question and answer takes place. There was a good question based on what they are using Blu-ray's 50GB capacity on the discs for. I thought this was interesting because i, too, wanted to know why the Blu-ray discs have such a huge capacity. Bigger is better though. Most of the questions that were asked never actually related to Blu-ray because a lot of questions that were asked were regarding the studio's decisions and not Blu-ray's.

Blu-ray Press Conference video here: http://www.g4tv.com/ces2009/press_conf_detail.aspx?video_key=35874
Blu-ray Logo: http://www.ridgelabs.com/
Samsung Blu-ray Player picture: http://i.gizmodo.com/5124091/samsung-bd+p3600p4600-super+slim-wall+friendly-blu+ray-decks
Dark Knight Blu-ray picture: http://www.1up.com/do/blogEntry?bId=8824255&publicUserId=5556675

CES: Sony Keynote

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Someone is talking and i have no clue who it is. I lied, it's Tom Hanks. He talks and is actually pretty funny. He introduces Howard Stringer.

Howard, alongside, Tom Hanks show a prototype of certain wearable glasses that you can watch a movie in and still manage to see the real world due to the transparency settings. Soon after, Tom Hanks leaves the stage. Time for some serious and real news now. Howard admits that Sony is not recession proof. So far this is all the information i have after 15 minutes of talking. Anyways, Howard mentions 7 goals: embrace the fusion of industries, adopt a service-enhanced philosophy, products must be multi-functional, support open technologies, advance the new shared experience, create new value chains (involving better user experience) and go green. In 2011, Sony estimates that 90% of products will connect wirelessly to the web and each other. He mentions a couple of thing's that Sony accomplished last year. The world's first Bravia with 240Hz technology, the slimmest LCD measuring at 9.9mm thin and launching a Bravia with internet capabilities. He mentions that Total Sony Experience. He shows off the world's first camera with Wi-Fi capabilities, the new CyberShot. It will have a one touch upload and the pictures are even uploadable to your Bravias. He also mentions that it has an extraordianary reasonable price and the crowd started to laugh. I could tell that this was not the reaction he wanted and he immediately cleared his throat twice to shut the crowd up. Ooo. Anyways, by using Wi-Fi, Sony has developed a new bedside companion with news, sports, weather, alarms and so much more. It will also be touchscreen and is for the next-generation. He says, "Wouldn't you like to wake up to Big Ben?... the clock i mean." The crowd chuckled a bit. Time for some OLED! They are working on a 20 - 30 inch model. He shows the "Flex OLED" screen (above picture) that has amazing clarity on a small screen. While the Beyonce music video was playing on the Flex OLED, he bent the screen more, just to showcase it. Howard mentions that Sony sells the most HD products and he continues, mentioning Blu-rays 2008 sales of 28 million. He reports that Sony sells half of all Blu-ray players. He gives the stage up to Pixar.

John Lasseter, from Pixar, enters that stage and talks about Blu-ray. He says that when you have it you can't go back. He shows a clip of their movie Wall-e featuring Blu-ray. He mentions that Blu-ray is not just about quality, but that it also has BD-live which is connected to the Internet. He shows a new Sleeping Beauty integrated with BD-live. The menu screen will show a scenery and the background, weather area, of where you are currently located by default and you can change it by clicking anywhere on the map. In the future, Pixar will use 3D and Blu-ray in their movies. John ends off his presentation by showing an exclusive preview of Pixar's next movie called Up. He mentions that they are working on Toy Story 3 and 3D version's of Toy Story 1 and 2.

Howard comes back on stage and mentions a bit more about Blu-ray. The Playstation 3 helped Blu-ray win the war between HD-DVD. He says that there is a 61.3 million install base of the PS3 and the PSP. Shortly after, he introduces someone really familiar to me.

Mr. Kaz Hirai takes the stage. He quickly says that there have been 330 million content downloads over the PSN (Playstation Network). There are 17 million accounts and 2.1 million in the most recent months on PSN. The Playstation 3 is a great example of getting a community together. This is because of LittleBigPlanet, a game that has 1.3 million players. He mentions that the original game came with 50 levels, but now there are user-generated content and up to 300,000 levels currently! He backtracks to 2 years ago and mentions that in April 2007 they launched Sony Online Entertainment. Well now, they are working on a game called Free Realms, which is an MMO. It will launch on the PC first and then shortly after, it will hit the PS3. Kaz reports that MTV is partnering with them to help with their movies, and such, on their Playstation Store. He shows Life with Playstation, which is kind of like Google Earth, but just a bit more basic. I don't know the features of Life with Playstation, but he only showcased different parts of the world and certain temperatures. Kaz talks about Playstation Home and says that in the first month, 3.4 million users doiwnloaded Home. There have been 1 million dollars worth of products sold on Playstation Home ever since it's been released [on Open Beta]. Kaz mentions that Electronic Arts is going to help them develop certain things on Home.

Howard Stringer comes back on stage and is joined by Dr. Oz. Sony Pictures will be producing this guy's show on TV in Fall 2009. I don't know what this guy has to do with anything at Sony's keynote. But, i did find it amusing that he talked about being fat. LOL America, maybe you should listen to this guy.

After Dr. Oz's talk, Howard Stringer is on stage with another person, Reggie Jackson, who is in MLB's Hall-of-Fame. He talks about his baseball career and that he is excited about future technology. Playstation 3 will be in the new New York stadium that they are building. Reggie Jackson leaves the stage. Howard tells the crowd that the Eco-Bravia won CES 2009's Innovation Design and Engineering award in the eco-design category. He talks about recycling, just like everyone did. He shows a couple of new products now. The Dye Sensitized Solar Cell, which can create energy from light in your room and he said that there is more information about it at Sony's booth after the keynote. He also shows the Sugar-based Bio Battery and the concept Greenheart phone, which is made of recycled products. He shows 3d video's to the audience, which G4 skips, since there really would be no point in us at home to see this. After that, someone from Dreamworks Animation talks, but i didn't really pay too much attention to him.

Before Howard finished his presentation, he mentioned: PlayNow Plus, a Sony Ericcson phone (I forget the model), the Vaio P (above picture) and Sony Music.

Gosh, Sony, what's with the 74-minute+ keynote? It's alright, i forgive you guys. Anyways, this weekend will be pretty tough for me. Tomorrow, i'm gonna finish blogging about everything CES and then i need to get cracking on my homework, which i have quite a bit to do.

Sony Keynote video: http://www.g4tv.com/ces2009/press_conf_detail.aspx?video_key=35871
OLED picture: http://hight3ch.com/post/flexible-color-oled-screen/
LittleBigPlanet picture: http://www.notcot.org/post/10302/
Sony Vaio P picture: http://www.zone-numerique.com/news_4222_CES_2009_Sony_Vaio_P_le_netbook_original_enfin_devoile.htm

CES: Sony Playstation 3 Press Conference

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Let's start it off quickly. Luckily, this is only a 34-minute press conference.

The first 2 people on stage, Josh Garvin and Chris Reese, present the first game, Resistance Retribution, which is exclusive for the PSP. This game will be have a Resistance Connect (more about that later). This game, Resistance Retribution is a 3rd-person shooter that will be available in the Spring. This game will bridge the gap between the original Resistance and Resistance 2, which are on the Playstation 3. Resistance Retribution happens a couple of weeks after the first game in the series, Resistance: Fall of Man. After all of this, they showed a story trailer video that takes place in Europe in the year, 1951. Since i do not own a Playstation 3, i haven't played any Resistance titles, so i can't comment much on it. I do know that in the trailer there were a bunch of zombies. What is Resistance Connect? Well, it will basically connect Resistance Retribution to your Playstation 3, using 2 important modes. The first mode is called Infection. You use a USB cable to connect your PSP to your PS3 and this will infect your PSP to unlock new features in the game. The second mode is called Retribution Plus. In this mode, you can play the game using your PS3 controller, instead of playing it on the PSP. This will be useful if you want to play Resistance Retribution on your TV or something. Both Josh and Chris explain the instructions on how to connect the PSP to your PS3 and stuff. They showed a video, but it was pretty dark, since i was watching it online, thanks to G4. Anyways, they both exit the stage..

Brian Fleming enters the stage. He is going to talk about the game called inFamous. He shows an intro video to start up his presentation. The video tells us that there was a 6-block radius blast that kills [almost] everyone except for the main character. After the blast, he realizes that he has special powers. He can shoot electricity. In the video he, pretty much, blows everything up. He blows a train, a car and, also, a truck up. There was a lot of chaos and destruction going on in the video. It was dominated with blue and red colours. Blue being the electricity and red being all of the fire. Brian talks about this game giving you the experience of becoming a superhero. Yay! What your actions are in the game will depict the end-result or your different problems / missions. He shows another video about inFamous and there is, again, a lot of destruction taking place. He exits.

Hermen Hulst enters and he is going to talk about Killzone 2. He shows many videos about Killzone 2 throughout his presentation. The first video of Killzone 2 was to refresh your memory about what this game is about. The detail that they have put into this game looks amazing. Killzone 2 will be a 1st-person shooter, so that it will leave you with more interactivity. He then shows another video, regarding the bullet impact and such. The next video is about the environment. Another video (I told you there are a lot of), regarding the overwhelming graphics that you may not notice while you're caught up in the gameplay. The next video shows more gameplay footage and it brings everything together. It was pretty intense stuff, i just really hope it lives up to all of the hype that it is receiving. I see a glimpse of the slideshow and it says that the single-player campaign will be a mere 10 hours. I don't know if that's long, but i know that, for me, that would take only a day of playing. The last video shows a preview to the introduction Killzone 2 video. He says his thanks and goodbyes.

That concludes the short Playstation 3 press conference.

Playstation 3 Press Conference video: http://www.g4tv.com/ces2009/press_conf_detail.aspx?video_key=35873
Resistance Retribution picture: http://www.teamteabag.com/2008/07/15/e3-resitance-retribution-coming-to-psp/
inFamous picture: http://www.thesimexchange.com/news-item.php?id=25400
Killzone 2 picture: http://www.platformnation.com/2008/12/05/killzone-2-finally-has-a-date/