#CES/Elegant By Design/Boxee, Vestalife, Hannspree, Casemate

05Jan10

Since this was my first time covering CES, I decided to fly in early to check out the press events with the intention to miss the crowds. Not so flying out of SFO. SWA had a dozen flights to Vegas, all sold out. Mixing it up at the airport was Popbox, Dolby, Wired and others. I had a great flight sitting with Boxee and Monster, and snagged a killer +1 invite to the John Legend concert Friday night. (Who wants to go??). CES is such a party that it turns out Lady Gaga, LeVar Burton and Tommy Lee will be on the show floor too. After checking in at the Hilton, I shared a cab to the Venetian with a friendly CEA staffer to enjoy CES Unveiled. The room was packed by 5 with a strong showing by ABC News and the NBC Today Show. Featured exhibitors got their money’s worth tonight. Most compelling were:

– The Boxee box which is an elegant triangle, sort off, has a sleek qwerty remote, and is playing with the idea of iPhone as remote for greater interactivity like shopping for in-show merchandise (www.twitpic.com/wuy8k, (www.twitpic.com/wus85
– Casemate’s Fuel, a $79 integrated battery case with clip
– Powermat’s 750,000 units sold since 10/15
– UK Trade & Investment’s femtocells which boosts ATT 3G coverage in the home to 5 bars
– Vestalife’s fashionable metallic red Firefly suede-like iPhone speakers, delicious to the touch (www.twitpic.com/wurio
– Hannspree’s huggable monitors (www.twitpic.com/wusug
– Lenovo’s red hybrid ships 6/1 (www.twitpic.com/wurio

As for the conversation, I heard the good, bad and ugly of retailers, some slow to pay, some charging slotting fees. Others like Walmart, Radio Shack and Office Max winning thumbs up. Of course Best Buy is a major CES sponsor with the best intentions bringing connectivity to in-store heat walls Summer 2010.

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