Gear, Announcements to Expect
Brand-name vendors, including Dell Inc., Gateway Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co. and possibly even Apple Computer Inc., which could well use the platform or parts of it to design new portables, are all expected to offer Napa machines for businesses and consumers. "From the PC side this year, well see a lot of commercial notebooks with the Napa launch," Baker said. But, he added, "Well hear a lot more about notebooks with wireless WAN built into them. Thats most certainly a crossover technology." Several PC makers, including Lenovo, Dell and HP, have already announced plans to offer Verizon Communications Inc.s EV-DO wide-area wireless network service with their machines. Dell and HP said they would not begin until 2006.Bill Gates, Microsoft Corp.s chairman and chief software architect, will also take the stage for a CES keynote address. During his talk, Gates is likely to extol the virtues of Vista, Microsofts next Windows operating system, due in late 2006. Given that many of the business-oriented details of the new operating systemsuch as its Restart Managerhave already been discussed by Microsoft, Gates may instead focus on Vistas Media Center capabilities, or outline its Tablet PC functionality. Businesses might find tablet PC talk of interest. Tablet PCs, which use pen input and a special Windows XP Tablet Edition operating system, have generally been slow sellers compared to standard notebooks. However, tablets have found homes in areas such as health care and education. Meanwhile, some firms have also begun to show interest in Media Center PCs for audiovisual duties in showing presentations in boardrooms or sales meetings, some PC makers say. Click here to read about about Vistas graphics performance. New cellular phones, televisions and other devices are also expected to turn up at the show.
Palm Inc. is likely to highlight its forthcoming Treo 700w, the companys first Windows Mobile software-based phone. Motorola Inc. may also show off its Q, a phone that looks like a cross between one of the companys RAZR phones and a Research In Motion LTD. BlackBerry.
LG.Philips LCD Co. Ltd. will show off LCD-based television and computer displays in sizes up to 55 inches, the company said in a pre-show invitation. Samsung Electronics Co., BenQ Corp. and others are expected to show similarly large LCD displays, plasma TVs and other gadgets. LG.Philips LCD will also show a 10.1-inch flexible e-book display, the company said.
Some new technologies will crop up as well. At least one company, Jadoo Power Systems Inc. of Folsom, Calif., will display fuel cells to power notebooks, radios and other equipment.
Tracking calls while away from ones desk may also become easier thanks to new phones that will also be on display at the show. At least one company will exhibit a phone system that is based on Europes DECT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications) standard. The technology, which behaves like a cross between cordless and cellular phones, will allow a user to roam throughout an office building or an office park and still receive calls, representatives said.
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Intel will also discuss its Viiv brand consumer electronics gear. Although Viiv platforms will be aimed at consumers, some of the same hardware will also show up in corporate desktops in 2006 and as part of a business desktop platform dubbed Averill.