Each year CES’s curtain raiser features microsoft CEO Bill Gates and assorted celebrity guests, rally the troops with some big predictions for the New Year a rash of product announcements. While this year Gates had plenty of good news in heralding the arrival of a digital lifestyle, he was rather short on genuine product news.
Where previous years had seen SPOT watches, personal video players and Media Center PC extender devices this year, there was, well a promise to work with LG to deliver a DVD/hard disk recorder that could download microsoft video content from the web. Conspicuously absent was an Xbox 2 games console which games industry seers had been suggesting would take the starring role.
There were a few snippets; MSN is to launch video downloads in the US with MTV, Yahoo and Fox all up for delivering content, Oregon Scientific is to sell SPOT watches capable of receiving weather information . But there was still no sign of those SPOT fridge magnets we were promised back in 2003.