4 Most Underwhelming Technologies of CES 2012



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you do know that before there was the MBA PCs had ultraportables....i seriously considered sony's vaio SSD based ultraportable back in 2009 when I was originally considering the MBA/macbook pro notebooks. I ended up going with the a standard sony viao (cheaper and better specs then the macbook pro, better processor and graphics card then the MBA, cheaper than the SSD vaios)...likewise before iPads PCs had tablets as early as 2002-03.

i think the point of the ultraportable market opening up is missed by this piece. it's not about the size of the hardware because if that was the case netbooks would not be a flash in the pan but rather how our consumption of information is changing and this is changing the hardware requirements. the mainstream market is willing to be malleable about the format of software (the market doesn't mind downloading software) and other forms of information (videos,etc) in turn this gives hardware makers more options and the increased sales potiential means lower costs to capture more of those able to appreciate.



I think you are way off on the smart watch. Though smart phone have taken much of the prior use of the watch, it has failed miserable in two areas, portable durabilty and battery life. I had a watch for ten years before the battery died. It worked under water, while camping and was very attractive (thanks to the Swiss). Likewise I never ran into a situation where it fell because my hands were full nor become disfunctional because it got slammed against something.

Recently on a camp out, everyone's "smart phones" died after the second day out and entire groups lost total track of time. Had it not been for a few veteran scouts equipt with wrist watches, entire groups would have missed major potions of the program.

Likewise, it has become common place now to see an Android "Spider" from the beloved commercial where a person smashed a guys phone because its image of a spider was so vivid. Though it was funny, I have seen almost as many "spider" iPhones as I have seen unscathed one. The touch functionally becomes unresponsive even if it was only dropped from a desk height because of it bulky dimensions slip through a persons fingers if their hands are not free.

Also speaking of "hands-free", the new NTSB ruling that all cell phone use be banned while driving nationwide just made the iWatch a viable product. Since Apple is working the iPod Air, the iWatch would simply be a wrist variety...



The article says " There are already so many smartphones armed with powerful lenses and camera sensors, that purchasing an entirely seperate gadget for casual picture-taking is as pointless as purchasing a point-and-shoot. "

I'm a fan of iPhoneography. But let's not get carried away.

Some things my point-and-shoot (a panasonic lumix dmc-zs7) can do that my iphone4s can't: For starters, a 25mm focal length at the wide end, which is invaluable for outdoor scenics and indoor group shots. Some more: multiple auto-focus and metering modes; stereo mics for video; a 12x optical zoom. And still more: a flash powerful enough to actually be useful; image stabilization; flash burst mode; continuous autofocus in videos; a shutter button that's much, much easier to use. The 12-megapixel resolution has produced pictures I've blown up to 24 x 30 inches with great results. And let's not forget more than a dozen "scene modes" including one for shooting fireworks, and another for illuminating a person or object close to the camera at night while leaving the "shutter" open long enough to also properly expose the city or christmas lights or whatever is in the background. This point and shoot has GPS, too--one of the features I'd argue does make the iPhone superior to many point-and-shoots.

Some people might argue none of these are tools that would ever be used by a "casual" photographer. I'd disagree.

There are times I appreciate the iPhone-as-camera's capabilities, particularly its ability to shoot stills or video that can then be emailed or messaged immediately and without the intervention of a computer hookup. Can't do that with my P & S. But that hardly justifies the conclusion that it's "pointless" to own another imaging product. IMHO.



About ten years ago I would have loved a SmartWatch. I would have though it was the coolest thing.

Now everything has a clock in it
Now I already have a device that does everything that watch does, only better, and more.
I haven't worn a watch in five years.

I think you hit the nail on the head with this one. Smart watches will go the way of calculator watches.



I'll be reminding you of this post when Apple introduces the iWrist ...



I fully expect an Android Toaster to show up this year. That, then in SkyNet, then Cylons.