Robert Scoble has enjoyed the unique status of celebrity tech blogger, arguably the first of his kind. That status was obvious at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show, as Mr. Scoble arrived to a rock-star welcome at “CES Ultimate,” the Sunday evening preview of what the World’s largest tech show has to offer. What’s cool about Robert is he’s always available for a video and not shy about his view of what’s happening in tech, as the video shows. What did he think about CES 2012, considering it was the first day?
“This is a gadget show. My expectations have gone down to the proper level for this show. I don’t expect something to be mind-blowing this year. If it happens, great! It’s like getting a kiss from a beautiful girl.”
On Microsoft’s Announced Exit From CES For Next Year
In December Microsoft announced it would hold a keynote speech or have a booth presence at CES after this year. Whatever the real reason – the talk on the floor was that CES asked too much money from Microsoft – the fact is 2012 is it. Scoble doesn’t see this as a big deal, and said “CES is turning into a buyer’s show,” and the buyers already know what Microsoft has to offer without being at the trade show.
But the truth is that Microsoft really didn’t have anything new to report. Arguably it’s living off its brand and the enormous network of users, fans, and employees. But the days of expecting a new, “mind blowing” introduction from Microsoft seem to be in its past, for now. At least that was the talk before Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s Keynote Monday evening, and his presentation failed to change that perception.
And that keynote, which Scoble actually forecast as being “really boring” based on past performances, was, according to Scoble, the reason for Microsoft’s decision not to come back to CES: the other story is that CES asked Microsoft not to come back. Personally, I don’t believe that, and the rumor just may be a way of CES saving face in the wake of bad news.
But that written, Scoble’s blasts about Balmer’s bad CES talks were hilarious. “Microsoft’s keynotes are really boring. They don’t cause any news. Like when he introduced the tablets last year: I was going to sleep! But, I don’t know, we all go because it’s Microsoft and they might announce something brilliant.”
CES A Place For Small Companies?
Scoble sees the Consumer Electronics Show as a place where small and medium sized companies like Belkin can show its newest products to a tech-oriented audience, where a large company probably doesn’t need to be at CES. What Robert is looking for in general are companies that have products that help people, as he puts it “kick ass,” and he didn’t expect to see that kind of firm at CES.
He points to Universal Studios, which has just two engineers and outsources “everything” to other companies and yet are “kicking ass.” One of the companies he likes that Universal Studios is using is called New Relic, which looks at server performance to “see” which ones are going supercritical in real time.
Tablets V Television
We also talked about the rising use of tablets as an interactive tools to use while watching television, something Robert’s really an advocate of. Another issue we talked about, mine, was the problem of companies like Google and Nielsen blocking the development of the perfect content valuation market.
In this case, Google has pulled back the reporting time frame of Google Trends by as much as five hours. Nielsen is reportedly telling its clients that it ‘doesn’t do social’ and so will refuse to consider a TV show that made it into the Twitter Top Trends as something to be considered in its television ratings system. Scoble thinks those efforts at blocking the market will eventually come to an end because they can’t last forever. We shall see. I just hope he’s right.