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A Quick Sneak Peak at Windows 8 (CES 2012)

Earlier today at the Consumer Electronics Show, Intel showed off its new Windows 8 operating system.  In addition to some new form factors, Intel showed some interesting new Windows 8 interface ideas. Keep in mind that these are proofs-of-concept rather than working devices, so they may or may not actually appear on the market.

The most interesting new UI demo was the Nikishki notebook, a clamshell with a big transparent trackpad below the keyboard. The trackpad works as a traditional trackpad and then “disables” when you press your palms on it to type. Then, when you close the laptop, some of the screen is visible and you are able to see and use the Windows 8 tiles available through the transparent portion.

Another concept was a Kinect-like gesture control for laptops that lets you make gestures in the air to control the system.

Consumer Electronics Show 2012: Trends To Watch Out For

All across the globe, electronic/technology companies are preparing themselves for CES (Comsumer Electronics Show) 2012, which takes place during the second week of January at the Las Vegas Convention Center.  Although Microsoft disclosed its plans to end its participation in CES starting next year, this year’s show should hold some promising insights to what’s ahead in the world of electronics.

During an interview with FORBES Wednesday, Accenture‘s Kumu Puri, a senior executive with the consulting firm’s consumer electronics practice in San Francisco, laid out what she thinks will be the five big themes from the 2012 edition of the show.  Microsoft will of course hold a big role this year.  Apple will be casting a big shadow over the event although it will not be participating this year.

So here they are, Puri’s 5 trends to keep a look out for at this year’s CES show:

  1. Ultrabooks: PC makers are expected to role out 20-40 new versions of the incredibly thin notebooks.  Puri thinks pricing will start in the $800 to $1,000 range, but quickly scale down from there.
  2. Tablets/Smartphones: As everyone could have guessed, we will be seeing a lot more mobile devices this year, including new Android based tablets and smartphones.  We should be expecting to see more support for mobile payments and location-based services on these devices.
  3. Connected Devices: Puri expects to see innovation in connected cars, for instance, with new features for Internet radio, and in-car apps targeting safety issues. There will be more Internet-enabled kitchen appliances. Also big again this year will be connected televisions. She thinks some of those services are maturing, and should improve over previous attempts at TV-based Web offerings that received an indifferent consumer reception.
  4. Windows 8: Coming back to Microsoft, the company is expected to launch its new operating system at some point in 2012.  Everyone is just asking how much of it they will be showing off at CES.  Also likely to show up at CES: a variety of new Windows Phone-based mobile devices.
  5. Digital Health: Puri thinks there will be an increased focus on health care at the show, with developments in three areas. One of those is the increased adoption of tablets in hospitals and doctors offices for recording data and other purposes. A second focus will be cloud-based solutions for storing, archiving, accessing and retrieving medical records. And the third will be an increased number of consumer medical devices, some apps running on tablets and phones, others dedicated gizmos for monitoring things like glucose levels and blood pressure.