Microsoft may have stunned some in the consumer tech business when it announced that this year's International CES would be its lastas an exhibitor, but others may have seen the writing on the wall.
An annual show-and-tell product event for the tech industry in the digital age is a bit like dial-up internet service competing with high-speed wireless. Tech is evolving faster than ever, the devices are getting smaller and smaller, the product cycles shorter and shorter and, well, there's a whole lot less to see. In some cases, nothing. That's why it's called virtual.
You don't have to ship that VCR or camcorder or 72-inch, flat-screen TV.
What's more, in an age of austere corporate budgets — and aggravating air travel — money spent on travel and entertainment might have any number of better uses, including R&D.
Still, for some there's nothing like a party, and CES — thanks partly to its Las Vegas location — is certainly that.
What do you think?