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Source: Apple plans to attend CES in 2010

post #1 of 81
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On the heels of announcing its plans to bail on Macworld Expo next year, Apple will be instead attending the more generic Consumer Electronics Show in 2010, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The blogosphere has been passionately arguing both for and against an Apple appearance at CES, which is held in Las Vegas rather than Macworld Expo's San Francisco. Sources close to the company have indicated to AppleInsider that the move is a done deal, a remarkable turn of events given that CES has long been dominated by Microsoft's product announcements issued in keynotes delivered by Bill Gates and now by CEO Steve Ballmer.

Macworld vs CES

Over the last few years, Apple's announcements at Macworld Expo have overshadowed Microsoft's at CES, as the Cupertino powerhouse released blockbuster products such as the iPhone and climbed to dominate the digital media future of online music, video, and now mobile software sales in iTunes.

In contrast, Microsoft has announced a string of products that either never materialized, were grossly impractical, or have sold poorly and received bad reviews, from Spot watches to Mira terminals to Windows Vista to Windows Home Server to the Surface to Zune. The remainder of CES tends to be little more than electronics firms showing off slightly larger TVs.

Given that Apple has the capacity to blow out the lights at CES during Macworld Expo, why would it choose to abandon its own party and join one held in honor of Microsoft? It's certainly not the timing of the event, as CES is typically held at the same time or at least within a week or two of Macworld.

One of the key reasons Apple appeared ready to leave Macworld was because of the pressure to impress consumers and shareholders with sensational new product announcements just after it had sold through its blockbuster holiday sales. Microsoft has typically made announcements at CES for products that are slated to appear later in the year or perhaps years out into the future, while Apple's Macworld unveilings tend to be available immediately or within a month or two.

All things considered, it would appear that Apple's participation at CES would be no better than Macworld for Apple, and additionally involve greater traveling expenses and expose the company to greater competition for media attention.

Apple ready for a challenge

However, that challenge is apparently just what Apple is looking for as it branches out from its past as a computer hardware company into a full consumer electronics firm with significant software products, leadership in digital media sales, and even a toe in the water of mobile gaming with the iPod touch and iPhone.

Attendance at CES would directly contrast Apple's offerings with Microsoft's, the company most closely matched to Apple's future aspirations. Over the last three years of Macworld and CES, Apple's Mac OS X Tiger and then Leopard were pitted against Windows Vista; then the iPhone directly challenged Windows Mobile; Apple's iPod and iTunes empire roundly trounced efforts by Microsoft to spread Windows Media DRM, sell its Zune music player, and expand into the digital living room; and Apple has even started making inroads against Microsoft Office with its iWork suite and its new iWork.com cloud collaboration service.

Windows enthusiast pundits have recently grown unable to seriously belittle Apple in comparison to Microsoft, but a direct contrast of the two company's efforts at CES would make the differences even more impossible to ignore. Apple could also directly contrast its offerings against other competing CES exhibitors (such as Palm), as well as benefit from Mac, iPod, and iPhone ecosystem partners who would help tint the PC-centric event in Apple-savvy colors.

Not just speculation

While the web lights up with various opinions on the plausibility of Apple attending CES, AppleInsider has obtained first hand, credible reports that the news is true, corroborating a rumor story published by Ed Sutherland of the Cult of Mac. CES officials were said to have informed some exhibitors about the matter before the start of this year's show, indicating that next year's CES will have a section reserved for Mac-oriented exhibitors.

The source noted that Apple "wants to sit amongst its competition," rather than being isolated at its own event. Such a development would mirror Apple's efforts to move from PowerPC to Intel processors, its iPhone retail expansion plans with WalMart, and other strategies to raise the profile of its products while selling to a wider audience.

However, even with participation by Apple, the days of electronics trade shows such as CES appear to be numbered. The group canceled its summer event just as IDG killed the summer Macworld Expo, and sister events such as COMDEX, Seybold, and the E3 gaming convention have also fizzled over the last decade. Apple also recently pulled out of NAB, fueling excited rumors that it might sell of its Final Cut suite of Pro Apps.

While trade shows in general have waned in importance with the rise of the Internet, Apple has funneled its resources into building its own Worldwide Developer's Convention into a record setting, sold out event. The company has the capacity to generate significant media attention at any time simply by announcing a press event of its own. Phil Schiller also noted in this year's Macworld keynote that Apple's retail stores host far more visitors every year than a series of Macworld events ever could.

That indicates that an Apple appearance at CES 2010 might likely serve primarily a symbolic move by Apple as it cements its increasing importance in the consumer electronics world at the expense of Microsoft, generic PC makers, smartphone vendors, and its other competitors in the consumer electronics industry.
post #2 of 81
I can't wait to hear the spin on this.
post #3 of 81
I don't mind Apple going to CES but it's never a good thing to be
hypocritical.

The + is that they wouldn't have the pressure to announce

"OMFG!!!!111!11 announce mind blowing hardware" at CES.
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post #4 of 81
To make it more interesting, CES and the planned Macworld are both during the same week again in 2010.
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post #5 of 81
interesting...
I guess that's going to put the final nail in the coffin for Macworld...
Now all the apple fanboys are gonna head to CES instead and Macworld 2010 will be empty as hell.
post #6 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post

I don't mind Apple going to CES but it's never a good thing to be
hypocritical.

++++++ to infinity.
post #7 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The source noted that Apple "wants to sit amongst its competition," rather than being isolated at its own event.

This is why it's also good for them to sell and support/repair their machines in stores other than the Apple Store. They have to be careful though. Selling £1000+ dual core iMacs next to £500 quad core PCs isn't going to make the right impression.

I think we'll have a new Mac Mini announced at CES in 2010.
post #8 of 81
CES has a much larger audience (both in attendance and in press coverage) and many of them are people who are not Apple customers already and hence might be attracted to the Apple products. There are many more vendors with whom to "rub shoulders" to attract new technologies to the platform.

Good! Good! Good!
post #9 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by RBR View Post

CES has a much larger audience (both in attendance and in press coverage) and many of them are people who are not Apple customers already and hence might be attracted to the Apple products. There are many more vendors with whom to "rub shoulders" to attract new technologies to the platform.

Good! Good! Good!

Those are definite advantages .

But they won't be the center of the universe at CES either. They'll share the stage with MS, Dell, Palm, ect...

And its unlikely that SJ will get to give the opening keynote. I suspect MS will still keep that for now.

And I doubt the press will be as friendly as those guys at MW.
post #10 of 81
something huge is in the works for 2010
post #11 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by asgiov View Post

interesting...
I guess that's going to put the final nail in the coffin for Macworld...
Now all the apple fanboys are gonna head to CES instead and Macworld 2010 will be empty as hell.

I don't think so. Macworld will live on. And since the interest of the Mac community isn't always the same as the interest of Apple, it might even be a better Macworld.
post #12 of 81
I agree that this is a good strategic move for Apple but one must wonder if IDG did something to piss off SJ.
post #13 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by nine9nin View Post

something huge is in the works for 2010

Agreed. Apple will want to make a splash!
post #14 of 81
If Apple were having an event on the moon Daniel would find a way to justify it.

I happen to think Apple has something big planned for next year, and that's the real reason behind this. To have something big enough, and consumer focused enough to warrant such a daring move. Something big is being prepped. You can just feel it!

Networked TV's anyone? Mac touch anyone? The BIG Apple consumer push is coming.
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post #15 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac View Post

And its unlikely that SJ will get to give the opening keynote. I suspect MS will still keep that for now.

I wouldn't bet on that. If Jobs offered, they'd be stupid not to bite. He's not just Apple, he's Pixar and Disney too. Jobs would draw a bigger crowd so long as he's willing to wear all his hats.
post #16 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by John the Geek View Post

I wouldn't bet on that. If Jobs offered, they'd be stupid not to bite. He's not just Apple, he's Pixar and Disney too. Jobs would draw a bigger crowd so long as he's willing to wear all his hats.

Don't kid yourself. At best, SJ could give a keynote speech the same night as Ballmer. But I seriously doubt that would even happen.

Gates or Ballmer have given the opening keynote at CES for like 15 years. CES isn't going to just turn their back on them because Steve decides that he wants to start going to CES starting in 2010.

Apple are a big player in the tech industry no doubt. But don't pretend like MS is some two bit player in the tech industry.
post #17 of 81
They are like the genius that just wants to be ordinary, abandoning their own show and going to the same one as everyone else.
post #18 of 81
Apple does not have to reach out to Mac fantasts, they will already know what they will present ahead by reading here and elsewhere or check the Apple website every now and then anyway. That's why one sees Microsoft and Dell at MacWorld and other 3rd parties. Smart move! /J
post #19 of 81
This is just not going to happen. Apple pulled out of Macworld because they've gotten to the point where they don't need shows to get publicity, not so that it can attend CES. Most of the people that attend the keynote at Macworld go to Apples special events, and those that don't, visit their or other apple centric websites almost religiously.
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post #20 of 81
I can just see Apple stealing the whole show.
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post #21 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by collide007 View Post

This is just not going to happen. Apple pulled out of Macworld because they've gotten to the point where they don't need shows to get publicity, not so that it can attend CES. Most of the people that attend the keynote at Macworld go to Apples special events, and those that don't, visit their or other apple centric websites almost religiously.

I get your point, but macworld had a whole keynote and only apple fans, CES is like a car show, with anyone attending.

I wanna see Apple set up their booth right next to Micro$oft. LOL
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post #22 of 81
This makes sense. Computers today are not like what they were 10 or 20 years ago. Consumer Electronics and Computers have merged together in ways that no ever considered in the past.

For example, I have been communicating with Dice Electronics about tech support needed on my iPod Connection Kit in my car (need firmware updated). Anyway, there was a long delay between emails until today. I got a response with an apology stating that most of their staff is at CES! They are not showing off their products at Macworld Expo!
post #23 of 81
I for one think it would be great for Apple to have a presence at CES '10. Contrary to what many may think, there are a lot of Apple-related products at CES, especially this year. Just look at Apple's enormous influence in the music/electronics market- it is literally spilling into the auto industry (its no secret that Ford's CEO Alan Mulally loves the Apple interface), and the auto electronics expo is one of CES's largest venues (and its red hot this year). Seriously though, there's really no need nowadays to have so many electronics expos all over the world. They all showcase the same thing: new electronics. The sheer fact that Apple itself would migrate to CES would mean that Macworld would be at CES. Watch Macworld's vendors flock next year
post #24 of 81
Excellent. Now I see why they pulled out of a MacWorld. This makes more sense as Apple will have a much wider audience, not to mention be where M$ is at. Face to face. This will be interesting.
post #25 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by nine9nin View Post

something huge is in the works for 2010

Hopefully that something big is another Apple blockbuster. My hopes are this isn't a signal of Steve Jobs, the star of Apple, leaving the company. I know he has spoken to the subject but MacWorld is really Steve Jobs' RDF. No Steve, no MacWorld.

I'm not sure why Microsoft still gets the opening keynote for CES. They are not the trend setters or the only thriving ecosystem in the market. Google's leaders have more vision than Microsoft has ever had.

Steve Jobs aside, this signals Apple becoming a mainstream concern and going to CES is only natural. This years CES was pretty lame. With Apple at next years they would be a welcome site from even their competitor so they could ride their coat tails with cheaper me-to products (T-Mobile G1, Blackberry Storm, Netflix media center, Windows 7).
post #26 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

I can just see Apple stealing the whole show.

Sorry, I had to reply to this. You do realize that CES caters across multiple industries, right? This year they expect 100+ thousand people to attend, and that's amid a global recession. The vast majority of those expo-goers are not consumers either, they are industry and trade reps, all trying to get the latest scoops, deals and supplies for the upcoming year. Apple would not steal the whole show, as packing up and moving to CES would mean they're entering (literally) a whole different world (or worlds if you're talking about different industries). I know many people love Apple (myself included), but do realize that Apple is not the center of the electronics universe.
post #27 of 81
Why would Apple need to go to CES to overshadow everyone else? They accomplished just that two years ago at Macworld.
post #28 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

I can just see Apple stealing the whole show.

it's not like Microsoft is going to have anything much to talk about at CES 2010, after all by then Win 7 would have been launched, or whatever.
post #29 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by iPeon View Post

Excellent. Now I see why they pulled out of a MacWorld. This makes more sense as Apple will have a much wider audience, not to mention be where M$ is at. Face to face. This will be interesting.

+1 makes perfect sense to me too. I think it's a good move for Apple.
post #30 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by asgiov View Post

interesting...
I guess that's going to put the final nail in the coffin for Macworld...
Now all the apple fanboys are gonna head to CES instead and Macworld 2010 will be empty as hell.

The fanboys aren't allowed in CES. It industry only. If this pans out, I wouldn't expect any big Apple announcements at CES or even a keynote. I would imagine this would be to give the industry access to Apple and each other.
post #31 of 81
OK -Was I not the one who suggested this and predicted this yesterday?
Apple is a total combination of SONY and Microsoft (electronics giant and software company).
Let the battle of the Keynotes begin!
post #32 of 81
While I initially had a hard time believing the news, it was mainly due to my assumption Apple would have to make a keynote on someone else's schedule. But maybe they just want a booth!! They don't even need to announce new things per se, just "be there" and present what they already have. They'd be one of the few exhibitors with products that are already on the market, rather than prototypes and promises.

I also notice how the media (not just the tech media) can kind of get away with almost ignoring Macworld because it's so specific, while they always report on the broader CES (no matter how dull) and even E3. Of course they report on Apple's keynote, but because they (Macworld and CES) are two separate trade shows, they also give ample time to Microsoft.

By invading CES, the media will have to make a choice between the two. That's exactly what Apple wants.
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post #33 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

I can just see Apple stealing the whole show.

Whether Apple steals the show or not, it is like moving from a pond to the ocean. There will be so many more opportunities at CES that it is not even funny. Besides, CES is where all of the non-dedicated to Apple press is anyway so go where the action is (and the tech partners they really should be talking with). The existing Apple partners will, for the most part, either already be there or come along for the action.
post #34 of 81
I'm still not seeing the benefit.

CES is huge but it's not like vendors out there don't know who Apple is.
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post #35 of 81
I'm no expert of course and I'm sure Apple has already done their homework to way out the reasons why it would be better to be at CES rather than Macword; however, my personal belief (not that it means much) is I always figured Apple received a great deal of coverage by holding their own events at Macworld and hope this does not lessen their media presence at CES mixed in with all those other vendors in there.

I can already see the PC vs. Mac fights that are going to break out at CES in 2010... hehe

This could be good and it could be not so good.... I guess I'll wait to find out and see how it all works out. -- Roadtrip 2010!
post #36 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post

I'm still not seeing the benefit.

CES is huge but it's not like vendors out there don't know who Apple is.

It has to do image. Apple is considered an outsider by the tech industry. No one likes outsiders no matter how good or effective they are. M$ is the God whose tech all else revolves around. Apple's move to be at CES is purely psychological - an intrusion directly aimed at interfering with MS's playground. It's a game, a game that is being very well played by S.J.
post #37 of 81
The majority of you need to come to your senses.

Peon... CES is not MS's playgorund. And despite what the non-informed writer of this article thinks, CES is NOT a party held in honor of MS.

Christ, the first CES was held in 1967 WAY before Apple or MS were even start ups!

Does Apple make some great products? Most definitely. But like iReality said, Apple is not the center of the tech universe. CES is a much bigger thing than MacWorld and whole different ballgame.

Ireland? Networked TV's from Apple next year?? LOL They'll only be a year behind. Take a look at some of the stuff Samsung rolled out this week. MacTouch? Check out the Lenovo A600 they rolled out earlier this week. You'll have to have something bigger then those two to make a dent at CES.

Case in point? From the looks of it, the iPhone killer is soon to be here. Palm came back relevance big time today with the Pre. This beta version of the phone caused ALOT of heads to turn today, and it even has a QWERTY keyboard.

I'm not a Mac guy. I have an Ipod, yes. But Jesus, some of you guys have to realize that Apple isn't the end all be all of tech.
post #38 of 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

I can just see Apple stealing the whole show.

'reinventing' the whole show.

I think that it will be good to have them placed in amongst more fierce competition. If they make a presentation like this year's MW, they will suffer for it as their offering will be contrasted with the other companies.

Makes me wonder if they are developing something that deserves a bigger stage than MW.
post #39 of 81
I suspect that the idea mentioned above about Apple going mainstream makes the most sense. Apple used to be the renegade. Ages ago the Macintosh team flew a pirate flag over their building. Now Apple stores nestle in among Pottery Barn and Nordstroms. Hardly pirates any longer. I don't think they'll make a blockbuster new product announcements at CES. Rather they'll be looking for a chance to blend in, to make deals, to find ways to cooperate. The message will be "we're a $40B company and we're going to grow up and act like it". It has been a long time since the days of the Think Different campaign.

I'll speculate that the Apple booth at CES will be heavy on iPods, iPhone, iMacs and MacBooks. You'll hardly see an Xserve or a MBP or FCP or Cinema Displays. They didn't even they show FCP at MWSF. It wasn't mentioned in the keynote. Note that Apple didn't exhibit at NAB last year.

CES is on a downtrend. This year is smaller than last year. 2010 will be quite a bit smaller than this year due to the economy. Trade shows are on the way out.

Macworld is at heart a user conference, not a trade show. It will probably shrink quite a bit as well, but if it embraces its education mission it should be able to stay healthy for quite some time. I was amazed at the size of the Lynda booth. They clearly think there is money to be made in teaching people to better their skills using software.
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post #40 of 81
If they have a booth at CES, I hope they enable 'Tap to Click'. I'm always seeing some curious person come into an Apple Store, move the cursor over to the dock, tap, give up, and go look at the iPods instead.

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