Category: Favorite companies

CES 2012 Highlights

Posted by – February 1, 2012

I filmed 92 videos at CES 2012. Here are some of my Highlights:

1. The Motorola Kopin Golden-i Headmounted computer for wearable computing

Being able to borrow this setup for the past 2 months, among many other that I’ve been able to meet and demonstrate it to, this allowed me to meet Google co-founder Sergey Brin at CES 2012, Sebastian Thrun (Google X, Stanford Artificial Intelligence, Udacity, Inventor of the Google Self-driving Car) and Steve Lee (Manager of Google Maps for Mobile, Latitude and Google X), I was speaking with them for about 5 minutes!


Thanks Robert Scoble for taking this photo! I interviewed Robert Scoble about his CES impressions a few minutes earlier.

I am really lucky to be one of the first few people in the world to be able experiment with this headmounted computer (they have manufactured less than 250 prototypes thus far). That caught the attention of Google co-founder Sergey Brin who approached me and asked me what it was! I got them to try some of the headmounted voice command software demos in the headset, talk about my $199 Archos 70b Internet Tablet with Honeycomb (and ICS later) which Archos claims to have nearly the third largest worldwide tablet market share with their 2 million Android tablets sold in 2011 (Sergey Brin knows Archos perfectly well it seems, Archos has been making Android tablets for over 2 years but has only gotten fully Google certified since using Honeycomb on their G9 tablet generation released 3 months ago).

Sergey Brin and his colleagues asked me if I thought headmounted monocular wearable computing was going to be big, I said yes of course. I consider it can be like the dashboard for ones life. Positionned a bit below the eye, it can provide augmented informations about your surroundings, display your emails, social media updates, search news alerts, chat messages and more, without the need to pull out your phone or tablet from your pocket. Of course for the mass market consumer audience, it needs to be nearly as compact as a bluetooth headset with a retractable micro-display and a priced below $500 to become an accessory interfacing by bluetooth to any Android phone or tablet. I expect this to start becoming huge later this year or soon after. Kopin is working with Motorola Solutions to mass manufacture an industrial version and they want to work on consumer oriented uses. I also expect wearable computing to become huge in the form of intelligent Android wrist watches such as the DVIP Phaeton and the I’m Watch (Casio GB 6900 G-Shock, Sony-Ericsson Liveview and Motorola Moto ACTV also qualify as early attempts)

I wish I had thought to suggest to Sergey Brin and his team when they asked me what was my CES highlight, that I could guide them 20 meters around the corner of the Samsung booth to the Texas Instruments booth that was showing the OMAP5 development kit and the $30 BOM OMAP4 Always Innovating HDMI Stick (similar to the more expensively priced FXI Tech Exynos 4 stick), instead I could only think of telling them that I liked the $75 Eken AllWinner 7″ ICS tablet in the Hilton China hall which was so far away from Central Hall they probably didn’t spend the time to go there.

2. E Ink provided me with a new demonstration of their latest technology in my E Ink On Every Smart Surface video. Featuring the 300DPI 11.5″ E Ink screen, new high-speed stylus on E Ink demos (with the right collaborative text editing and collaborative stylus annotations software, this could be huge!), on devices like the Eton Rukus, E Ink for digital signage. All your local supermarkets may soon be using E Ink for showing prices in stores.

3. All Camcorder companies seem to wake up to the idea of including low power high performance WiFi streaming and upload into consumer camcorders. See my videos of the Sony Bloggie Live, Toshiba Camileo Air10, Canon HF M52. This is awesome! WiFi in camcorders has been on my wishlist of camcorder features since my post of August 2nd 2008 and my updated camcorder wish-list post of January 31st 2010. Finally the camcorder makers are waking up and differentiating! There still are a bunch of features that I would like from these camcorders. High-quality wireless (multi-Bluetooth) and wired external microphones support. 1080p recording and at the same time live WiFi video streaming, Google+ Hangouts live streaming video upload. Automatic resumable YouTube WiFi upload in between takes. Touch screens to edit Titles, Descriptions, Tags right from the camcorder. WiFi upload must be as fast as using a Laptop. But for sure they are on the right track! I’m looking forward to Panasonic’s Sanyo HD3000 level entry into this market, hopefully with all these WiFi features and more!

4. Ice Cream Sandwich on every device! On Rockchip (2, 3), Telechips (2) , AmLogic (2, 3, 4 ) (ICS on AmLogic Set-top-box by Geniatech), Boxchip AllWinner A10 (Cortex-A8), ST Ericsson U8500 (2)

5. Pixel Qi shows latest status. 10.1″ 1280×800 and 7″ 800×480 in mass production, a lot of design wins, big brand products to be announced soon.

6. OLPC XO-3 shown for the first time!, OLPC does it again, this time revolutionizing the use of tablets for education, pricing it below $100 for mass orders, building it sturdy, unbreakable, sunlight readable with a 8″ Pixel Qi, with a solar charger in the screen cover.

7. ARM Powered Google TV has finally been launched! Featuring solutions shown using the Marvell Armada 1500 platform, Mediatek has an ARM Processor for it, LG showed their new ARM Powered Google TV L9 Processor and platform. Sony shows their second generation Google TV, now ARM Powered for cheaper/better and more revolutionary and awesome! I expect we’ll hear about Samsung, Panasonic, Philips, Sharp, Toshiba all will announce ARM Powered Google TV within months from now. By the half of 2012, most new HDTVs will come with ARM Powered Google TV built-in by default! I also expect as soon as the ARM Powered Google TV software is open sourced that we’ll see it run on cheaper ARM Processors that don’t do 1080p60fps, overlays, IR blaster and HDMI input.

8. 4K HDTVs are comming! Yeah! 4K 55″ HDTVs are always the most awesome demonstrations at trade shows and have been for the past 3-4 years! The arguments by supposed home theater experts that 4K is not usable in living rooms are not true! 4K is fantastic, fenomenal technology to have in the home! Just put your 8 megapixel pictures on an SD card, see those pictures on that 4K 55″ HDTV, and be ready to faint, standing up close to the screen the quality is spectacular. Consumers and even professional photographers never get to see the full detail and resolution of their high megapixel photography. Unless you zoom in on pictures, you never get to see more than 2 megapixel of your pictures quality! With a 4K screen in your living room and that you can use as office desktop monitor, the 4K screens are going to be revolutionary. At CES 2012, Sharp claims their 4K-ICC 55″ TV is to be mass manufactured and launched at consumer oriented pricing later this year! Samsung showed a totally awesome 70″ 4K TV. I have a feeling that Sharp, Toshiba, Samsung and others are just about to launch 4K at hopefully way below $10 thousand, hopefully below $2000 soon! If it’s going to be $1999, I recommend everyone save money to get one. As source, all Hollywood movies are already digitized to 4K and that can fit on a regular Blu-ray disc, streamed from YouTube 4K or over 50 4K movies can fit on a 2TB hard drive.

9. Panasonic launches consumer priced HC X900M camcorder with 4K video sensor! But still a 1080p engine for now. The 4K consumer priced camcorders must be very close! My JVC GC-PX10 also has a 4K video sensor! But mine with its Falconbrid 4K processor also is for now only setup to record it to a 1080p (up to 36mbitps) file.

10. Acer shows 10.1″ Iconia Tab A700 1920×1200 Tablet. Purely amazing super high resolution tablet displays and Ice Cream Sandwich works amazingly smoothly on it! Retina Tablet resolution has been achieved! Toshiba seems to want to do lots of weirdly sized HD tablets also.

11. Lenovo shows Tablet Dock MSM8960 Qualcomm Krait Tablet convertible. Qualcomm shows MSM8960 for gaming.

12. iRiver Kibot, the small new robots are cool, basic stuff for now. Within 10-15 years we’ll be having ARM Powered Robots take care of everything in our homes, washing dishes, take out the trash, cook the food, everything else!

13. 55″ OLED screens shown by Samsung and LG. Those are cool for sure! But I expect they are way more expensive to manufacture than 4K LCD screens of the same size today.

14. Freescale launches 2 new skews of their ARM Cortex-A9 i.MX6 processor platform (for E-readers and certain In-Car infotainment segments).

15. New Samsung Galaxy S2 and Galaxy Note clones are invading China! Kente shows some examples. Consider that excellent 4.3″ capacitive WVGA 3G-ready Android phones are being sold below $100 in China by now. Check back here on ARMdevices.net during the next few months for a lot of news and coverage on these. Also a cheap new Android phone design by ZTE.

16. Virtualization on Android for Enterprise by VMware, smooth remote desktopping PCoIP protocol on OMAP4 shown by Teradici.

16. LG Spectrum, nice 4.5″ 1280×800 IPS-LCD LTE Android phone! LG for sure plans to play an always bigger role in the high-end smartphones market.

17. The Huawei Ascend P1 and P1 S are awesome looking OMAP4460 1.5Ghz 4.3″ Super AMOLED Plus 6.65mm thinnest Smartphone in the world. I think Huawei plans to be a huge player in the worldwide smartphones market. Look for this and much more awesome Huawei Android Smartphones coming out. Their main advantage may be their aggresively competitive pricing. If this phone is sold for $299 unlocked, who wouldn’t buy it?

18. I did my first live Google+ Hangouts On Air from CES, but because of the interference I couldn’t reliably do it at the CES show floor with my headmounted augmented video-blogging system. But I did it every morning on my way between my hotels and the CES showfloor in my series of CES 2012 Monorail Hangouts: 1, 2, 3. I hope to soon do much more impressive things with the Google+ Hangouts On Air features! Expect quality live and on-demand Hangout entertainment from my website at the level of the Hangouts with Barack Obama and Desmond Tutu!

ARM quarterly profits up 45% year/year

Posted by – January 31, 2012

ARM just published their Q4 2011 numbers:

Q4 2011 – Financial Summary
Q4 2011 Q4 2010 % Change
Revenue ($m) 217.0 179.6 21%
Revenue (£m) 137.8 113.9 21%
Operating margin 48.2% 41.1%
Profit before tax (£m) 69.0 47.6 45%
Earnings per share (pence) 3.71 2.90 28%

Warren East, Chief Executive Officer, said:

“In Q4 and throughout 2011 ARM has seen strong licensing growth, driven by market-leading semiconductor companies increasing their commitment to ARM technology, and more new customers choosing ARM technology for the first time. We have also seen our royalty revenue continue to grow faster than industry revenues as the ARM Partnership gains share in our target markets.

2012 will bring exciting opportunities and challenges as ARM enters competitive new markets where we are well positioned to succeed with leading technology, an innovative business model and a thriving ecosystem of Partners. As our customers are designing more ARM technology into their widening product portfolios, ARM is investing in the development of new products. These products will drive further long-term growth in our revenues, profits and cash.”

Since I started this blog on January 1st 2010 (I was before video-blogging at TechVideoBlog.com since 2004), the ARM stock has gone up 343%.

Orchard Inc Toughlet, Pixel Qi tablet for commercial ruggedized outdoor use

Posted by – January 24, 2012

Orchard Inc raised $4 Million for a tablet startup, here showing their titanium aluminium enclosure design, water resistant, unbreakable, with Pixel Qi and OMAP4 Powered Android, designed for outdoor use.

Arnova 7c G2 sold for 80£ in the UK, 7″ capacitive unlocked 3G HSPA+ inside

Posted by – January 23, 2012

The new Archos Arnova 7c G2 has been released. It’s being sold for 80£ at Carphonewarehouse.com with an unlocked, no-contract 3G SIM card slot. It’s a 7″ 800×480 capacitive screen, the Qualcomm MSM7227 800Mhz ARM11 processor that can run Gingerbread now, ICS possibly soon, with the Adreno 200 graphics that supports most Android 3D games today.

This price is basically $99 without the 20% UK VAT tax. By far the cheapest 7″ capacitive 3G-enabled tablet.

Some other specs:
– 4GB internal storage, expandable with microSDHC cards
– Dimensions: 195 mm x 118 mm x 14.1 mm
– Weight: 490 g
– WiFi, Bluetooth, micro USB 2.0 slave port, microSD slot, front facing camera, G-sensor, microphone, built-in speaker, GPS

Pixel Qi at CES 2012

Posted by – January 17, 2012

The 1280×800 10.1″ Pixel Qi screen is ready, here it is demonstrated under a bright spotlight simulating the sun as well as in some prototypes of upcoming Android tablets. Founder, CEO and inventor Mary Lou Jepsen talks about the latest news from Pixel Qi, where they are going, what they are up to.

Blue Times shows $50 HiSilicon 3716 and AmLogic 8726 ARM Cortex-A9 Android Set-top-box

Posted by – January 16, 2012

Blue Times uses the Huawei HiSilicon single-core 1Ghz ARM Cortex-A9 as well as the single-core AmLogic ARM Corte-A9 for their Android Set-top-box.

E Ink On Every Smart Surface

Posted by – January 15, 2012

Exclusive 17-minute interview with E Ink’s CMO at CES, where they showed me a Triton color display for signage with color so saturated that it looked like an LCD except that it was thinner than OLED, sunlight readable, uses no backlights and uses very little power. I also saw the SURF display used in a hand drill which has not been filmed before. The 11.5″ 300DPI eDocument reader made in collaboration with Epson. The Triton color display based Ectaco eReader that had just won the CES innovation award, it is being deployed in Russian schools. New E Ink watches from Phosphor and Seiko. Finally, the Eton Ruckus music player with E Ink display that was launched this week was demonstrated, it is considered to be indestructible.

E Ink has shipped over 25 million E Ink screens for e-readers alone in 2011, that’s up from 10 million screens in 2010 and 4 million screens in 2009. Now E Ink is also working to expand into new markets, signage, appliances, everywhere. The idea is that more and more devices and surfaces may get an E Ink screen on them that thus by being bi-stable can show the informations for a long time without using any battery. While many electronic paper technology companies show samples, E Ink is actually in mass production with monochrome, color and segmented displays and they claim that no technology in the world comes close to the reading experience on E Ink’s displays and these displays are easy on the eyes since they don’t have a shiny background or light emitting backlight.

E Ink also provided me with following amazing video featuring the actual E Ink Pearl roll display material used in Nook, Sony, Kindle etc. The video was shot alongside the Charles river in Cambridge/Boston and you can see MIT (E Ink is MIT spin off) and Boston skyline in the background. The display is a few feet wide and can go one kilometer (it was 500 meters in this video):

YouTube keynote at CES 2012

Posted by – January 15, 2012

YouTube had a huge keynote by YouTube Content Partnerships manager Robert Kyncl at CES 2012, you can see it in its entirety here. The talk is about the amazing growth of YouTube, web video is about to represent 90% of all Internet bandwidth. YouTube works to monetize more and more of the web video content. I’d like them to overlay affiliated one-click purchases and price comparisons of the products video-blogged. I believe web video is a huge deal, just as it’ll consume 90% of the web’s bandwidth, it will also generate upwards 90% of the web’s and Google’s revenue, profit, learning, information, attention and time spent.

In the following clip, Stan Lee, the creator of the CSI TV show franchise, talks about user generated content on YouTube.

Motorola Kopin Golden-i at the Verizon booth at CES 2012

Posted by – January 14, 2012

The Motorola Kopin Golden-i is being showcased at the Verizon booth at CES 2012, demonstrating hands-free wearable computing user interfaces for Industrial uses such as Construction, Medical, Public safety, Utilities and more. I’ve been using this for the past 2 months to attempt to have a wearable computing augmented video-blogging system, using Google+ Hangouts On Air with the headmounted display showing a live chat and live status updates from Google+, Twitter, Email alerts and more.

Geniatech shows Ice Cream Sandwich on Set-top-box using AmLogic ARM Cortex-A9

Posted by – January 14, 2012

Shenzhen Geniatech shows their latest Set-top-box powered by the single-core AmLogic ARM Cortex-A9 processor running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.