First thoughts on the 2012 International CES

January 16, 2012, By Daniel Rapcencu

Now the hustle and bustle of the 2012 International CES (Consumer Electronics Show) is over and everyone has arrived back home.  Everyone can look back and see the entire show as a huge event rather that the millions of eye-catching lights, booths, sequined presenters, and trinkets that filled your pockets and literature sacks.

Over 1.86 million square feet of space (37 football fields worth according to CES literature, but it seems a lot more than that at floor level) houses more than 3,100 vendors.

As a veteran of CES shows, I tell you the #1 attraction for the experienced attendee is the shuttle service.  You will walk more than you have in any day of your life with the exception of marathon runners.  If you see everything, you could surpass that number too.

The HUGE venue at the Las Vegas Convention Center is looped by a shuttle service that stops at five points along the perimeter.  This saved miles of walking when you first arrived with map in hand to hit the “must see” products first and pick up the trinkets before they ran out.

There is also a Golf Cart Intraconnect which will take you from Central Hall 5 to the South Halls 1 and 2.  There are also various shuttles to some of the hotels when you tire out or at the end of the day for the more experienced trade show traveler.

The Las Vegas Monorail was (and is) a great way to travel to and from hotels on “The Strip” and the Las Vegas Convention Center.  The $50 week-long pass is well worth it saving you from a long wait for hotel shuttles and cabs at the end of each show day.

Speaking of creature comfort features, there are ample food and drinks available (and the accompanying toilets for output).  Coffee and soft drinks as well as water are to be had in exchange for some cash.

I recommend freezing a couple of bottles of water the night before and putting them in your carry-all or backpack.  You can then have some really cold water when you need it without having to wait in a line.

If you looked closely, you could even find a place to get a free massage.

There is an Interactive Map to help you find your way around or locate a specific gadget or company.

The show floor was divided into 25 separate “TechZones”.  Each zone covers a unique topic and market.  More than 15 product categories are also represented.

A social Media Lounge gave you a place to go to tweet and network.  This was a crowded gathering place for all, but with some patience, the right timing and a bit of luck you could take the weight off of your feet and work the fingers on the keys.

The automotive section has always been a favorite of mine.  I have never been disappointed in that section.  This was truly some eye candy for the car enthusiast.

Naturally, I love the portable electronics with tablets, smartphones and 50 or so ultrabooks in this year’s displays.  I was looking forward to the Nokia Lumia 800 and I was not disappointed.

At the health and wellness section Jillian Michaels gave the fitness technology keynote speech.  She is one of this country’s health and fitness experts.  You might recognize her from her caring but firm coaching on The Biggest Loser.

I am sure you will think about Jillian at the end of each day as you take off your shoes in the evening as be thankful for all the weight you lost roaming around the displays.

No matter what you might be looking for, you will definitely find it here.  If you have never been to a CES show, I highly recommend it.

I also highly recommend getting into shape and purchasing some comfortable footwear.  Be sure to break them in for a few months beforehand.

Photos: 2012 International CES

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