Macworld conference and expo in San Francisco goes head-to-head with the 40th annual CES (Consumer Electronics Association) show in Las Vegas. Both conferences kick off Monday 8 January and there will be no shortage of blogs and other websites covering the news. What Read/WriteWeb will do is filter the best of it for you, focusing on the most promising web technology announcements and product demos.It's going to be a big week of tech news, as Apple's
So what will we see from the shows this year?
What Web technology we can expect from Macworld
Web 2.0 Workgroup member and Mac fan Joshua Porter, the sites to watch for Macworld news are MacRumors, ThinkSecret, and Daring Fireball. Josh thinks that Apple will be "making a huge social software push" at Macworld 07, citing the the next release of OS X (code-named Leopard) and the rumored iPhone as two key products. He also suggests that Apple will add social and recommendation features to iTunes (a la last.fm, Pandora and also Netflix), along with announcements around podcasting, iTV and the iWeb/iLife suite of apps.According to
From a high level, what's clear is that Apple will push more into the media field this year. In 2006 they dominated online music, with the incredible success of iPod/iTunes - so expect Apple to try to extend that with movies/TV. Also the iPhone is an intriguing rumor. Several people have pointed out that there is room in the market for a super-elegant VoIP-enabled mobile phone, which of course plays to Apple's design strengths.
Overall, I'm with Josh in that I would like to see more social Web features from Apple in their products. What's more, these features should be cross-platform and allow Apple users to interact with Windows users via web standards. Especially when it comes to iTV and Apple's digital hub strategy, a.k.a. Apple in your living room - it is crucial that users aren't restricted to just Apple hardware in order to use the likes of iTV. As Steve O'Hear pointed out recently, Apple could easily create an Internet ecosystem around iTV, by allowing third parties to create plug-ins to connect to web services other than iTunes.
Also, from the 'maybe asking too much' department: how about a Web Office suite from Apple based on iWorks '07?
What Web technology we can expect from CES
CES is generally regarded as the world's largest and most successful technology launchpad and gadgets trade show. This year it will reportedly host 2,700 exhibitors. The following list of past product debuts shows that it's a stage for big technology announcements:
keynote speech at 6.30pm tonight, discussing his thoughts on digital content's future. However Mary Jo Foley isn't expecting much in the way of Windows Live announcements at CES, although it would be odd if they didn't show off the new Windows Live for TV beta - particularly given Bill's keynote topic. Note also there is a Windows Vista RTM lab happening now, pre-CES, which fellow kiwi Mauricio Freitas is covering.Expect Microsoft to make some announcements at CES. Bill Gates is doing a
Will we see much from the other Internet powerhouses, Google and Yahoo, at CES? Yahoo is holding a press conference on Monday at 12.15pm, to announce new Mobile Internet services. However there's no official sign of Google at CES '07 - remember they did an entertaining keynote last year, featuring co-founder Larry Page along with comedian Robin Williams. So given the absence of Google and just one appearance by Yahoo, I'm beginning to wonder if we'll see much in the way of Web technology announcements at CES this year? As Michael Gartenberg noted, "it's about PCs, phones and traditonal media this year."
In any case making the first waves at CES is a 'Digital Entertainer HD' product from NETGEAR. It will stream "HD [high definition] movies, YouTube videos, iTunes music and more from PCs, Storage Devices and the Internet to Home Entertainment Systems." Dave Winer is skeptical about the product working "for most people". NB: Photo above is from Dave.
It's going to be an exciting week for technology. If Web Technology is your thing, stay tuned (and subscribe if you haven't already) to Read/WriteWeb for as-it-happens analysis of Web Tech news from Macworld and CES.