Last week's 2012 International CES event in Las Vegas was a record-breaking show on several levels for the Consumer Electronics Association.The 2012 International CES was the largest in the event's 44-year history, with a record number of more than 3,100 exhibitors across the largest show floor in CES history - 1.861 million net square feet of exhibit space - and drawing a record of more than 153,000 attendees, including more than 34,000 international attendees. More than 20,000 new products were launched last week across various locations in Las Vegas. "The 2012 CES was the most phenomenal show in our history, generating more energy and excitement across every major industry touching technology than ever before," said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of CEA, the owner and producer of the International CES.
Amazon's Zappos.com, the popular online shoe site, was the victim of a cyber attack by a hacker who gained access to part of the company's internal network through one of its servers, Chief Executive Tony Hsieh said in an email to employees Sunday. In the email to shoppers, Zappos said customers' personal information -- including their name, email address, billing and shipping addresses, phone number, the last four digits of their credit card number and/or the cryptographically scrambled password on their account -- may have been compromised.
A group of Pro-Palestinian hackers launched its latest offensive against Israel today (Jan. 16), hitting the country's stock exchange, three banks and El Al Airlines and escalating an international battle that began earlier this month. The denial-of-service attacks, which disrupted the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE), El Al and the First International Bank of Israel (and two subsidiaries, Massad and Otzar Hahayal), came just after the Saudi Arabian hacker known as 0xOmar warned the Jerusalem Post of his plan to take down the critical Israeli services. El Al and the TASE both made swift recoveries and were back online and operating normally this morning with no trades or flights affected. The banks said their marketing sites had been hacked but client services were not damaged. 0xOmar has not claimed responsibility for the hack.
CES is now over and it's time to sift through what was deemed to be important and what was just fluff. One thing that is clear and that is there are going to be a lot of upset ATT and TMobile customers. Phones sold last year by the two cell carriers were being touted as being 4G but using the HSPA Plus technology. Now they are coming out with new 4G Which is based on LTE. Many folks who bought "4G" phones last year thought they had LTE 4G but they didn't. They are now waking up to the fact that there is old 4G and new 4G, but the 4G standard isn't being met by eith old or new. 4G, as classified by the IEEE standard, is 5 times faster than even new 4G can handle. Verizon's 4G LTE at least always had the LTE in the name, so people knew a little better what they were buying.
The new WIFI standard was also made clear at CES. 802.11 G and N have been popular for years, but the new standard is 802.11AC. Instead of a mere 100 Mb speed, AC will have 1.3 Gb speed and will be available to consumers at the end of this year. If you don't have hardware capable of AC you will be able to buy a USB AC card for laptops and netbooks. Tablets and Phones will be left out. To add to the confusion some companies are referring To AC as 5G, when this has nothing to do with cellular wireless because AC run in the 5 Ghz WIFI range.
The growth for Facebook has slowed in the past year but it's possible they may have hit the 1 billionth registered user. Zuckerberg is now looking to take the company public very in May, but he says for now he is focusing on more things to waste our time in social networking. Twitter has had faster growth, however, and they will reach their 500 millionth user in March according to analysts. Facebook is now shrinking in the US, but Twitter continues to grow everywhere. Google + is also continuing to grow at a rapid rate. At some point I believe they will al start to even out in the coming years, or there will be a merger.
According Computer World, devices running ARM versions of Win8 will not be able to run other OSes, like Android, thanks to something called Secure Boot. A version of Secure Boot is built into many mobile devices - namely phones and tablets - in order to avoid bootloader mobile attacks and, obviously, to keep things locked down. Windows Phone, for example, prevents folks from installing anything into the bootloader nor can they run off-brand software. However, folks love them some Linux and for these devices to be completely locked down could disappoint the hacker contingent. Microsoft says that you can disable Secure Boot on larger systems, however, noting in the design documents.
Apple's next iPad, expected to go sale in March, will sport a high-definition screen, run a faster processor and work with next-generation 4G wireless networks, according to three people familiar with the product. The company's manufacturing partners in Asia started ramping up production of the iPad 3 this month and plan to reach full volumes by February, said one of the people, who asked not to be named because the details aren't public. The tablet will use a quad-core chip, an enhancement that lets users jump more quickly between applications, two of the people said. Apple has sold more than 40 million iPads, generating at least $US25.3 billion in sales.
Iconic film company Polaroid is determined not to get left behind in an increasingly digital age. A new Android-powered point-and-shoot camera is part of that reinvention. CNNMoney checked out the Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera at the Consumer Electronics Show last week in Las Vegas. The camera features a 3.2-inch touchscreen and the full Android app market. It's a 16-megapixel camera with a 3x optical zoom, and it includes Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.
Internet giants Google and Facebook told an Indian court on Monday that it is not possible for companies to block offensive content that appears on their websites, in a case that has stoked fears about censorship in the world's largest democracy. Google and Facebook are among 21 companies that have been asked to develop a mechanism to block objectionable material, after a private petitioner took the websites to court over images deemed offensive to Hindus, Muslims and Christians. At the heart of the dispute is a law passed last year in the country that makes companies responsible for user content posted on their websites, requiring them to take it down within 36 hours in case of a complaint.
email from listeners:
Ethan from Seattle asks "What is the single most exciting product for CES 2012?"