Before I launch into my CES 2015 post, let me get a few other things out of the way first: I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and a happy new year! Cheers all around and here’s to making Nerdist even bigger and better in 2015!
And… Welcome to THE CHOBLOG!
It’s been a while since I posted my musings online beyond the quickie FB and Twitter hits, and now that I’ve found a dedicated space within Nerdist, I can’t wait to chat with you guys about anything and everything! Content-wise, you can look forward to more personal and in-depth posts regarding my views on gaming, my weird and wacky paranormal obsession via my podcast, Bizarre States, movies, tech, and any other pop culture mumbo-jumbo that piques my interest.
I’ll be posting this blog on a weekly basis and, fingers crossed, if it gains steam, I have no qualms with going daily! And what better way to launch The Choblog then talking some CES 2015?
I haven’t been to a CES since right before G4 went ka-boom! I think that was, what? Maybe 2012? While it was fun to attend, because of my noob reporter status at the channel, I got stuck reporting on fridges. Don’t get me wrong, LG has some amazeball fridges out there but, um… yeah… it’s a fridge.
That’s why, now that I’m here at CES 2015 and rolling solo, I can pick out what I want to cover. The show floor doesn’t open until tomorrow (Tuesday, January 6) but announcements are already rolling out, and the two big items that have caught my eye are: Wearable Tech and Gaming.
I’m planning on heading straight over to Apple to see if they will be showcasing their watch. I highly doubt they will, since they usually save those types of reveals for their own events. BUT one might see a 3rd-party accessories developer slip up and display one of their products for it, which could give us a better idea of what Apple might be planning. It’s happened in the past with iPads and iPhones, so it never hurts to keep your eyes peeled.
After that, I’ll be hitting up the Samsung booth. I currently have their Gear S watch and, while I’ve enjoyed it, for my lifestyle, I’ve found it to be more of a conversation piece rather than of practical use. Still, it’s the first time I’ve taken wearable tech seriously (not counting the workout bands that hit the world by storm. But I don’t exercise, so screw those things) and I’m curious to see any changes they may have made to their watch series in anticipation of Apple’s incoming competition.
Wearable tech isn’t limited to smartwatches, however. There’s also the much gossiped and smirked about, “Belty.” Developed by Paris-based company, Emiota, Belty is the current darling of CES even before the doors have opened. Debuted at CES Unveiled, Belty essentially measure a wearer’s waistline via built in motors. Emiota has the right idea as far as trying to take the wearable tech phase and utilize it into more “everyday” objects outside of smartwatches and exercise bands, but I feel bad enough when I put on my pants in the morning. I don’t need a motorized metal belt to body-shame me. Thanks but no thanks, Belty.
(I’m still going to go hunt it down and try it on though. Why? Sadisim. That’s why.)
This is the part in the post where I should mention Google Glass and Sony’s SmartEye but honestly, I kind of don’t care about those. Not much has changed in the smartglassses department. Maybe next year.
In the gaming arena it’s all about VR! VR! VR!!!!!! With Sony playing hard ball in the VR dept. with Project Morpheus, it leaves me wondering if they’re locked and loaded to take some of the wind out of the Oculus Rift’s sails here at CES. Maybe a release date and price point?
And in that same vein, here’s hoping that Oculus Rift commits to giving us a retail release announcement this week! While Msft is working on their own VR, since it’s still in the middle of development, I HIGHLY doubt we will be seeing anything from them. Which leaves us with Samsung’s GearVR, a light headset that attaches to a Galaxy 4 Note smartphone. (Although I can’t see the practicality in that from a mobile gaming angle. The absolutely LAST thing I want to do is drag around a VR headset for my phone.)
I have to admit, when this whole VR thing first started taking off with the Oculus Rift, I rolled my eyes and thought, “Oh yeah. Here we go. It’s 3D TVs all over again.” I swiftly changed my mind after experiencing the Oculus Rift VR Pacific Rim experience over at the Legendary booth during SDCC. (Full disclosure: Nerdist’s parent company is Legendary. So, yeah.. I could be blowing smoke up your butts to suck up to the boss, but lucky for you, I’m not. It was a rather epic experience.)
While the Pacific Rim experience was cool as hell, what it really did was show me the potential that I hadn’t been seeing despite all of the game developer play-throughs and videos I watched up to that point. I truly believe now that there is a place for retail VR, both for gaming and movies/TV that I think can and will, if done properly, take off. We’re not too far off having a VR headset in the home as common as your standard game controller.
Oh, and PS Now: As I’m sure you’ve heard, Sony changed the pricing structure for their PS Now service. It is now: 1 month = $19.99 & 3 months = $45.00. While I still think that’s a tad expensive for older games that you won’t technically own, at least knowing what you’re paying for is less confusing. Still, I’ll be purchasing all of those via a subscription/gift card or something. It would be dishonest of me if I didn’t say that all their high-profile hacks haven’t made me more than a little skittish of giving them my credit card info.
What about those 4K TVs, tho? I’m going to be darting my eyeballs about in the hopes of finding some affordable 4K television options. I will be seriously surprised if we don’t see some on the show floor. The only reason I can think of for there being a void in that arena would be a lack of available 4K content. However, Amazon announced that they’re currently ready to support 4K streaming via Amazon Prime Instant Video (and with no additional cost to members) and Netflix is nipping right at their heels planning their own 4K battle plan. Plus, let me just say how much I LOVE that THE INTERNET supports 4K before standard TV/Cable stations do. GO INTERNET! The only downside to 4K TVs is that, our current gaming consoles don’t support 4K…..yet.
Believe me when I say that the lack of 4K ability within my gaming system will not stop me from snagging a 4K TV, but man…do you know how glorious a Dragon Age: Inquisition, or Skyrim II, or FallOut 4, or Half-Life 3 would look in 4k!!!??? OMG! Half-Life 3 in4K!!!
OOOOOOMMMMGGGAAAWWWDDDD HALF-LIFE 3 CCCCCOOONNNFFIIIIRRMMEEEDDDDD!!!!!! WWWWRRRRRRRRRYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And with that, dear readers, I leave you with my first Nerdist CHOBLOG post from CES 2015. More posts shall follow sometime tomorrow — after I stand in line for hours waiting for a taxi, fight my way through crowds of businessmen and women who dress in suits and make me feel immature and inadequate, fling myself onto the show floor, and fight with YouTubers in order to try on the Oculus Rift first.
Keep your eyes peeled for my tomorrow, on CNET’S Tomorrow Daily Show with Ashley Esqueda (@AshleyEsqueda) where I’ll be guesting and talking more in-depth about what crazy shizz I find on the show floor.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter: @JessicaChobot, and get your daily dose of nerdomania over at Nerdist News, Monday through Friday! Hosted by me (except when it’s not, like right now because I’m here at CES).
This shit sure beats reporting on futuristic fridges.