Read on for a company-by-company breakdown of what we expect to see at CES 2015.
Update December 29: Samsung's CES MO? IoT. A report out of Korea revealed the firm will use its keynote to lay out its Internet of Things strategy, one that will bolster its slipping hold on the smartphone and tablet spaces. In addition to IoT, Samsung will reportedly lay out a common platform for connected home apps as a short term solution.
Update December 16: It's a very long shot, but there are whispers the Galaxy S6 may in fact show its face at CES 2015. Why is it a long shot? The reasons are almost innumerable, so here's just one; Kim Hyun-suk, Samsung's head of visual display, was quoted as saying "there will be no surprise shows [at CES]." We take that to mean no S6, though of course, anything is possible.
Update December 11: One thing is for sure; Samsung plans to bring Tizen TV to CES. Kim Hyun-suk revealed a Tizen TV will be there for people to "meet," though per his above quote, we doubt we're in for any earth-shattering announcements.
Update December 5: Samsung has sent out formal invitations to its CES 2015 keynote and press conference. The press conference will be "a journey to discover Samsung's latest innovations that will create new possibilities and shape the future," and the place we'll likely see most if not all of Samsung's announcements. It goes down at 2 pm PT on Monday, January 5. The keynote begins at 6:30 pm PT on January 5; President & CEO BK Yoon will discuss the Internet of Things and "how it will transform our lives."
What else we expect to see from Samsung...
Samsung's CES 2014 press conference will live on in infamy thanks to Michael Bay, but this year we expect the Korean firm to rebound with products that steal the show, not stage-ditching directors.
It's par for the course Samsung will unveil its latest TV line at CES, and we expect a follow-up to the bendable TV unveiled last time around (maybe one that folds in half!). Some of the firm's CES '14 televisions had gorgeous curves, making a repeat of sloped screens highly likely.
But that leaves us wondering, what else? Will we see the next iteration of Galaxy Pro tablets? It's possible. A new laptop? Slightly less likely, though not a stretch. More washing machines? Oh, you know it.
What would really knock our socks off is an update to the company's smartwatch and fitness tracker line-up and, if we can be so bold, some talk around Gear VR. That's all speculation on our part, but not out of the realm of possibility.
Update January 4: Are you ready for 2015 to be "the breakout year for OLED TVs?" Even if you aren't, LG Display sure is, and the company plans to introduce a number of OLED products at CES to prove it. Among them is a 55-inch UHD curved OLED panel for television sets and various sizes of UHD OLED displays. The Art Slim series, an ultra-light and thin set of 55- and 65-inch UHD panels, also made the CES cut.
LG Display's wares won't stop with TVs; the Advanced In-cell Touch (AIT) technology will make its CES debut. The tech is designed for larger IT devices, such as a 15.6-inch notebook panel. Curved Plastic OLED displays for wearables and automotives are set to get a crack at CES, though this along with a 55-inch transparent Full HD LCD display were labeled "future display market" technologies by the company.
Update December 29: A steady flow of pre-CES LG news has surfaced in recent weeks, and the latest is a set of Wi-Fi speakers that will join the company's Music Flow system. Two sound bars, a wireless speaker and a 3D streaming Blu-ray player are now part of the Music Flow mix.
Update December 18: LG dropped another pre-CES tidbit the week before Christmas by announcing webOS 2.0 will be unveiled during the Las Vegas event. The updated Smart TV platform is said to be simpler and more intuitive than the first iteration. A better UI is matched by more services like Amazon and Netflix. webOS 2.0 is due to show its face on a new line of TVs revealed at CES.
Update December 16: LG unveiled a new line of 4K UHD TVs in the pre-CES build up that use quantum dot technology for improved color saturation and wider palette. Nano-sized crystal dots are used to emit various colors, depending on their size, can help improve the picture color reproduction rate by more than 30%. What's more, the quantum dots (the coolest TV tech name ever?) are also said to improve the screen's overall brightness. Look out for the new Quantum Dot TV line at CES.
Update December 1: Well, things just got a little more interesting for LG. Word from some Android Authority sources is that the company will go on a Vegas bender, literally, and show off the LG G Flex 2. While the first G Flex was more gimmick than gimme product, the second gen is said to be a major upgrade over the original. In addition to its signature curve, the G Flex 2 will reportedly have a high-res OLED screen and small form factor. What's more, the phone can apparently self-heal even better than before.
Update December 29: According to a report from late December, Sony plans to launch the Xperia Z4 Tablet Ultra in the first half of 2015. If the slate, rumored to measure 12.9 inches, is to launch in early 2015, it seems plausible it could make its first appearance at CES.
Update December 19: Talk about a beautiful nightmare - Sony has released a very surreal teaser trailer for CES 2015. From a pregnant woman to a painted face to an all-eyeball closeup, Sony's clip has us scratching our heads. There are some hints to be gleaned; the "5" in the elevator and lollipop are likely references to Android 5.0 and a possible glimpse at a super slim TV.
Check the teaser out for yourself:
Update December 16: Or maybe we won't see the new Xperia line at CES? A mid-December report has the Xperia Z4 Compact and Z4 Ultra rocking Snapdragon 810 processors, a chip set that's reportedly in short supply. If the new phones are set to sport the 810s, it may not be until later in 2015 we actually lay our eyes on them.
What else we expect to see from Sony...
Sony always comes out swinging at CES, and we expect this year to be no different.
The company is hosting the prerequisite press conference on January 5, and there it plans to parade "the latest products and technology in 4K UHD, Hi-Res Audio, Digital Imaging and Mobile." If that doesn't spell it out for you, we're not sure what will.
While the thought of more (affordable?) 4K TVs is certainly tantalizing, the possibility of seeing the Xperia Z4 onstage is what really piques our interest. The firm announced its new Exmor RS IMX230 camera sensor in mid-November, and though it packs the same 21MP resolution as the Xperia Z3's camera, it has a number of new features, including a CMOS image sensor that can track rapidly moving subjects.
A report from PhoneArena has the handset, said to come equipped with a larger QHD screen, joined at CES by an even heftier Xperia Z4 Ultra. Among the rumored upgrades, both new phones could sport a heaving 4GB of RAM. What those extra GBs will bring is anyone's guess, but they'll sure look good on a spec sheet.
We also expect Sony to return to the wearable conversation; the tech is poised to be a major focus of CES 2015, and Sony should have more to say on its Core fitness tracker and other wearable goods.
Don't sleep on Asus; the firm released two trailers for a new ZenFone set for a CES unveiling.
Though short, the trailers (viewable on Asus' Facebook page) offer a number of clues. The first flashes what looks like two rear cameras. The second, longer teaser gives another fervent glimpse at dual rear camera lenses as well as a dual flash. The tagline "See what others can't see" also points to added camera functionality.
The second video also spends an odd amount of time on what appears to be a button, indicating a new one (with added functionality) is situated on the next ZenFone.
HTC, it seems, does have CES 2015 plans after all.
A company spokesperson said in early December the One M8 maker planned to debut a new wearable in Las Vegas, though it won't be a smartwatch, as has been previously rumored. The product is said to be "very different from anything currently on the market," though of course HTC would say that.
For the device, HTC will reportedly work closely with firms who have already made headway in the activity app space, signalling we could be in for a fitness tracker or something else along those lines.
HTC also used CES week to announce the Desire 320, its latest budget blower.
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