International CES Gears Up With Press Day
January 5, 2016 at 2:54 PM (PT)
By PERRY MICHAEL SIMON in LAS VEGAS: Press Day at INTERNATIONAL CES TUESDAY (1/5) featured a full day of press conferences by consumer electronics and automotive firms and panels looking at how the new tech landscape has altered the business of HOLLYWOOD.
Among the early panels, a discussion of Internet TV focused on the relative difficulty of using streaming technology, privacy issues (noting that in season 3 of "Hannibal," the titular character was caught based on tracking of his online shopping preferences, EMC/ISILON's TOM BURNS noted that losing privacy when using online media is "a problem that can't be solved"), marketing (ICM's JONATHAN PERELMAN proclaiming "there is no more effective marketing than word of mouth" but that when automated recommendations move beyond being based merely on prior activity, "that'll really open up" content discovery), and how the different nature of digital delivery and binge watching have changed the way content is conceived and whether product placement will evolve into total sponsorship of shows without commercial breaks.
Another panel looked at how content is being merged into new technologies and formats on a growing number of devices, with panelists analyzing millennial content consumption habits. In the afternoon, a panel on contextual advertising started with substitute moderator and former COMCAST EVP/General Counsel TERRY BIENSTOCK noting that product placement was rampant in early TV and network radio, with sponsors incorporated into the scripts and plots. "These things have been done before," he noted, "(and) some work and some don't," introducing a discussion on introducing marketing messages in content on various platforms, from "second screen" content tied to television shows to screens on treadmills.
Virtual reality headsets, as expected, were among the major attractions, with HTC announcing a new version of its Vive, the Vive Pre, to be available to consumers in APRIL. SAMSUNG unveiled a new super-thin line of TVs, new models of its Gear S2 watch, and other new equipment, including a soundbar with DOLBY Atmos sound. Coming at the end of the afternoon will be SONY's press presentation, which once again eschews the standard Press Day MANDALAY BAY locale in favor of its booth in the LAS VEGAS CONVENTION CENTER's Central Hall.