UPFRONT FROM PAGE 4 which took us under a mediatypesaridefro mthe
Expo hall in the Vene- fallen tree that we barely keynote to the Palace in a
tian. The press literature cleared and into a dead fleetof red Suburbans.
I received recommended end among the reeds. Ever Or, they suggested,
lining up at 3 p.m. for the since, it’s been our motto we could simply walk
6: 30 p.m. speech. I split the to “always go to the left.” across the street.
difference, showing up at I employed that strategy Now, I’ve been to
4: 30, and found the press for the keynote, and some- Vegas many times. And
line stretched around the how wound up in the seventh I know that a recommen-corner, down the hall and row, despite my late arrival dation to “simply walk
back again. (Kind of like the to the line. (Of course, from across the street” when
taxi line at the airport.) that position, I was also pretty that street is the Vegas
I knew I had to take muchthelastpersontomake strip is afool’s errand.
quick action to get a good it out of the building.) Yet I fell for it any-
seat. Several years ago, I went from the keynote way.
some buddies and I went directlytothe Digital Experi- Also good to know,
white-water rafting. When ence show over at Caesar’s the Augustus Ballroom
we came to a fork in the Palace. Pepcom, which put is not in the Augustus
river, we chose to go right, on the show, offered us Tower at Caesar’s Pal-
ace. As a matter of fact, Tuesday, Microsoft gave out
THE YEAR OF SOLID STATE it’s clear on the other side of chocolates with Windows
the building. And, in Vegas, (not Windows Vista) brand-
that means trouble. ing to analysts and reporters.
—Andrew Garcia And in reviewing my exten-
sive collection of photos
CES Part III: from the day, I saw the Vista
Whither Vista? brand almost nowhere—not
even on Microsoft’s big Win-
dows tent pavilion.
Windows Vista was Microsoft’s Vista com-
e v e r y w h e r e — mitment is conspicuous by
a n d y e t n o w h e r e a t the absence of the operating
th i s y ear’ s C ons u m er system’s branding. CES has
E l e c t r o n i c s S h o w. been an important product
On the show floor, launchvenue,includingfor
Microsoft banners and Windows Vista. And CES
other promotional mate- 2008 was a natural venue for
rial reverted to Windows continuing to push out the
branding. When Vista Vistabrand. Instead,Micro-
branding did appear, some- soft emphasized Windows
thing else accompanied it, alone or Vista combined
such as “Windows Live,” with something else.
“Media Center” or “Win- “Microsoft may have rec-
dows Media Extender.” ognized Vista as [being] a
Has Microsoft given damaged brand,” said Paul
up on Windows Vista— DeGroot, an analyst from
as a brand, at least? The Directions on Microsoft.
answer is, perhaps yes. “Windows is the brand for
I didn’t immediately the long term.”
notice Vista’s absence at The market hasn’t warmly
CES.ButthenInoticedthat embraced Vista. The
during an evening event on [CON TINUED ON PAGE 9]
Already, 2008 is on track to become the year of solid
state, when hard-disk technology gets the boot from
notebooks and many consumer electronics devices.
Solid-state disk vendor SanDisk was just one of the
many storage manufacturers with massive booths at
this year’s CES. —Joe Wilcox