January 9, 2007
Brand Names at CES, NAIAS, Macworld: It's All About "Envy"
It's a hectic, but exciting Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas so far, and the list of new product names being introducted seems endless.
A few names caught my eye, like the new HP Voodoo Envy HW:201 gaming laptop. Why do they call it "Envy?" According to Rahul Sood, the cofounder of Voodoo PC, it's 100% handmade (takes 30-45 days to build one) and you can "trick it out" to a cost of $5,000.
Speaking of "Envy", GigaOM noted on Sunday (with evident satisfaction) that NetGear seems to be "taking its design cues from Apple and its product offerings" - everything is white with rounded edges. One commenter says "I see your Netgear iGear and raise you a Sony iGear."
The award of the day for offbeat product names, however, goes to The Ace Bayou Corp for its X Rocker and V Rocker - two media friendly "sound system chairs," products that bring new meaning to "rocking around the house."
But some big things are happening outside of CES, not the least of which is the press opening of the North American International Auto Show, which has the blogosphere agog with great new cars. Two brand names from yesterday that have come out big are the Camero and, amazingly, the Ford Airstream concept van which simply has to be seen to be believed. This silver van melds traditional lines with the Ford Edge to the concept and design of the Airstream, that silver, torpedo-like trailer that is a staple brand name of the 50's, likely making auto enthusiasts envious.
Once things get started on January 13th, I’ll be looking at greater depth at the retro brand names as well as new alternative fuel cars like the Chevy Volt and the Saab Biopower.
Another hot topic is that Steve Jobs gives the keynote at Macworld in San Francisco today. Stay tuned to find out if we finally get that phone from Cupertino, or if Apple has an HDTV in store for us.
Nick Wingfield, of the Wall Street Journal, wrote an insightful article this morning on the "great expectations" of Jobs' keynote today. The article points out that despite the incredible hurdles and barriers to entry to the wireless phone and interactive TV markets, consumers are willing to attach Apple's brand to anything entertainment now, and thereby have high expectations of an "iPhone" or "iTV" to be announced.
Whatever Jobs introduces today, many consumers are likely to be green with envy (or is that white with round edges?)
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