Skype at CES 2012: It’s All About The Consumer

The Consumer Electronics Show is the industry’s largest international gathering that tends to take over Las Vegas for four days. Skype at CES 2012 is rather low key this year with no press announcements, a small “open air” Skype Lounge in the Central Plaza in front of the Las Vegas Convention Center and a kiosk in the Microsoft booth.

Skype Lounge.Logo.CES2012.180pxThe Skype Lounge features a demonstration of the recently announced TelyHD Skype video calling for any TV set and Skype Video Calls on a large screen with various local Las Vegas locations such as a museum and some school attractions. Occasionally they get worked up with “jump time” throwing out free cell phone socks to passersby. The biggest issue here is visitor traffic; due to its location barricaded largely by a key roadway for shuttle busses and taxis, it’s a little like the barriers put up by an urban freeway.



Skype Lounge

Tely HD Video discussion



Discussion Abounds

Video Call with the Las Vegas Robot

SkypeMS.ShareTheMoment.CES2012.120pxMeanwhile over at the Skype kiosk in the Microsoft booth are two sides; one with four PC’s where visitors can make Skype calls; on the other side a 55” LCD TV screen receiving an HD video transmission from the Skype Lounge. Lots of traffic; but no presentations as done at some other Microsoft kiosks (Windows 8, Kinect, Windows Phone, etc.)



Make Free Skype Calls

Skype for TV at 55”
(720p HD, no pixelating)

On the show floor so far I have seen Skype in the Logitech booth (new C920 1080p HD webcam), Blue Microphone with a unique USB microphone for laptops and NVidia where there is another TelyHD demonstration.

I’ll have more to report on TelyHD after an interview later today.

And our presence did get tweeted.

Bottom line: It is called the Consumer Electronics Show where the focus is on the business relationships behind end user experiences for consumers. While Skype had no news announcements, they focused on demonstrating the user experience and applications of video calling. At the same time I suspect Skype is working out the path to its incorporation into Microsoft products – Live, Xbox/Kinect, Office, Windows Phone, etc. And we’ll hear about it at some Microsoft -sponsored event – tying in with their reasoning for dropping out of CES as both keynote and exhibitor.

About Jim Courtney

Bringing over thirty years' experience in the sales, marketing and management of cutting edge technology businesses.

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