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Posted at 10:31 AM ET, 01/ 5/2011

CES 2011 preview: Steve Ballmer's keynote speech

By Hayley Tsukayama

ballmer.jpg(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has been tapped (again) to give the keynote speech at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas at 6:30 PST on Wednesday. CES is the premiere electronics trade show and one of the best annual indicators of which technology may take off for the year.

This will be the third year in a row the Microsoft chief has taken center stage, and as Forbes has mentioned, Ballmer is often right on target in predicting the year's big trends for electronics companies -- even if Microsoft itself doesn't always follow up. (Last year, Ballmer showed off Microsoft's Slate tablet PCs during his keynote, before Apple's iPad took the tablet prize of 2010.)

This year, tech junkies are expecting Ballmer to show more tablets, announce a version of Windows that runs on ARM chips, tease a bit about a Windows 8 and possibly unveil a Microsoft set-top box to take on Google TV and Apple TV.

According to another rumor that surfaced Tuesday evening, Ballmer will discuss the Windows Phone 7's first update. Endgadget said that the update, called NoDo, will "apparently add copy / paste, CDMA location support (which might be the only thing holding up Verizon and Sprint from launching at this point), support for additional Qualcomm chip sets, and miscellaneous bug fixes." (The name is not, as rumored, a dig at Google's Android 1.6, aka Donut, but an inside joke about a lost bet involving doughnuts.) The update is expected to drop in February.

No matter what Ballmer reveals at CES, the presentation should be a good show. Microsoft hired a creative consultant, Chet Logothestian, to coach Microsoft's CES delegation. Will there be Elvises?

Rob is in Las Vegas and will be covering the keynote. So stay tuned for updates tonight, and check back with The Washington Post for CES 2011 coverage the rest of the week.

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CES 2011: Washington Post coverage from the main showroom floor

CES: RCA unveils portable broadcast TV devices, reaching for new viewers

Weekly video: Packing for CES

By Hayley Tsukayama  | January 5, 2011; 10:31 AM ET
Categories:  CES 2011  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: AT&T's first 4G Phone?
Next: CES 2011: iPad 2 case at CES in line with rumors


Four comical cartoons dedicated to the ridiculous hype of CES 2011. Each is one minute long.

An eBook reader with an incredible paper display! See it at

An incredible new TABLET appears at CES:

Favorite Tablet is selected:

A special CES 2011 report in 3D! Who needs content?! It's in 3D!!!

We'll be at CES and hope to create more.

Posted by: stevem64 | January 5, 2011 11:26 AM | Report abuse

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