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Daily Debrief: The shrinking CESThose of us trekking to Las Vegas for the annual Consumer Electronics Show in January of 2009 will have a smaller show floor to explore. On this Daily Debrief, CNET's Kara Tsuboi and Erica Ogg discuss why companies are scaling down their exhibit space...
[ Music ] ^M00:00:04 >> Welcome to the Daily Debrief. I'm CNET's Kara Tsuboi, here with Erica Ogg, the head writer for Crave, CNET's gadget blog. And we're talking about CES, the Consumer Electronic Show that goes on in Las Vegas in the beginning of January. I don't know about you but I'm getting butterflies in my stomach just thinking about the madness that goes on there. >> Yes. It's definitely madness. There's a lot going on. >> But it sounds like this year's -- or 2009's I should say -- could be a little quieter than years past. >> Well, I think maybe the show floor might be -- have a little less buzz than usual. >> Mm-hmm. >> There are some big companies, names we'd recognize, that are not doing booths this year in the Las Vegas Convention Center. But they're not not going. They're just -- >> Right. >> -- doing private suites at, you know, all of the hotels in Vegas. So I think what the Consumer Electronics Association, which puts on CES every year is saying is that they have the same number of exhibitors, and presumably, probably the same number of attendees, but that the show floor is -- because it's so expensive -- is an area where -- >> Shrinking. >> -- some companies are cutting back. >> And this is all motivated, of course, by this crummy economy we have found ourselves in. >> Yeah. >> And just exhibitors not wanting to spend -- how much money per square foot to exhibit? >> I think it's like $35.00 per square foot. >> Eye-yi-yi. >> But what's interesting, too, is that, you know, people make -- these companies make these commitments to CES months in advance. So some companies that, you know, have said -- like Phillips, for instance, pulled out many months ago. And that had less to do with the economy; more to do with they're changing product line-up. They don't make TVs for the North American market anymore, and that kind of thing. So it's not all motivated by the economy. But yeah, it's gonna be -- it'll be an interesting line-up this year. >> What are some of the other big names we've heard that are, you know, scaling back a little bit, or just having the suites, like you said? >> Well, for instance, Yahoo in years past has done a giant tent out in the parking lot. >> Right. >> You can't miss it. >> Yep. >> It's right next to Microsoft. And they said they're not doing that this year, and they're just going to do a suite. And so they can meet with their customers. They can meet with the press, and that kind of thing. So they'll still be there. I think Seagate also said -- the hard drive maker -- that they're just gonna be doing a suite. Cisco has always -- in just a suite, and this your they said initially they were thinking they were going to do a booth, and then kind of went, "Mmm, maybe it's not the right time to do that." So -- >> Yeah. Interesting. Well, I guess when you do think about it, a lot of what is on display at CES, it's peripherals. It's not necessarily needs for families for consumers. So, you know, it goes to reason that the trickle down would impact something like this. >> Right. >> Yeah. Interesting. Are you excited? Are there any things that you're looking forward to covering while you're there? >> I -- the spectacle in itself is interesting. >> Absolutely. >> It's kind of overwhelming. >> It sure is. >> And it always is kind of awe-inspiring to see these giant booths with, you know, 300 TVs and that kind of thing. So -- >> Yeah. Absolutely. It's like it's so -- gosh. January eighth through eleventh, we will be there. >> Mm-hmm. >> And of course, people can follow CNET News for all the continuing coverage. >> Absolutely. >> Well, great. Thank you so much, Erica Ogg. I'm Kara Tsuboi. We'll see you on the next Daily Debrief. ^M00:03:04 [ Music ]