CES 2012: Keynote speakers

January 5, 2012

Often a bit more substantial than what one can pick up from the hustle and bustle of the showroom floor, the keynote speeches at the annual Consumer Electronics Show can set the tone for the year ahead.

This year — apart from Microsoft’s usual (but final) keynote speech — the speakers list draws heavily from mobile carriers and manufacturers as well as automakers, though stalwarts such as Xerox and General Electric are represented as well. Here’s a breakdown of the keynote speakers by day.

Monday: Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer will have the floor for the last time — Microsoft is ending its run at CES this year — and is expected to talk up Windows Mobile, tease Windows 8 and probably throw in a thought or two about the future of home entertainment as it relates to the Kinect.

Tuesday: Consumer Electronics Association president and chief executive Gary Shapiro will share the stage with the chief executive of Qualcomm, Paul E. Jacobs. Shapiro recently told CNET that the main trends to watch are tablets, ultrabooks, green energy and smart cars.

Later that morning, the chairman of Daimler AG and the chief executive of Merecedes-Benz Dieter Zetsche will take over the spotlight. The afternoon brings yet another keynote speech, this time from Intel president and chief executive Paul Otellini.

Wednesday: Innovation will be the focus of Wednesday’s agenda, with keynote speeches from two panels. In the morning, Xerox, Verizon Communications and Ford will discuss innovation and its role in their companies’ success. In the afternoon, AT&T, General Electric, Hyundai, Facebook, Wal-Mart and Unilever will dish on marketing and branding on a global scale.

Hans Vestberg, the president and CEO of Ericsson will also give a keynote address in the afternoon.

Thursday: Rounding out the keynote speakers’ schedule is YouTube’s head of Global Content Partnerships Robert Kyncl, who will deliver the “Entertainment Matters” keynote speech on how the Web can be used for content distribution and the shifting entertainment ecosystem.

Related stories:

CES 2012: Tablets, ultrabooks and smartphones take center stage

CES 2012 preview: HP releases Omni All-in-one, Pavilion Phoenix h9 PCs

The Verge: CES 2012: Debut of a waterproof tablet?

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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