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CES 2013: What to expect as show officially opens

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While the news is already flowing liberally out of Las Vegas, the International CES tech show is actually entering its first full day of exhibition Tuesday.

Anchoring Tuesday’s events will be three keynotes. Consumer Electronics Association president Gary Shapiro will take to the stage to sketch out his vision of the year in consumer electronics. Panasonic’s Kazuhiro Tsuga also will speak today about what 2013 may bring for his company and focus particularly on energy-efficient technology.

Finally, Verizon’s chief executive and chairman Lowell McAdam will anchor the evening’s events with a keynote. Verizon has previously announced big company news including the launch of its 4G LTE network and new exclusive models at the show; many industry watchers expect at least one such announcement from the keynote.

Other major announcements on tap include conferences from Audi, ZTE and T-Mobile.

Audi has already confirmed that it’s showing off some of its autonomous vehicle technology at this year’s show, having recently been granted a license to test its driverless cars on Nevada roads. The company has already tested a driverless car on the Pikes Peak Highway, completing a 12.42-mile run — complete with plenty of bends and curves — in a car that drove itself. The Audi keynote is set for 2 p.m., Eastern and should show off plenty of connected car technology.

ZTE is announcing a new flagship phone, the ZTE Grand S, which it’s touting as the world’s thinnest 5-inch full HD smartphone. The company has given away plenty of information about the Grand S in “preview” events: the phone is made of ceramic, is 6.9 mm (.3 inches) thick and may have a 13 MP camera, as Endgadget reports. But ZTE has yet to release pricing information or a hint about who’ll be able to buy the phone.

As for T-Mobile, the carrier is widely expected to talk about its network upgrades, namely a deeper look at the full-scale launch of its 4G LTE network. T-Mobile recently announced a deal with MetroPCS to help the company more quickly build out its high-speed network and the company has already committed to launching an LTE network in top markets this year.

TMo News, a blog dedicated to news about T-Mobile, notes that there’s also an outside chance that the company may talk about its agreement to carry Apple products this year — namely, the iPhone. But, the blog’s David Beren noted it seems more likely that the carrier would save such a big debut for a separate event closer to the date that Apple devices hit shelves in T-Mobile stores.

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