Why CES tells us 2013 is the year of clouds, sheep & less stress?

Doesn’t it seem like there’s been a lot of downplaying expectations for the 2013 CES show? Last week Walt Mossberg replied “So True” to Mike Isaac’s All Things Digital piece Welcome to CES: A Trade Show, Not a Tastemaker and yesterday, Macworld’s Jason Snell tweeted: “I’d say CES needs to be covered, but emphatically not like it used to be covered.”

Here’s my hypothesis on what they are observing: In 2013, we’re kind of tapped out on new stuff.

Free yourself from your hardware

The news at CES 2013 is TVs with a few more extra diagonal inches or lines of resolution. But in fairness, how much more can we expect? We just got 4 years of once-a-generation, game changing stuff – 100 inch TVs, iPads, Kindle’s, Androids, etc. I mean, it’s been a pretty impressive run in hardware!

There’s a natural slow down to get used to the stuff we have. That’s why software & dev are where you’ll feel the wows, oohs & ahhs. We have all this stuff. Now how do we use it?

I don’t mean consuming other people’s media, that’s easy. But what about the things you create? What about the stuff you are working on? Not just music or movies you download, but documents & presentations. Family photos & graphic designs.

Your digital life exists beyond your devices

That’s why 2013 is about personal cloud connectivity. And not just about how you can be more productive, but how you can be LESS stressed by the demands to be productive. Don’t get me wrong, it’s enormous that you can work on the same file whether you are at home, the office, or on a friend’s borrowed laptop. But what about that you can pass along that file, whether you are at home, the office, or at a friend’s?

When I was a kid, if my dad forgot a file at the office, and knew he needed it, he’d drive down at 9 o’clock at night to go get it. Forget productivity, that just sucks! Well, now, that’s irrelevant. You have all these vessels (computers, gadgets, phones) all these things with your digital life, and now, you don’t have to worry about what vessel you are carrying it on. The point is, your stuff exists outside of any single device. And now you have it. Wherever, whenever, on whatever.

In 2013, it’s not about 4000 more lines of resolution. It’s about personal freedom, creating, and using the digital age to relax.

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