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The Best of the 2012 International CES

CES grows bigger than ever
While pundits have been discussing the demise of the Consumer Electronics Show - as they have been doing pretty much every year since it first started back in 1967 as a New York-based spin-off from the Chicago Music Show - the show's owners, CEA, have been seeing quite the opposite. At 1.861 million net square feet of exhibition space, this year's CES is the biggest yet, handily beating 2008's record of 1.857 million net square feet.

The 2012 International CES
If you don't like crowds, the CES isn't for you

While the majority of goods on display are a little out of the remit of a site such as ours - but impressive nevertheless, with LG's large-scale 55in Organic LED (OLED) TV set possibly the highlight of the consumer-oriented gear on show - the usual crowd was out in force showing off their latest and greatest creations.

Microsoft bids fare-thee-well
It wasn't all good news for the CEA, however: Microsoft, typically one of the first companies to offer a keynote speech at the show, announced that this year would be its last.

We'd like to say the company went out with a bang, but we'd be lying. Steve Ballmer, joined for some reason on stage by Ryan Seacrest, had little to say; the biggest announcement of the day being the launching of the Kinect for Windows programme, due to drop at the start of February.

Ballmer and Seacrest, CES 2012
Steve Ballmer and Ryan Seacrest chatting about very little

While the announcement of another Nokia-build Windows Phone got some interest, the remainder of the keynote was dull in the extreme. If you're having trouble sleeping, however, here's a soporific summary by Microsoft's Frank X. Shaw.