CES 2009: Famed blogger on ’09 trends

I caught up with All Things D and bigwig industry reporter Kara Swisher at CES today. Swisher moderated a panel called “What will they think of next, Consumer Technology in 2025” that featured panelists including VPs from Lenovo, Intel, and Qualcomm. After the panel and a little “Where-in-the-world-is-Yahoo” guilty-pleasure chatter* between us, Swisher shared a few thoughts on trends in online and emerging media for the coming year–and if she thinks there is a fail-safe place for advertisers to hedge their sacred bets this year:

Other than this insight from Swisher, the main takeaways from the panelists was four-fold:

-Where consumer technology is concerned, simplicity wins; the group agreed that Flip Video is a portrait of a single-function device that has demonstrated remarkable success because it does just one thing–but really well, and really simply (we at the Lab have been on board from the start, it’s definitely one of the best consumer products of the past five years).

-Telephones and the computer will not merge, nor will the Internet and TV (see our mobile and gaming expert Josh Lovison’s passionate views on that topic here); essentially, said the panelists, consumers don’t necessarily want a device that does everything, or at least not in the current incarnations presented to consumers.

-They predicted we would start physically interfacing with platforms like Facebook or in video conferencing environments. They didn’t specify exactly what this would look like, but they gave a few examples of technologies already being used for remote conferences or in medical settings that are creating physical interfaces with the virtual world. Any readers with further insight, please share.

-Swisher also agreed that E Ink is making incredibly rapid progress to become a reality in our everyday lives within the next couple of years–we’ll keep coming back to the future of print, because as a new eMarketer study published today shows (see it here if you have eMarketer access), online and print publications are in even greater dire straits, and they’re going to need some new solutions to survive.

*(Swisher is one of the best sources for Yahoo-related news and has covered the ongoing Yahoo saga regularly, and full disclosure, I am a former Yahoo Editor)