Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2011 | 6:11 p.m.
Pop phenomenon Lady Gaga will keep a yearlong promise when she arrives on The Strip to shake up the 44th Annual International Consumer Electronics Show that begins Thursday for four days. It’s the globe’s greatest gathering of gee-whiz electronics to take consumers into the future.
Amid the geeks, gadgets and gizmos, Gaga will unveil her secret Polaroid Grey Label techno project. She’s the company’s creative director, and one year ago here at CES, she tantalized attendees with a vow to return and “blow us away” with her technological creations.
Not only is Stefani Germanotta arriving after just being crowned the top-selling magazine cover girl of 2010, but she also has been lauded as the queen of Twitter, with an incredible 7,587,933 followers, which is now probably more than 7.6 million and growing. Her Little Monster fans, though, might be far more excited about her new CD Born This Way. It’s scheduled to drop May 23, with a single Feb. 13, and supposedly will show her naked backside under a tailored jacket!
Gaga leads a large celebrity contingent to CES, which is -- as of today -- expecting 2,700 exhibitors for more than 126,000 conventioneers from 50 countries -- increases over last year. Each year, CES attracts the who’s who captains of industry from technology and related industries to check out the latest advances and products. It’s the ultimate preview of technologies, content, products and services.
CES previewed milestone products including the VCR, CD player, HTDV, satellite radio and 3D HDTV. So many delegates will pack hotels, clubs, shows and restaurants that the Las Vegas Monorail is extending hours from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m. This year, Sony says that “anything you can imagine you can now make real.”
Last January, Lady Gaga told us she had signed on as creative director with Polaroid and had begun work on a series of “prototypes in marrying the fields of fashion/technology/photography innovation.” On Thursday, we’ll get to see the fruits of her labor. If you’re not in town for CES, you can watch her unveil it live on Polaroid.com at 3:30 p.m. PT. Polaroid execs who were wowed by her creations in Japan 6 months ago describe it as “the next generation instant experience.”
TV personalities, sports icons, award-winning actors and government officials are attending CES. Media receive a first look today with a 3-hour unveiling at The Venetian, plus VIP sessions tomorrow and then Thursday’s official opening of the show that runs through Sunday. Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer gives the keynote welcoming speech tomorrow.
R&B pop music performers Full Force will run a vocal talent search and performance session every day in the Gulpfish booth. 50 Cent will be at Sleek Audio in the South Hall Connector of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Soap opera heartthrob Aiden Turner will represent Ty, a smart cloud- and Bluetooth-e disc that attaches to personal possessions and prevents their loss. Gold medalist and world champion snowboarder Seth Wescott will provide insight about his road to becoming an Olympic champion and the role of technology in his career during a Sports and Fitness Tech Summit keynote address.
Eight-time Grammy-winning legends Earth, Wind & Fire will headline the annual Monster Retailer Awards and Concert to celebrate their 40th anniversary with a greatest-hits concert at the Paris on Friday. Lara Spencer of The Insider is hosting Adrian Grenier, Olivia Wilde, new CNN talk show anchor Piers Morgan and Common.
NBA legends Bill Walton and Rick Fox will be among the sports stars signing autographs. The family of Bob Marley will unveil its first collection of audio electronics products from The House of Marley. Artist David Garibaldi will display his famous skills in which he creates 6-foot paintings of pop icons matched to the rhythm of upbeat music in just minutes. Celebrity Chef Melissa D’Arabian, Season 5 winner of The Next Food Network Star, will be on hand to tell folks how to stretch $10 for a dinner for four.
Hollywood masterminds Tim Kring (creator of Heroes), Gale Anne Hurd (producer of the Terminator franchise) and Jeff Ross (executive producer of Conan on TBS) join Tom McGrath (director of Megamind) and Conrad Green (executive producer of Dancing With the Stars) for the Artists as Entrepreneurs sessions, which also feature Kevin Pollack and the producers of Lost.
Shellie Pfohl, executive director of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition, will be a keynote speaker for the Sports and Fitness Tech Summit. Larry King is attending, as is Survivor host Jeff Probst. The Huffington Post co-founder and Editor Arianna Huffington is a featured speaker at the Leaders in Technology Dinner at the Wynn.
Even though Vegas DeLuxe will report on all the stars while they work and play in Las Vegas, I note already that 2011 electronics is going to be all about a war of tablets, as rival Apple manufacturers try to play catch-up to the iPad. Interestingly, Apple doesn’t showcase at CES!
It’s going to be all about super-smart phones that will do anything you can do on a computer. There’s a lot of buzz about the gadgets that will end reliance on TV -- with expanded social networking -- just like a smart phone or iPad, plus all the new 3D TV screens and 3D laptops to watch without glasses.
We’ll be back tomorrow with a preview of the Adult Entertainment Expo and the AVN Awards, which attract 30,000 fans of XXX entertainment and porn princesses. But everybody I’ve spoken with says that it will be Lady Gaga who makes the biggest impression this week!
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Vegas DeLuxe on Twitter at Twitter.com/vegasdeluxe.
Follow VDLX Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.