Demo Fall 2006 Products—the final View and Other Notes
Inexplicably, I’ve waited until now to write about a couple of the other products I really liked at Demo Fall 2006:
Moxia Energy’s USB Cell--. I can’t begin to count the number of times, I’ve had “AA” cells go south when I’m out somewhere really far away from a convenience store, super market or other place where I can buy replacement batteries. Yeah I know the Axiom, “Be Prepared”, but sometimes, like on a trip up to the Donner Family Cabin site in the middle of the Sierra wilderness north of highway 80, you just run out of battery power and absolutely have to take that final digital image. And this is where Moxia Energy’s USB Cell technology comes in very handy/. Now that battery life is up around four to five hours, I often have volts to spare, so the idea of rechargeable batteries that get their power through my USB ports is something that not only comes in handy, but it also makes a lot of sense. I was one of the lucky few people who came home from Demo with a pair of these rechargeable batteries. Right now, I’ve got them plugged into the USB ports on my Think Pad X60s (which is connected back to the Internet mother ship through a Verizon, EvDo wireless broad band connection as I write early in the morning—around 4 a.m.—in a casino floor bar at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Casino. In about 30 minutes I’m going out in the desert for a sunrise walk through a burro and wild horse sanctuary. If I’m really lucky, I’ll be able to grab a shot or two of a desert wild burro foal. I’ll have two charged bstteries in my camera so I’m keeping my fingers crossed and my camera’s lense uncovered.. Having used USBCell, I’ve already come to rely on this technology and it’s a sure fire bet that these two innocuous little batteries now have a permanent place in my “go now” bag, which travels with me every where I travel. I like Moxia Energy’s USBcell an have absolutely no qualms in recommending it to anyone who has a need for charged AA batteries when it’s inconvenient or impossible to get to a store. Jim says grab your credit card out and order these pups now. The AA rechargeable batteries are just merely the first product from this engineering driven company. It’s probably a very safe bet that their eyes are on a much larger market—USB rechargeable batteries and power packs for cell phones. Hey, I can go for that, like in a flat second.
Head Play Personal Cinema System—Wow, what a concept, an IDEO designed headset with an initial resolution of 800x 600 pixels. This pup comes with a set of ear buds that have great audio fidelity and an instinctive control system I really like.
HeadPlay won’t ship until early in 2007, I have an idea you’ll see this system featured in in-flight magazines, catalogs and at electronics stores. When I saw HeadPlay I thought, “far out, man, personal theater!”
Personal Theaters as a concept is something I worked very hard to bring to Demo the last year I worked the show. What really got my attention was a system I wanted to highlight as a “works in progress from a well known consumer company that had launched products at Demo several years before. Located far away rfom Silicon Valley
This system still has not been released, although I’ve heard through the grapevine that a couple of aero-defense suppliers and at least two major entertainment companies have gotten their heads under the big yellow tent for enticing glimpses. I hope it shows up at Demo someday and I’m counting on Chris Shipley to maintain contact with this company to get it at the show soon.
(Note to Chris, you can stop in and see this on your next trip home. It’s near where you were raised and is from the same company that invited you to a seminar in New Mexico
Until this system arrives, I’m content with HeadPlay, which is a great first offering and a solid sample of things to come.
Heart an Soul of Demo Activities: VCs and their friends.
I had several friends at Demo who were waiting for “the word” from VC attendees. Perhaps more than anything else, what I loved most about Demo were behind the scenes dances between entrepreneurs and their partners. Although one of my oldest friends didn’t get a signed term sheet at the show, I did notice attendees from HPQ and Intel deep in discussions with one a self-funded company I think has a real shot at success. I promised I wouldn’t reveal the name of this company until they were ready to announce, So for now my lips are sealed.
One of the things I saw at Demo Fall 2006 that really caught my attention were non-traditional venture backer attendees., They were looking hard for content and internet technologies to enhance their primary brands. The one clue I’ll offer is that I counted two sports championship rings on two attendee hands and both people were deep into Demonstrator’s business plans at tables, shore-side over by San Diego Bay
Ahh, new money and sharp investors looking for technology to help their brands, I really love Demo.
Thsat’s it for now, I’m off to a nearby wild burro and horse wilderness area in Nevada with a set of recharged batteries in my camera, comfortable shoes and the expectation I’ll see new more products this winter at Demo in Palm Springs.—Jim Forbes on 10/20/2006 from Las Vegas..