Despite having announced that he will begin to step back
from his leading role at Microsoft, chairman and co-founder Bill Gates has confirmed that he will deliver a keynote speech at the 2007 CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas next January.
Although no details of the content of his speech have been given, Gates has repeatedly used CES to announce new games related products, including the HD-DVD drive for the Xbox 360. However, despite the keynote speech coming directly after the first Christmas period in which the Xbox 360 will have faced next generation competition from the PlayStation 3 and Wii, the majority of his speech is not expected to be Xbox 360 related.
Instead, Gates is expected to address the frequently delayed launch of the Windows Vista operating system, which Gates recently confirmed had an 80 percent chance of launching in January. According to a presentation given in South Africa and reported on by website Media Watch, Gates said: “We’ve got to get this absolutely right. If the feedback from the beta tests shows it is not ready for prime time, I'd be glad to delay it."
It is also speculated that Gates will discuss the Project Argo series of portable devices, of which further rumors emerged yesterday
. Indeed, CES may be used to demonstrate one or more of the devices for the first time – although the Seattle Times has suggested that at least one of the apparently Xbox-branded machines will be shown this year.
The other two keynote speeches scheduled for CES are by Ed Zander, chairman of the board and CEO of Motorola and Robert Iger, president and CEO of The Walt Disney Company.
CEA (Consumer Electronics Association) president and CEO Gary Shapiro commented of the announcement: "These three industry visionaries will present their views of where the industry - particularly digital content and entertainment - is heading from their unique positions as heads of some of the world's most influential companies."