Computex 2017 is set to push the PC envelope – CNET

Computex

Computex is kicking off once again in Taipei, Taiwan, and CNET is on the ground, braving the humidity, ready to bring you all the big news.

Unlike CES in Las Vegas, which catches the whole tech industry in its massive net, or next month’s E3, which zeroes in on gaming for three days in LA, Computex is all about PCs and peripherals.

That means the show sees big announcements and shiny new gadgets from the likes of Asus, Intel, Acer, Dell, Gigabyte, Nvidia and plenty more, as well as the odd surprise from lesser-known names.

And the world will be watching this week. With the conventional PC market lagging, the world’s big brands need to get you spending and they’ll be turning to the enthusiast market and high-end applications to generate buzz.

On that front, you can expect to see more VR this year as the technology moves toward the mainstream, with more manufacturers playing in the VR space and price points dropping.

Taiwan local HTC doesn’t have a formal presence at the show, but that doesn’t mean we won’t see its Vive VR tech on the show floor alongside plenty of other VR demos. Many brands will want to show off the grunt of their gaming rigs and VR will be the perfect way to do it.

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One of CNET’s picks for best VR experience at Computex 2016 was “Birdly” on the HTC Vive.

Seamus Byrne/CNET

But it won’t just be about VR. Augmented Reality is also likely to get plenty of airtime, as a technology that lends itself to a wide variety of applications and businesses (don’t forget, Computex is a big show for the business industry as well).

Last year, Microsoft announced it was opening its Hololens AR platform, Windows Holographic, to third-party companies to help kick off the next stage of the AR revolution. This year we should see some of the fruits of this as more brands wind their way into “mixed reality.”

Artificial Intelligence is also set to be a big topic for this year’s show, with Nvidia holding a full-day AI forum to talk about the future of healthcare, driverless cars and machine learning.

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Last year, Asus gave us the adorable Zenbo robot.

Claire Reilly/CNET

And while we’re talking about machine learning, it’s worth admitting that we really have our fingers crossed for more robots. Last year, Asus surprised Computex visitors with the unveiling of its adorable robot Zenbo. Sure, it’s been one year since then and, like many other robotic visions of the future, Zenbo is yet to materialise. But still, how could we say no to more robots on the show floor?

On that front, away from all the launches and revelations, the biggest show in Taipei is sure to deliver some oddball delights.

Last year gave us VR backpacks, some awesome and truly strange VR experiences and plenty of hectic overclocking demos and kickass case mods. This year, we’re ready to be wowed again.

CNET will be on the ground in Taipei covering the news as it happens, so you can stay in touch with everything from Computex 2017 right here.

What you can’t miss from CES 2017: Not in Vegas? CNET shows you all the stuff you’ve just gotta see.

All the cool new gadgets from CES 2017: The stuff that impressed us most at this year’s show.

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