It's not exactly a huge shock but today the Consumer Electronics Association trade group confirmed that the 2012 edition of the Consumer Electronic Show will have its first keynote address from Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer. According to News.com, the head of Microsoft will give his keynote speech on Monday, January 9th, at the Venetian hotel in Las Vegas. The keynote happens the day before CES 2012 officially opens its exhibit doors at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The show itself will run from January 10-13.
It's become a tradition for the head of Microsoft to officially kick off CES with the first keynote address although a number of other companies also hold separate press conferences before the Microsoft keynote. Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates led the keynotes at CES until 2009 when he passed the company's day-to-day duties to Ballmer who has been taking on the keynote duties ever since.
During his keynote at CES 2011, Ballmer announced a number of things including support for future versions of its Windows operating system running under the ARM processor design. He also announced the addition of Avatar Kinect for the Xbox 360 console, demoed features for Windows Phone 7 and more. While many felt that the keynote was less than spectacular, that might not be the case for CES 2012. Many suspect that Ballmer will be showing off a lot more of Windows 8, the next version of its operating system that could be released later in 2012.