By Max Clarke

Predictions about 2011 being “the year of the tablet” appear to be accurate, as the Consumer Electronics Show (CES)- opened today in the cavernous Las Vegas Convention Centre has seen the unveiling of dozens of the devices.

The CES- which has been held annually since its debut in 1967, has traditionally been the consumer’s first glimpse of the technology that will be gradually made available throughout the year. Previous technologies unveiled during the event have included Blu-Ray, Panasonic’s eye wateringly big 150” plasma TV, and an electricity free rollable display from Phillips. Though not open to the general public, the four day event is expected to attract some 140,000 visitors.

Asus began by introducing 4 tablet devices, while Blackberry’s playbook was also announced, operating on the lightning fast Sprint 4G network.

Sony Ericsson’s Arc smartphone, with high spec camera and a sleek, gently curving design, has captured the imagination of the planet, rocketing to the top of Google’s most searched list where it has remained all day.

Samsung have given the Apple cause for concern, with their new 13.3 series 9 notebook boasting 4Gb DDR3 ram, 128 Gb SSD storage and a brand new Intel® CoreTM i5 Processor in a sleek metal case rivalling- or even exceeding- the simple beauty of the Macbook.

Rumours, though as yet unsubstantiated, have also been circulating about the unveiling of Windows 8.