Every year, Google takes over the Moscone Center in San Francisco (a convenient train ride away from me) and hosts a full-blown conference called Google I/O. The usual schedule consists of 2 opening keynotes followed by presentations and demos related to all kinds of Google technologies. Google I/O also gives you an excellent chance to mingle with developers from all over the world, network, and exchange contact information. My favorite part is something called Fireside Chats, where developers from a specific team in Google sit around, talk about their product, and answer questions.
As a loyal Sprint customer, I must say - I was disappointed by the carrier's lack of announcements at CES. In fact, the only new phone they introduced was the HTC EVO Shift 4G, which offered little that we haven't already seen in a million other phones. But as it turns out, the nation's third-largest carrier isn't resting on its laurels; it was merely saving the more important announcements for its own event.