IFA 2014: now the dust has settled

Samsung stand at the IFA 2014 - Upright UK LtdSeptember saw us visit the IFA 2014 show in Berlin (one of the finest capital cities in Europe). It was a fantastic show, full of highlights and intriguing technological advancements.

The IFA is a global trade show based around home appliances and consumer electronics, which presents the latest products and innovations in what it calls “the heart of Europe‘s most important regional market”. This annual consumer electronics fair is now in its 90th year and attracts around 1,200+ exhibitors from 32 countries. So what was the main buzz at the show …

3D is dead: long live the Curved TV

A common theme that echoed throughout was that 3D TV is dead, with many manufacturers reducing their 3D TV range and some abandoning it entirely. The next big advancement will come in the form of immersive viewing through Curved TV. With the likes of Samsung and LG revealing Curved TV ranges at the start of the year, it was no surprise to see them featuring prominently at the show. OLED 4K is very much the way manufacturers are going, offering a much-improved viewer interface.

Global technology manufacturing

Korea now leads as the superpower in consumer electronic manufacturing. Japan is a close second and is commonly thought of as the superpower in this field; however, new players like China are now nibbling at Japan’s heels too.

Mobiles and PCs

Claims of the demise of the desktop PC are premature. Projections from the show indicate that whilst the rise of tablet computers, smartphones and other mobile devices are growing, early adoption in the business sector does not support these claims. The need for long-term file storage and familiarity still holds weight.

The consumer electronics giant Apple is still avoiding being benchmarked by not attending or exhibiting. However, Samsung’s Galaxy Gear Smart Watch is an impressive piece of technology. It created quite a buzz at the show, and it is believed that it will be difficult for Apple’s own offering to beat it.

Consumer electronics will save the planet

Throughout IFA 2014 the big push was about ‘greenwashing’ messages boasting energy savings and efficiencies on a huge variety of products. Whilst many a naysayer will profess that this isn’t as good as fully green design (environmentally friendly throughout the lifecycle of the product), it’s a darn good way to go, and certainly a solid direction for the market to take.

In conclusion

These are very exciting times for the consumer electronics and home appliances industry and it’s looking buoyant in many established markets, whilst emerging markets like India & China are going to show promising growth over the coming years. The IFA was a really fascinating show that hosted many interesting companies in a great capital city. One final thought … Berliners definitely know how to party.

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