By James Wells
MELBOURNE:Four electrical products from Sunbeam, Breville, Philips Electronics and Rode Microphones won all of the prestigious Australian Design Awards in the consumer category at a ceremony held at the National Gallery of Victoria on Friday night.
Sunbeam and Breville continued their rivalry in the event with both brands receiving three nominations for Design Awards, however the competition ended in a draw for the two Sydney-based design teams with each brand winning one top award each while two products were relegated to the event’s second-tier – the DesignMark.
Sunbeam won its Australian Design Award for the KE9300 Ceramic Series Kettle, while Sunbeam’s EM0450 Conical Burr Coffee Grinder and the SR6900 Accura Digital Resilium Iron both received DesignMarks for being named as finalists – the second highest tier at the event.
Breville won its Australian Design Award for the BES400 iKon Espresso Machine, while Breville’s BJE510 iKon Juice Extractor and BBL600 iKon Blender both won DesignMarks.
Philips won an Australian Design Award for its Digital Photo Frame, while Rode Microphones won an Australian Design Award for the Rode Podcaster – the world’s first broadcast sound quality USB output microphone with zero latency headphone monitoring.
Entries were assessed by a panel of design judges from companies including Samsung, Braun and Electrolux using a common set of criteria including innovation, visual appeal, functionality, originality, quality, ergonomics, safety, sustainability and commercial viability.
The winner of the Australian Design Award of the Year from 90 shortlisted entries was the Gator – a high-powered LED bike headlamp that was described as “visually simple, compact and obnoxiously bright”.
This is the last year that the awards will be presented in their current format. In 2008, the Australian Design Awards will undergo a major transformation to cater for all products sold on the Australian market, regardless of where they were designed.
“This is an important change to the way we have been operating for the past 50 years and it recognizes that design is now well and truly a global activity,” said Australian Design Awards manager, Stephanie Watson.