Being part of the mediapack at an event such as IFA is not for the fainthearted. Appliance Retailer’s Simon King kept up as the global giants rolled out crates of desirable products and technology to keep retailers busy well into 2016. His first stop was the Sony conference which he described as one of the most popular of the Fair.
Sony launched its new flagship smartphone, the 5.2in Xperia Z5, along with a 4.6in Xperia Z5 Compact at IFA. The Xperia Z5 Premium will feature the world’s first 4K UHD smartphone display.
Sony’s latest digital imaging offerings include the RX100 IV and RX10 II, two additions to Sony’s Cyber-shot digital still camera range that bring once professional-only features to ordinary users.
Sony showcased the range of 4K BRAVIA TVs, including the 65in/55in X90C series, described as the slimmest LCD TVs in the world, measuring approximately 4.9mm at their thinnest point. Sony said it is working with streaming video providers such as Amazon Video to bring customers movies and TV shows in HDR (High Dynamic Range), a premium technology which generates deeper blacks, brighter peaks, and richer color tones.
Sony also unveiled a range of headphones called h.ear (pronounced “hear”) and new Walkman models, the NW-A25HN and the NW-ZX100HN. The h.ear series features both over-the-head style and in-ear style headphones.
Samsung Electronics demonstrated how it is taking the Internet of Things (IoT) from vision to reality at IFA, where the company showcased a range of new connected devices and IoT services.
Dr W.P. Hong, chief marketing officer at Samsung, said, “For Samsung, IFA 2015 is all about the Internet of Things. We are certain that IoT will revolutionise the world of consumer electronics, and this is our opportunity to update you on how far we have come in just a year.
“No organisation is better placed to ensure that the latest industrial revolution is driven not by technology, but by people’s expectations. Our vision is of an IoT that’s ‘In Sync With Life’, that’s an IoT for you.”
Under the theme of ‘A Better Life, A Better World’ Panasonic’s lifestyle showcased a wide range of products, from AV equipment to home appliances and beauty appliances, featured in living environments.
Centering around the Personal Kitchen Screen, demonstrations showed how connected home appliances can enrich eating lifestyle with cloud-based services, such as recommending recipes that match the family’s eating habits.
Panasonic Appliances Company, president Tetsuro Homma, previewed the latest line-up of the company’s 4K VIERA TVs, including the new TX-65CZ950, which features a 65in OLED screen.
Homma said, “The CZ950 delivers the ultimate, high picture quality with high contrast and rich color expression, faithfully reproducing the director’s vision.”
A development prototype of a waterproof, portable 24in TV was also on display. It uses wireless transmissions from tuners to allow users to enjoy TV broadcasts or recorded programs in rooms without antennas.
Also unveiled at IFA was Panasonic Nubo, the world’s first mobile monitoring camera that makes monitoring possible in places without Wi-Fi connectivity.
German manufacturer Miele launched its ‘Inspired by Life’ tagline at IFA, backed by a number of key product innovations. These included TempControl induction hobs, which ensures the correct temperature is maintained at all times by sensors embedded in the ceramic screen. TempControl works together with all pots and pans suitable for induction.
Miele also presented the world’s first networked dispensing system for washing machines. When detergent is almost used up, the machine automatically sends a message to a mobile device. Also on show in Berlin was a similar pilot project for dishwashers.
Another key highlight was the launch of sous-vide cooking. Miele co-proprietor and executive director Dr Markus Miele said that with a new built-in vacuum-sealing drawer and a steam oven from Miele, “consumers now have access to the full range of applications in the convenience of their own home”.
Bosch said it aimed to bring the Bosch brand and the benefits of the appliance range closer to visitors through “an emotional and immersive trade fair appearance”.
Key new products from Bosch included the Series 8 induction hobs, which are equipped with the PerfectFry frying sensor and the PerfectCook cooking sensor.
Also launched at IFA from Bosch was a new ActiveOxygen function on washing machines, which hygienically clean laundry at gentle, low washing temperatures.
A new generation of large NoFrost fridge-freezers was also launched – some combinations feature the advanced freshness system VitaFresh pro.
Bosch also spoke of the new possibilities for networked home appliances offered by Home Connect, the app that can be used on a smartphone or tablet PC to not only operate appliances remotely, but also to check whether there are tomatoes in the fridge while in the fruit and veg aisle at Aldi.