Berlin, Germany

Welcome to my blog covering the second dedicated media day of the 2013 IFA conference in Berlin. Yesterday was epic: starting at 9am local time with Siemens’ plans for the connected home and ending 12 hours later across town at the Temprodrom, where Samsung unveiled the long-awaited Galaxy Gear.

My colleague Claire attended a simultaneous Sydney launch for Panasonic’s new Ultra HD TV range and she has written up that story with the local angle. Good to see Panasonic joining that party – I was surprised back at CES in January when Pana didn’t appear to have Ultra HD on its 2013 product road map.

Samsung’s presser was so popular that a crowd of at least 200 watched the show on screens set up outside the hall. There wasn’t anything particularly groundbreaking announced, though Samsung did confirm the FoodShowcase refrigerator and displayed a prototype Ultra HD OLED TV.

GfK has released some information on how the global consumer electronics and appliance markets are travelling – the most interesting finding is that although smartphones have decimated the entry level digital camera market, they are introducing more and more people to photography, leading many to invest in higher-priced models.

One interesting story I heard during the day concerned bidding for marketing budgets. At one company, marketing managers from all over the world are preseting to win a share from a pool of marketing budgets – there are six bidders and only three will get budget, based on the strength of the presentation.

“If Australia wins, the bar will be going off tonight,” was how it was put to me.

Free espresso in the media centre today is being provided by Jura!