Unless you've been Lost or stuck in a Prison Break, the world's leading fair for the consumer electronics sector, and now an annual event from 2006, the IFA (Internationale Funkausstellung) Consumer Electronics Unlimited is currently underway. Occupying 160,000 square-meters of hall space and numerous outdoor sites, the IFA 2006 show has featured displays by 1,049 exhibitors from more than 32 countries (and that's really a lot of space to cover).
The event proper is held from 1st to 6th September with sprawling booth exhibits and themed halls by major players in the CE industry. Interspersed with all these are must-go press conferences by the who's who of the industry where new products are announced, key trends are shown and industry insights are shared. Almost all the major groups of companies in the CE sector are represented at the event, including AMD, ATI, JVC, O2, Sony Ericsson, Toshiba, Acer, Grundig, MSI, LG Electronics, Loewe, Philips, Samsung, Sharp and the list goes on.
Having touched down in Berlin on August 31st (with a harrowing security-tight custom clearance in-transit via London), we managed to catch several private press-only conferences held a day before the actual IFA kick-start. Known as the IFA Press Day conferences, we managed to attend a few on the latter half of the day, including one organized by the Blu-ray Disc Association and Panasonic Europe.
Today (September 1st - IFA Day 1), before we check out what's on the ground floor for some of the players, we also cover a little on the Opening Keynote by Mr. Gee Sung Choi, Samsung President and CEO, Digital Media Business and Chief Design Officer, Corporate Design Center. Check out highlights of his speech at the end of this article, including an update to his Digital Renaissance keynote address first delivered at the 2003 IFA.