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Day 6 - IFA International

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Region SPOTLIGHT ON

Region SPOTLIGHT ON JAPAN Japanese Innovation Helps Industry Bounce Back The connected future is an opportunity for Japanese style and ingenuity The problems facing Japan’s economy make regular headlines in the world’s business press. But one thing that hasn’t changed is the country’s reputation for stylish and innovative technology. This explains why the land of the rising sun exported around bn worth of electrical equipment in 2015. Add in related sectors like medical and technical equipment and the figure was nearer 6 bn. Japan’s unique status in the world of consumer electronics and home appliances has been evident at IFA 2016 this week, where industry leaders like Panasonic and Sony continue to attract a lot of attention. But there is strength in depth in Japan, with the likes of Toshiba, Sharp, Epson and Yamaha also helping transform futuristic concepts into commercial products with global appeal. Behind the strapline A Better Life, A Better World, the Panasonic booth features an array of product innovations from audio-visual equipment to home and beauty appliances. A big emphasis this year has been on smart-home technologies that improve people’s quality of life – a clue to how Japan can compete. Examples include glass break sensors, perimeter cameras, water-leak sensors and motion sensors that can even detect if someone is not moving as much as they should. A cloudconnected home controller is designed to control all home appliances, including lighting. Panasonic’s confidence in the future was echoed by Kazuo Hirai, president and CEO of Sony Corporation, who told IFA delegates that they were looking at “a stronger Sony” thanks to a revival in the company’s consumer electronics businesses. Operating income for the fiscal year ending March 2016 was approximately .55 bn, almost five times that of the previous year. Japan’s ability to compete at the leading edge of technological change was evident in several ways at IFA. Epson, best known to most consumers for its printers and projectors, is at IFA with the latest incarnation of it augmented reality Smart Glasses while Toyota is present with its awardwinning range of sewing machines, the quintessence of Japanese product design. Yamaha, adopting a similar philosophy to Panasonic and Sony, is at IFA with MusicCast, a wireless music system that enables users to stream music all over the house through a simple app with a quick setup. Toshiba’s response to the rapidly-changing market has been to make itself an indispensable part of the structure of future living. At IFA, its Toshiba Europe Storage Peripherals Division previewed a new product for backing-up and charging Android phones. Japan is also at the forefront of advances in robotics, in part because of its rapidly aging population. With strong support from the Japanese government, its robotics market is predicted to hit bn in sales by 2025 SELECTED JAPANESE EXHIBITORS AT IFA 2016 E AND A SERIES REFRIGERATORS DELIVER FRESHNESS With Panasonic, consumers can eat their way to a healthy lifestyle with the NN- DS596 microwave oven, the SD-ZB2512 bread maker, the MJ-L500 slow juicer, the MX-ZX100 high-power blender and the MK- F800 food processor. Panasonic’s new E and A series refrigerators also promote freshness. The technology featured creates the optimal environment for storing vegetables, including a partial freezing temperature control (−3°C) and storage technology, which keeps meat and fish fresh for an extended period of time. Hall 5.2 / Stand 101 SHARP 8460 SERIES ULTRA HD 4K SMART D-LED TV A revitalised Sharp has made a triumphant return to the TV market with an array of exciting new HD and 4K Sharp TVs. An example is the 8460 series ULTRA HD 4K Smart D-LED TV, which boasts exceptional picture quality. The 8460 series also provides various connection possibilities. Three HDMI 2.0 ports are able to receive 2160@60Hz signal, a USB 3.0 port is perfect for connecting a fast hard disc drive (in addition to two USB 2.0 ports) and MHL technology can charge a mobile device simultaneously with multimedia playback on the Ultra HD TV. Hall 11.2 / Stand 105 20

© Thomas Keller HOSPITALITY / RESTAURANTS / BARS WHERE TO GO IN Berlin CLUBS / EVENTS / SHOPPING / CULTURE Berlin After Dark Exploring the night in the city that never sleeps Berlin is a 24-hour city renowned for its diverse, and sometimes wild, nightlife, an endless panorama of bars, clubs and late night cafes and restaurants. According to Stuart Braun, a Berlin-based Australian writer and journalist whose book City of Exiles describes Berlin’s special allure for foreign artists like David Bowie, the city really switches on after dark. He begins by describing how Berlin’s nightlife has migrated east since west-end neighbourhoods thrived with clubs and cabarets. Stuart Braun Writer and journalist In the 1920s, Weimar-era Berlin was called the Babylon on the Spree due to its notorious nightlife, a scene immortalised in the film Cabaret starring Liza Minnelli. The city’s decadent clubs and bars were then centred in the upmarket boulevards of Schöneberg and Charlottenburg in the west, but today the upcoming districts of Mitte, Kreuzberg and Neukölln are where you’ll find streets buzzing long into the wee hours. In Neukölln, for instance, relatively cheap rents have attracted young and restless creatives from around the world, sparking a thriving bar, restaurant and gallery scene focused around Weserstrasse. What are some of your favourite bars in this area? Ankerklause is a unique Kreuzberg kneipe (bar) located on the bridge that spans the Landwehr Canal. Marinethemed, with faux fish tanks and a terrace that edges across the water, this late-night Berlin staple caters to a diverse crowd who also like to dance around the 60s juke box. On the other side of the bridge, Das Hotel is compact with lush atmospherics—from the lavish bouquets that fill out every candle lit recess, to the piano, which is often being played, and high, muslin-draped ceiling. The young artists who typically staff the bar typically speak German, English, French and Spanish, and dispense a fine, heady Hefeweizen (wheat beer) while DJs get people hopping on the creaking wood floors. Any other tips? If you can first make it for dinner at Max und Moritz on Oranienstrasse in Kreuzberg, a gemütlich, or cosy, wood-lined tavern established in 1902 that serves local specialties including salty pickled pork foot and seasoned meatballs (vegetarian options also available), head after for a digestif among a row of lively, sophisticated bars on nearby Dresdener Strasse. At Würgeengel, the Bauhaus-esque décor is matched by sharply dressed waiters who serve top-shelf cocktails that fuel animated conversation late into the morning. www.ifa-international.org IFA International • Wednesday 7 th September 2016 21

IFA International