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Review Edition - IFA International

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Matt Candy Vice

Matt Candy Vice President & European Leader, IBM iX Dr Stefan Wrobel professor of computer science at the University of Bonn and director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information Yao Zhang Founder and CEO, RoboTerra The IFA+ Summit Outlines the Connected Future Global thinkers and innovators come together for IFA’s annual festival of ideas Featuring some of the world’s leading thinkers, visionaries and game-changers, the 2016 IFA+ Summit offered insights into the ‘connected future’ of hightech, product development and state-of- the-art design. The latest technological and scientific advancements, in addition to business model breakthroughs, were presented in the context of changing consumer and media behaviours. Highlights from the Summit included a September 6 session on “Understanding Design: The Next Level of Integration”. Does design matter more than ever? Is happiness by design? In his talk on “Design as the Catalyst for Reinvention”, Matt Candy, Vice President & European Leader, IBM iX, described how the next generation services organisation has been driving the revolution that is reshaping future customer experiences, business models and value propositions. Candy oversees a multi-disciplinary team across Europe who collaborate using the best design, strategy, architecture, technology, cognitive and wearables practices to generate transformational ideas. Yao Zhang, founder and CEO, RoboTerra, addressed questions about design during her talk, “A Place For People and Machines – Race with Robots, Not Against Them”. Chosen as a 2016 Young Global Leader by the Davos World Economic Forum, Zhang has been working in the education and technology field for more than a decade. She described how RoboTerra provides a cloud-based learning solution that connects educational robots built by students and respective course modules, thus allowing students a rewarding and fun learning experience. The IFA+ Summit session on “Mixed Reality: the next level of experience and entertainment” asked what the linking of real and virtual worlds mean for our perception of reality. What technological means will the entertainment industry use to reach its audience? What copyright strategies will be pursued? George Bloom, executive producer at CBS Digital, was at the Summit to describe the future of virtual reality. “The new VR hardware entering the marketplace is best optimised if creators look beyond spherical imaging and explore creating content in 3D space,” he said. “We also need to re-imagine how we tell stories. A whole new language needs to evolve before we are able to step into the next dimension of the story world. We need to challenge our current mental models.” A September 6 IFA+ Summit session on Intelligent Data focused on the role, responsibilities, and potential of big data. To whom does your data belong? Will big data govern society in the future or will society govern big data? What ethical, moral and practical architecture is in place for big data to build upon? What is the balance of benefit and sacrifice in big data to a society? Dr Stefan Wrobel, professor of computer science at the University of Bonn and director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information, told the Summit that “Big Data is at the heart of the business models of some of the most successful players in the media industry.” Wrobel went on to describe the current capability of artificial intelligence technologies, and some concrete practical applications. “Luckily, recent advances in machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms, growing computing power, and the increasing availability of big data, are now enabling intelligent software systems that can analyse and interpret media data as well as never before in history,” he said. “Computers can now play information-based games, they can identify objects in complex scenes, they can even modify images or automatically generate captions for them. Thus, it is now time to start evaluating these technologies and to bring them into productive use in a company’s value chain” 16

TRADE TALK Gome Holdings Group operates in retail, real estate, and investment businesses. It operates a chain of home appliance stores in China, and sells home appliances online. The company was founded in 2011 and is based in Beijing, China. Gome’s Winkin Liao told IFA International how Chinese consumers growing interest in foreign brands has affected the market at home How has the Chinese market of consumer electronics been affected as Chinese consumers become increasingly interested in foreign brands? As overseas products enter the daily life of Chinese consumers we are adapting our product structure and service categories to the changing, diverse consumption needs. Consumers of different kinds have diverse needs for electronic products and many electronic products are imported from overseas to meet those needs. Gome is China's biggest retailer and it's our responsibility to serve as a bridge between domestic consumers and foreign suppliers and introduce high-quality foreign products to our consumers to improve their livelihood. This is part of our social responsibility. One of our aims at IFA 2016 was to find the right products to introduce to our consumers back home. ONE OF OUR AIMS AT IFA 2016 WAS TO FIND THE RIGHT PRODUCTS TO INTRODUCE TO OUR CONSUMERS BACK HOME. And you now have a partnership with IFA… Yes, at the beginning of 2015, Gome Holdings Group reached a strategic agreement with IFA to become its strategic partner in Asia. At CE China, IFA’s Chinese event in Shenzhen in April – where we had a booth to display our products – our delegation took the chance to meet with IFA executives to discuss future co-operation. As IFA's Asian strategic partner, we hope to strengthen communication with international home appliance suppliers and build the international image of our brand via this international trade show. We are at a critical period of transformation. Now many suppliers have incorporated Internet-enabled home appliances for smart homes and so have evolved from hardware producers to solutions providers. Our retail strategy is moving in this direction too, fueling our determination to upgrade our business and betterserve our consumers. How do you spot new ideas, establish connections and develop partnerships at the trade show? At the trade show, we saw that many Chinese and foreign suppliers have extended their business from hardware production to R&D in the field of intelligent home appliances and the smart home. We are taking this opportunity to learn from them in moving from a traditional sector to an emerging one. We will deliver services before, during and after sales including intelligent home appliances and smart-home services based on the products and services provided by suppliers. We will also actively introduce advanced products and services we see to domestic consumers. At IFA 2016, we've seen and talked with many Chinese and foreign suppliers and I believe that the most cutting-edge smart-home appliances will reach Chinese consumers pretty soon. What do you find to be the most interesting at the trade show? I find it very interesting to demonstrate product functions by presenting usage scenarios or by employing smart technologies on the spot. In addition to product experience, it enables consumers to envision the changes and improvement these products Gome Moves Into the Connected World will bring to their future lifestyle. We look forward to introducing the usage scenarios of intelligent home appliances presented at IFA to domestic consumers to improve their lives. Messe Berlin, the organiser of IFA, has been striving to enhance Europe-China relations by hosting events such as CE China. What do you think of its efforts? IFA is the world's best-known home-appliance and consumerelectronics trade show. But Chinese consumers also want a highprofile exhibition that represents the future developments at home. That's why CE China is an all-win move. First, it introduces overseas advanced smart-home appliances to Chinese consumers; second, it allows Chinese consumers to experience the future first-hand; and third, it shortens the time consumers need to respond to the latest products and allows Chinese retailers including Gome to directly communicate with overseas suppliers and introduce foreign products to China as soon as possible. For the organisers, they can truly bring advanced foreign products to Chinese consumers and allow exhibitors to get closer to the Chinese market Winkin Liao Spokesperson, Gome Holdings Group www.ifa-international.org IFA International • Friday 16 th September 2016 17

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