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Week-end Edition - Day 2 & Day 3 - IFA International

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Exclusive Interview

Exclusive Interview Shiro Nishiguchi Shiro Nishiguchi joined the company in 1980. He worked in the International Department and in 2003 became Director of the fast growing LCD TV business unit. Since January 2012, Nishiguchi-san has been appointed Executive Officer & Director, AVC Marketing Division at Panasonic. Smart VIERA grows Panasonic improved the popular VIERA Remote App and brings videociety and the App World Heritage Special new content to the TV. The new online video store videociety will provide a huge range of films in HD quality and in some cases even in 3D for viewing. Panasonic will also be working with the National Geographic Channel documentary on the UNESCO World Heritage List to create a special app in VIERA Connect Market to bring their breathtaking footage of the most culturally significant places in the world. And the new VIERA Remote App for mobile devices of multimedia data exchange succeed faster and easier than ever. Finding the Sweet Spot Panasonic finds strength in its five product design pillars The TV market continues to be highly competitive, with Chinese manufacturers becoming bolder, the Koreans very proactive and the Yen rising. Shiro Nishiguchi, Executive Officer & Director, AVC Marketing Division at Panasonic, tells IFA International how the company is fighting back… [ Interview by Richard Barnes ] TVs have, like white goods, become indispensable to everybody’s home life. Within our five product design ‘pillars’, namely Picture Quality, Easy Operation, Networking, Eco and Design, we are always listening to the voice of the consumer and responding by providing products which match their needs in each region or country. As a result, through focusing on customer needs, we believe we can win the global competition. And in fact, our latest re-designed flat TV models have been very well received. We all know that big trends include smart TV and 3D, but what are the most important groundswell trends for you? In 2012, we have improved our products by further evolving the five ‘pillars’ that I mentioned and by promoting the new range as Smart Vieras. Our perennial strength is our hardware (Panel and System LSI) and software such as the Middleware, which is becoming a core technology for IPTV. The functions, services and solutions we are providing differentiate us and open the door to a brand new experience when watching and using our TVs. Panasonic was, indeed, one of the first to push 3D TV ... firstly with active shutter glasses, and now also with some models including FPR technology. How do you see the future of 3D? In 2010, we introduced the first 3D TVs before our competitors. We believed that in the near future all living room TVs would be 3D TVs, and, currently, it is becoming true. The introduction of low-cost FPR was to done in order to be able to handle the wide demand for 3D TV. Thanks to the penetration of 3D Digital Still Cameras and Camcorders, on top of the 3D BD software, usercreated 3D content is also increasing. This leaves us with the expectation that there will still be growth in the future. Furthermore thanks to the evolution of our technology, our 2012 models (both PDPs and LCDs) provide high picture quality in both 2D and 3D – as confirmed by the excellent reviews we have had in major AV magazines. How important is IFA as a platform to promote your innovations to the global market? We consider IFA to be an important exhibition, one that is closely observed not only by European customers but also globally. Therefore, especially for promoting advanced technologies, we consider it to be unmissable. Accordingly this year we have a corner devoted to displaying our latest hightech display products and we hope that visitors will see the potential of these technologies. Panasonic introduced the world’s first 3D Theater System for the home and we “TVs have, like white goods, become indispensable to everybody’s home life. ” Hall 5.2 Shiro Nishiguchi Executive Officer & Director, Panasonic have now just completed the world’s first 3D broadcast of the Olympic games, so we consider that we are always a leader in the industry. In the past here at IFA we have displayed new 3D solutions, namely an Interactive 3D System and also the world’s largest 103 inch glassless 3D panel display for B2B use. We shall continue to lead with such value added products. In addition, we are also displaying 145” PDP with 16 times more resolution than a Full HD display that is capable of working with the for the next generation broadcasting service Super High Vision (SHV). We also have on display the world’s smallest 20” 4K2K LCD Panel. Stand 101 22

» Unveiled! TELEVISION AUDIO BLU-RAY HOME CINEMA WELL-BEING LIVING ROOMACCESSORIES lifestyle The Ultimate in Digital Comfort Emotions, entertainment and relaxation in the heart of your home – under the spotlight at IFA 2012 Smart TV and 3D On the Rise IFA is all about making lifestyles easier, more convenient, more efficient and compelling. In this edition of IFA International, we take a close-up look at Living Room Lifestyle: all the elements that come together to make life better in the living room. Of course, the main elements include the TV and the sound system, but also such things as massage chairs, which are becoming more commonplace in homes. Content, and the way we watch it, are key drivers of the uptake of new TVs. 3D is slowly but surely gaining ground, and the dream of glasses-free 3D is now reality – with several brands coming to market with solutions, including Toshiba and Panasonic. Smart TV is now no longer an added feature, but a “must have” in virtually all new sets. The evolution of the TV Three main trends are emerging in 2012: • Bigger screen sizes: up to 90-inch in the case of Sharp’s new set; • Higher resolution: 4K TV is arriving (4,000 x 2,000 pixels); • OLED: Organic-based technology, which is finally hitting the market, meaning stunning colours and contrast, and ultrathin screens. Which devices are most popular? According to GfK, the trend is still towards larger sizes and better features. In the first six months, demand for Smart TVs was particularly high, with sales increasing by 31 percent to 4.13 million. The same applies to 3D televisions, which now make up more than 39 percent of all sales. For 2012 as a whole, GfK is predicting sales of 38 million TVs for Western Europe. Hi-fi and home movie theatre products saw sales in France and Germany rising, with consumer spending for an excellent home movie experience increasing year-on-year by around four percent. In all countries, the market for speakers improved, with 5 percent more devices sold, generating a value sales increase of 15 percent. Consumers are clearly focusing more strongly on quality as sound bars, which improve sound for the flat-screen LED TVs, continue to be particularly successful. OLED and 4K – the big news at IFA 2012 Big AMOLED TVs are sure to be the stars of IFA 2012. Active-matrix organic lightemitting diode (AMOLED) represents a rapidly growing and highly promising technology for all display applications. Based on planned investments, NPD DisplaySearch forecasts that the market for such panels will grow nearly tenfold from 2.3M square meters in 2012 to more than 22M in 2016. 4K is also known as “Ultra” HD TV – or UHDTV – generally 3840 x 2160 pixels (8.3 megapixels). Images are generally up-scaled from Full HD, and are so clear and crisp that they often “appear” to be in 3D. More on the market: Over the next days, IFA International will be bringing you in-depth reports on the industry from GfK, DisplaySearch, Meko, IDC, Gartner and Futuresource. IFA International • Friday 31 st August 2012 23

IFA International