From the moment the organizers of the IFA 2020 Special Edition announced they were going ahead with plans for a hybrid physical/virtual event, the anticipation was palpable.
And one of the most “special” aspects to this reimagined “Special Edition” of IFA is how they have taken a piece of the event that typically takes place in April as a prelude to IFA, and made it the exhibition centerpiece at this show. The IFA Global Press Conference (GPC) has welcomed journalists from around the world to an exhibition space full of manufacturers showcasing their latest product innovations prior to the all-important Q4 holiday selling season.
Here’s what a sampling of attendees are saying:
Overheard On IFA Show Floor…
Martin Liu, CEO of Focalcrest Inc.
The rebound and recovery of our industry starts here at the IFA 2020 Special Edition. As a smart home solution provider, Mixtile will participate in IFA NEXT 2020, showcasing the Mixtile Relay Switch, an innovative no neutral wire required relay switch, giving you a smarter lighting control experience while eliminating many of the inconveniences like flickering lights.
Kim Jin-Hong, Head of LG Electronics’ Global Marketing Center
Although we would prefer to be participating under better circumstances, we are excited to be a part of IFA 2020 to share with consumers around the globe our vision for a healthier and infinitely more convenient home. Through our strength in AI and human-centric design, we are creating a fully integrated suite of products and services that makes it easier to live, work and relax at home.
Matthias Ginthum, Chief Markets Officer (CMO), BSH Hausgeräte GmbH
The corona pandemic has reinforced the trend of recent years: the home is the center of our lives. Here we create an environment for our everyday life that gives us quality of life and suits us. Home appliances play an important role here, because their functions give us a feeling of security and countless possibilities – from reliable performance and daily relief to inspiration and enjoyment. We continue to work on this with our innovative strength. That is why we are also supporting the alternative concept of the IFA this year and are taking part in the Global Press Conference. It is important to us to present to international media representatives how our devices and digital services offer new solutions for a comfortable, smart and responsible home.
The world economy has been badly hit by the pandemic. The current developments give hope that our home appliance industry will recover somewhat faster than other industries. It is therefore all the more important now to work together to offer consumers attractive incentives. IFA is and will remain the most important showcase for trends and innovations. As the market leader, we are therefore taking advantage of the alternative concept of IFA 2020 and will present new answers and solutions for every consumer need with our equipment and digital services at the IFA Global Press Conference on September 3. Because more than ever, the home is the center of our lives. Home appliances are an important part of everyday life and directly represent quality of life.
Harald Friedrich, Executive Director, Robert Bosch
As a result of the lockdown and the continuing restrictions, issues that were already among the major social trends before have once again accelerated and intensified significantly. These include, for example, cocooning, cooking together, regionality, conscious living and shopping as well as health and safety. Our home appliances ensure that consumers can enter the everyday life of tomorrow with confidence. Even more, they make it easier for them to maintain a conscious, healthy and sustainable lifestyle. This year’s innovations across all appliance categories deliver on this promise.
Chengdong (Richard) Yu, CEO Huawei
Huawei has been participating in IFA for nine years. It has been an excellent platform for Huawei to promote our products and strategies as well as meeting friends around the world. We look forward to joining the event in the new form.
Thomas Nedder, Neato CEO
Neato is delighted to return to IFA and introduce our latest products at this important industry event. During a time where there is a greater focus on cleaning in the home, we look forward to helping continue innovation and progress in the growing robot vacuum industry.
Franz-Josef Hasebrink, CEO of EK/ServiceGroup
To us, IFA is an important driving force and always a fixed date in our calendar. We will be there again this year with our team, taking into account the very good security concept, in order to learn about exciting new products and innovations for our more than 4,000 affiliated retail partners. All market participants benefit from a strong IFA. For us as a Buying Association and thus a creator of networks between trade and industry, IFA is very important.
Global Media Buzzing Too
The global media are equally excited to be covering a CE event – in the flesh – as we found when we chatted with a few prior to the opening of IFA 2020 Special Edition.
Dragan Petric, Bug, Executive Editor, www.bug.hr
Executive Editor Dragan Petric of tech website Bug, feels a kind of historic responsibility at this year’s IFA telling us:
As a tech editor, industry insider and opinion maker, I feel obligated to my audience to witness and report about events that I believe will be historic – such as the first “real” international industry gathering after lockdown. It will be a game-changer: many will follow the example and it will be the first truly exciting ride in the consumer electronics industry months after most of the engines got shot down. Those who will attend as exhibitors will gain great market advantage and will be remembered as bold, trustworthy and open-minded, and we live in times when buyers want to relate to brands with exactly those characteristics. Media reps who attend will be remembered as brave, dedicated and superior, and this is what every tech journalist should try to be. I’ve been cooperating with people behind IFA Global Press Conference for years, and knowing their unprecedented enthusiasm, dedication to high standards and awareness of their role in this industry, I’m confident this will be an event that will be celebrated and congratulated by the whole world.
As a human being, on the other side, I’m so much excited to finally meet my international colleagues – both journalists and tech company reps – in real life. I love my job because I love people who I have the opportunity to work with, so meeting them all in person after months and months of video calls, texting, social media interaction and other digital-only ways of communication makes me feel like I’m going on excursion – not a business trip.
Joachim Dünkelmann, Editor, hitec magazine
Joachim Dünkelmann is another consumer technology industry journalist that is looking forward to getting back in the trade show trenches at IFA 2020 Special Edition. At the event for Germany’s Hitech magazine, Dünkelmann told us the following:
I have been visiting IFA since 1993 and didn’t miss even one show – and I don’t want to start with that because of a virus. It is the only place to be for a tech journalist at the beginning of September. Nowhere else can you see and feel all that tricky and brand new stuff from the home and consumer electronics world – all on one showground. Very efficient, very inspiring! And always a pleasure to attend!