We’ll all need something to look forward to in late July when the World Cup and Wimbledon are over, and that ‘something’ could well be IFA (Internationale Funkausstellung Berlin), Europe’s biggest electronics show.
From 31st August to 5th September, Messe Berlin will once again open its doors to host the show (now in its 58th year), which is traditionally a launch pad for new products and one of our most anticipated fixtures of the year.
With last year’s hoo-ha centred on smart speakers, OLED and 8K TVs, expect to see much of the same this year - only more of it! IFA 2018 will apparently host more innovation and product launches than any previous year.
Here is where you can catch-up on all the product announcements during the show, but for now, in the build up, we take an educated guess at what we expect to see on the show floor…
Will LG install its iconic OLED tunnel for the third year running? We wouldn't be alone in saying we hope so. Equally likely is its indulgence in all things OLED, its 2018 OLED TV range getting off to a flying start with the five-star OLED55C8PLA.
Probably amongst the screens will be its new Atmos soundbar, the SK10Y, and (considering LG’s chief executive officer Jo Seong-Jin and chief technology officer Dr. I.P. Park are due to deliver a keynote about the brand’s ThinQ artifical intelligence), we can expect to see the latest fare that falls under that umbrella - including the G7 ThinQ smartphone and WK7 ThinQ wireless speaker. And maybe an ‘intelligent’ fridge or two. Hopefully there’ll be new new product as well.
We’re more confident than ever with Panasonic’s OLED efforts having recently seen (and awarded five stars to) its TX-55FZ802, and we don’t doubt OLED will be under the spotlight in Panasonic’s booth - probably alongside its recently announced 4K Blu-ray player.
With 2018 marking Panasonic’s 100th birthday, we anticipate more product announcements at IFA to mark the occasion. And of course, the ‘100 Years’ exhibition we saw at CES 2018 could resurface.
Last month, Philips and B&W announced a "a new multi-year exclusive partnership", which we imagine that means better sound on future Philips TVs, courtesy of Bowers & Wilkins. According to both companies, IFA is where we’ll get the "first glimpse of the potential of the new partnership…” Consider us intrigued.
More after the break
While we’ve been able to ogle 8K screens during the last few IFAs thanks to their presence on Sharp’s stand, this could be the first IFA we see an 8K TV (or two) from Samsung. The Korean giant supposedly has two 8K TV ranges up its sleeve, with the first due to launch towards the end of the year.
Who knows what else we could see - Samsung’s next-gen Frame TV? Another high-end (or even new flagship) QLED TV? But with the Samsung Galaxy Unpacked event taking place in New York on August 9th, we now know that IFA won’t be the launch pad for company’s forthcoming Galaxy Note 9.
One of the most prolific AV brands out there, Sony is never short of new products to talk about at IFA. IFA 2017 set the stage for Sony to announce three projectors, wireless noise-cancelling headphones, a HDR-supporting smartphone, a Walkman and a Google Assistant smart speaker. We're expecting sequels and second-gens, and possibly even some more Sony OLED TV news too.
Needless to say it will be all hands on our laptop keyboards during Sony’s press conference on Thursday 30th.