IFA 2019: news and highlights from Europe's biggest tech show

IFA 2019 news and highlights
(Image credit: IFA)

It's time for IFA 2019, the 95th year of the Internationale Funkausstellung Berlin convention. This week, officially from Friday 6th to Wednesday 11th September, the Messe Berlin is opening its doors to brands from all over the world for a sublime showcase of all the latest and greatest consumer electronics products.

We're talking 1814 exhibitors occupying 161,200 square metres (about 23 football pitches) of show floor space, from 8K TVs and wireless headphones to smart home and autonomous car tech. It's a who's who of consumer electronics brands, too, so expect IFA news from Sony, Samsung, LG, Panasonic, Philips and more.

So what new products can we expect from IFA 2019? We are, as we type, reporting live from the show all week...

IFA 2019: when and where?

IFA takes place at Messegelände Berlin ExpoCenter City, an exhibition space in the Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf precinct of Berlin, Germany.

Thursday 5th September was exclusively for the media and when all the press conferences took place and the majority of the biggest news announcements dropped. 

The show opens to the public on Friday 6th September, running right through until Wednesday 11th. The show is open 10am to 6pm (CET) daily.

IFA 2019: Day 4 highlights

The best new products at IFA 2019: Sonos Move, Sony Walkman and more

Hisense to launch first Roku TVs in the UK this year

IFA 2019: Day 3 highlights

Hands on: Philips OLED+984 TV review

Dali unveils its first ever headphones

Philips undercuts Sony and Bose with new ANC headphones

JBL adds Link Portable and Link Music to its family of wireless speakers

Pioneer introduces its new 'reference' AV receivers and SACD player

Focal replaces Chorus range with new 'affordable' Chora speakers

Sony adds high-end SA-Z1 speaker system to its Signature Series

LG G8X ThinQ takes on foldable phones with dual-screen design

IFA 2019: Day 2 highlights

Panasonic Transparent OLED TV will launch in 2020

Cambridge Audio CXA61 review

Cambridge Audio looks to rival Rega with fully furnished CXA61, CXA81 amps

Toshiba brings Android TV and built-in Alexa mics to its 2020 TVs

Sharp adds Android TV smart platform to its affordable 4K TV ranges

Braun Audio revives classic LE speakers at IFA 2019

Samsung confirms Amazon Prime Video will stream Premier League football in 4K

TCL rolls out X10 series QLED TVs and Dolby Atmos soundbar

Sennheiser introduces next-gen PXC 550-II wireless Bluetooth headphones

JBL's new Pulse 4 Bluetooth speaker is a seriously colourful character

JBL unveils Live 300TWS true wireless earbuds

Hands on: Sonos Move review

Sonos Move launched alongside Play:1 and Connect successors

Philips' OLED 754 is a budget OLED with Alexa built in

Sony streaming Walkman NW-ZX507 goes live at IFA 2019

Philips unveils two OLED TVs with Bowers & Wilkins Atmos speakers

Samsung launches 55-inch 8K QLED TV with HDR10+

Sennheiser Momentum Wireless review

Sennheiser Momentum Wireless headphones aim to reclaim noise-cancelling crown

Hisense goes 8K at IFA 2019 with big-screen U9E ULED TVs

IFA 2019: Day 1 highlights

Amazon unveils new Fire TV Cube, Fire TV Edition televisions and soundbar

IMAX Enhanced films coming to Europe on Sony Bravia TVs

JBL launches three new streaming and HDMI-toting soundbars

House of Marley exhibits eco-conscious wireless deck, earbuds and speaker at IFA

Definitive Technology's Studio Slim is a stylish, streaming-savvy soundbar

Audio Technica builds on Award-winning USB turntable for new AT-LP5x

Audio Technica ATH-CKS5TW true wireless buds boast impressive 45-hour battery

IFA 2019: pre-show news

Samsung's 8K QLED TV, launched at IFA 2018

Samsung's 8K QLED TV, launched at IFA 2018 (Image credit: Future)

Bang & Olufsen kickstarted IFA week by launching its first ever soundbar (yes, you read that correctly). The Beosound Stage is the Brad Pitt/Jennifer Lawrence of soundbars to look at, marrying premium materials with a gorgeous, architecturally-influenced, single-box form.
MORE: Hands on: Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage review

After a 28-year hiatus, Braun is back in the hi-fi sphere with a reinvention of its 1959 speaker range known as LE – and they're going to debuted at IFA.
MORE: Braun Audio is back, reworked 1959 LE speakers incoming

There's always plenty of brand spanking newness from Harman brands JBL and Harman Kardon at IFA – and this year won't likely be any different. "We will be further refining and expanding our portfolio of personalised, smart products and solutions," says Harman.
Harman IFA press conference: Thursday 6th September, 2pm CET

The B&O Beosound Stage in a smoked oak finish

The B&O Beosound Stage in a smoked oak finish (Image credit: Future)

Last year LG showed off a 88in 8K OLED and giant 173in MicroLED display, and this year we expect more eyebrow-raising TVs and, it's as teased in the company's 'save the date' invitation, a foldable, triple-screen smartphone! The Korean brand often announces any product launches in the run up to the show, so we'll be keeping an eye on its global newsroom in the days prior.
LG IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 10am CET

What's Panasonic doing at IFA? If we were Panasonic, we'd be resting from last year's seemingly-all-year-round 100th birthday celebrations. As yet, we don't know what, if anything, Panasonic will launch, but there are bound to be the company's latest 4K TVs (including the "great" TX-50GX800B) on show. Panasonic won't be hosting a press conference at IFA this year, but there is a TV press briefing we may learn a thing or two in.

IFA 2018 debuted the first collaboration between Philips and B&W, a "multi-year exclusive partnership" that was announced just a month prior. The 55OLED903 OLED TV with an integrated B&W soundbar has recently been joined by a new 8804 Series of LCD models with B&W audio. Will there be further additions to the collaborative line-up? All will be revealed on the Thursday.
Philips IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 12pm CET

LG's upcoming foldable, triple-screen phone

LG's upcoming foldable, triple-screen phone (Image credit: LG)

Always sure to make one of the biggest splashes at any trade show, we expect IFA 2019 will be no different for Samsung. Last year it was 8K QLED TVs and 8K AI upscaling, and with Samsung backing 8K even more strongly this year, we'd expect more big-screen, high-resolution screens at the company's stand in Berlin.
Samsung IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 11am CET

Not surprising since it's been demo-ing 8K longer than any other brand at IFA, Sharp is set to reiterate its ‘change the world with 8K and AIoT (Artificial intelligence of things)’ vision. Expect both TV and audio launches... and the world's biggest 8K LCD display, no less.
Sharp IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 4pm CET

Sonos is using IFA to host, in its words, the company's "biggest event of the year". The company is holding press events on Wednesday 4th and Thursday 5th, which could mean two new products. We have a very good idea what one is: the Sonos Move portable Bluetooth speaker, which has been leaked prior to the events. Exciting indeed.

The Sonos Move looks to be the company's first battery-powered, Bluetooth speaker

The Sonos Move looks to be the company's first battery-powered, Bluetooth speaker (Image credit: WinFuture)

Sony has sent a 'save the date' for its press conference but has traditionally kept tight-lipped on what it will announce. The company launched the Award-winning WH-1000XM3 wireless headphones last year, so will we see an update? There could be a new high-end Walkman – it is the music player's 40th anniversary after all – and a long-awaited successor to its multi-Award-winnning STR-DN1080. One thing's for sure, the show will provide people an opportunity to see the recently-launched WF-1000XM3 true wireless buds.
Sony IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 1pm CET

Anything new from Technics always attracts plenty of attention. Last year it was a new SACD player and amplifier, while previous years have of course seen the company's relaunched turntables take centre stage (in 2017 it was the SP-10R). This year? The company might be happy to show off its SL-1200/SL-1210 MK7.

We can expect a plethora of products from the Chinese manufacturer this year following its recent move into the audio world in the UK. Its 2018 European sales volume has surged by 43.1 per cent year-on-year, so we'd expect to see the brand double-down with more new products at IFA 2019...
TCL IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 2:30pm CET

Toshiba will launch a whole new range of home entertainment products, one, or maybe several, of which will be a TV. We don't know any other details at this stage, but we can expect a series of budget 4K sets as well as a more premium OLED.
Toshiba IFA press conference: Thursday 5th September, 4pm CET

Brand-new product won't be order of the day for Yamaha at IFA, but it will be showcasing its catalogue in its entirety – from its wide range of MusicCast multi-room products (which includes its RX-V and RX-A AV amps and MusicCast Vinyl 500 turntable) to its high-end 5000 Series hi-fi. There'll also be the chance to check out its new YAS-109 and YAS-209 soundbars.

IFA 2018 highlights

It only feels like last month we were at last year's IFA eyeing up 8K TVs, rolling the B&O Edge speaker and getting excited about the-just-announced and now Award-winning Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones, but time flies in the technology industry.

8K TVs very much hogged the IFA 2018 limelight, with the remaining rays left to shine on all-new smart speakers, headphones by the likes of Sony, AKG and Beyerdynamic, a Technics streamer and a Philips and B&W TV collaboration – all of which you can read all about in our 9 of the best new products from IFA 2018 article.

Becky Roberts

Becky is the managing editor of What Hi-Fi? and, since her recent move to Melbourne, also the editor of Australian Hi-Fi magazine. During her 10+ years in the hi-fi industry, she has reviewed all manner of audio gear, from budget amplifiers to high-end speakers, and particularly specialises in headphones and head-fi devices. In her spare time, Becky can often be found running, watching Liverpool FC and horror movies, and hunting for gluten-free cake.