High-Resolution Audio: Hype or Opportunity?

June 22, 2015
The Renaissance in audio has ushered in incredible—and even heretical— innovations that have forever altered the listening landscape for consumers and instantly transformed the music industry. Audiophiles’ inquisition of the iPod proved ineffective as consumers embraced the new religion of iTunes and convenience seemingly conquered quality. Yet broad consumer adoption of headphones has signaled a desire—and willingness to pay for—a better listening experience. Enter high-resolution audio, the latest technology preaching a better sound platform. Is this just another fanatical market or something more? The good news is a burgeoning segment of consumers may be...

Independent Retailers' Success Benefits All

June 12, 2015
Independent CE retailers—AV dealers, electronics/ appliance stores and custom installers—are often described with this paraphrase of the late Rodney Dangerfield’s line, “They get no respect, no respect at all!” Around 2000, one used to hear another line from CE execs about the state of retailing: “Pretty soon we’ll only be selling to Walmart and Best Buy.” In recent years the line changed to, “Pretty soon we’ll only be selling Amazon and Walmart.” Savvy CE execs have always countered that you can’t just rely on online retailers or national chains because they will (and do) dictate terms, many times to the detriment...

Mass Customization: Creating a World of Ranges

June 10, 2015
When you went to bed last night, how did you set your alarm? You likely chose a specific time to begin the day based on your schedule. In the future, this will change; our alarms will rouse us at the optimal time to wake up, within a range, not at the stroke of 5:45 or 7:15 a.m. Our devices will design a customized awakening range for us, based on the sleep cycle data they collect. Using simple motion sensors, wearable and phone application technology can discern the lightest phase of sleep in our cycle and rouse us at the least jarring time. So, instead of us choosing a specific time based on basically nothing, our...

Movies Made For (And On) Mobile

June 03, 2015
In Hollywood today, “small” is very big for both the screens on which video is enjoyed and also for the tools used to produce new TV shows and movies. Watching videos on a handheld device— including motion pictures, TV programs as well as made-for-Web productions on YouTube, Vine and Vimeo—has become the new norm as viewers opt for transportable convenience. In its latest Visual Networking Index, Cisco determined that 55 percent of mobile bandwidth was used to carry video last year. By 2019, in a wireless world of constantly escalating scale, mobile video traffic will be 13 times greater than it was last year, and Cisco expects that 72 percent of all wireless...

Video Viewing

April 30, 2015
As the way we watch video shifts, different age groups are using new video delivery methods and recommendation engines. The Content Distribution & Discovery Revolution from CEA and the National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE) looks at these differences, from the sources of video content to the devices these various groups prefer to view their content on. Source: CEA Market Research Related: Market Beat: How Streaming Video is Reshaping TV

How Streaming Video is Reshaping TV

April 30, 2015
A Baby Boomer and a Millennial walk into a living room to watch TV… a real-world scenario where the joke is on the incumbent television production industry. The punch line is these age groups approach the activity of watching TV so differently that the traditional TV programming model is completely disrupted. A new research study, The Content Distribution & Discovery Revolution from CEA and the National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE) describes how the paradigm for TV content discovery and engagement has changed dramatically with increased availability and use of...

Wearables Keep Consumers Fit

April 27, 2015
At nearly $2 billion, the wearable health and fitness category is no longer a niche market. You can’t go far without spotting someone sporting a Fitbit, FuelBand or some other fitness tracker. The public’s interest in health and fitness has intersected with developments in digital technology, low power batteries and APIs to create the perfect conditions for adoption among mainstream consumers. Plus, with brands like Reebok and Under Armour getting involved, not to mention designers including Tory Burch and Ralph Lauren, wearables are now fashionable. Remarkable Growth According to CEA, the wearable business will see unit sales reach 30.9 million in 2015, up 61 percent from...

Amazon Feeds Streaming Appetite

April 24, 2015
 

The “Internet of Me”

April 23, 2015
In 1995, the masses not only knew about the Internet, but used it on a daily basis. The Internet had gone mainstream, no longer serving a specific community of academics, government agencies and tech geeks, but instead serving 40 million consumers worldwide, including 2.5 million in the U.S. The Internet experience was defined by two browsers, Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer. When people said they were “online,” we knew exactly what they meant. However, we are nearing the end of the first Internet phase as the Internet becomes something else entirely. This is evidenced by the answer to this simple question: When was the last time you went online? The answer to this...
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