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IFA International 2016 Preview Edition

  • Text
  • Berlin
  • Appliances
  • Products
  • Consumer
  • Electronics
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  • Global
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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW Connected Home Meets Connected Appliances Harald Friedrich CEO, Robert Bosch Hausgeräte GmbH Without a doubt, it’s THE theme at IFA this year – more than ever: CONNECTIVITY. Bosch Home Appliances are spotlighting this in many ways at the show. We asked CEO Harald Friedrich what we can expect to see… When you come to the fair you will see that the topic of “home connectivity” is more in focus than it ever has been in the past years. Our booth will show that very impressively as we have enlarged our range with new products such as hobs and hoods, which add to the assortment of Home Connect appliances, so now we have connected products in every product area. The heart of this is what you term Home Connect, as we know, and at the Innovations Media Briefing you talked about “Home Connect meets the smart home”. How is that happening? Home connect is a stand alone system, and many people say, “I have home connect for home appliances, I have another app for my heating system, I have another app for my lighting system. This is the reason why the Bosch company came up with the idea that we need one 22 platform allowing everything to be piloted with one app. That’s why we started with Bosch Smart Home, integrating, for the moment, certain heating systems as well as Philips light products. It will integrate three different product areas from Home Connect – namely the washing machine, the tumble dryer, and the dishwasher. Sunny Home Manager is also available. If you have photovoltaic panels on your roof, this allows you to set parameters such as “I leave the home by 8 am and by 6 pm the washing machine should be finished – preferably by using my own energy”. Depending on the weather forecast, the system will decide if the electricity is sufficient to get the job done by the time you get home. If there is not enough current from the photovoltaic cells, it will decide, maybe around 3:30 pm, to run the washing cycle with regular electricity. Home Connect is an open source system, and other suppliers are being invited to join in. In the future we could see other items such as window shutters, alarm systems and so on. A topic people continue to be interested in is of course energy consumption. What advances are being made here? In the past, we had big jumps, and of course the more you reduce the energy consumption the higher the effort is for further progress. When you think of cooling appliances, 15 years ago, they consumed 600 Kw/h. Now we’re down to 150. That was a quantum leap. Now if you want to come down from 150 to 100, you have to invest quite a lot of effort and the advantage is not that big any more. Of course we are still developing in this direction as well, but it means more effort. What is the most exciting thing about what’s going on at the moment? I personally think it’s the connectivity. But it’s not JUST about connectivity; it’s also about how you can programme a product. For example, when you get a new dishwasher, you need to tell it the hardness of the water, maybe the loudness of the beeps you get - the alarm signals; and if you do it today, you have to push buttons in combinations, you have to read the manuals, and it’s quite difficult. So if you have a menu guiding you through these processes I think that is much more convenient – and the more electronics we find in the products – and the more features, the easier it is to go through guided menus. What can people expect to see at your stand at IFA? The general impression will be connectivity everywhere. When we started presenting connectivity a few years ago, we had a small area showing what was then a “vision”. Then we had a bigger wall the following year, and last year we had a whole room. Now the whole booth will show connectivity is everywhere. That is the core topic, and around that, (…) THE WHOLE BOOTH WILL SHOW CONNECTIVITY IS EVERYWHERE. in different areas, we have arranged our products; and the main topic will be the hoods, because we have a lot of different designs to offer. The dishwashers will have their part, the washing machines, dryers of course and cooling appliances – where freshness is always a topic… and also the volume or capacity offered by a refrigerator

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW This year, Loewe is back at IFA in a new hall, with some exceptional new products. We asked Mark Hüsges , Managing Director, Loewe, to tell us more. We have had an extremely busy two years since we last had a stand at the IFA. We are restructuring all aspects of the company. It’s a very dynamic industry we are in, and we have to make sure that we continue to be at the forefront of the industry rather than lagging behind. That’s why we focus so much on our products and our systems. TV – the Bild 1. Please tell us more. It’s absolutely essential Loewe as a company is available to a broader range of customers. So we have high end products as well as entrylevel products, but all our products are premium, based on the same TV platform. So the Bild 1 is not an entry-level product in the usual sense. It is still quite an advanced spots” for us where it would certainly be interesting for us to add contacts. In May you launched a new campaign, “Loewe One, One Love”… How has that been going, and what were the goals of the campaign? I think it went extremely well. We got a lot of positive feedback for it. It is mainly WE TRULY BELIEVE IN SYSTEMS, NOT JUST PRODUCTS. Loewe is Back… In Style! The Bild 7 is the new flagship you are presenting here at IFA. Please tell us a little more about this. The Bild 7 is a one-of-akind OLED TV that sets new benchmarks in the industry. We are quite proud of the product in terms of its picture and sound performance, but also in terms of the magic moments it creates for its users. One such “magic moment” is when the set is turned on and the screen rises to reveal the 120 watt sound bar. It has a very clean design and is creating a lot of hype. It’s not just the outside of the product, it’s also the inside and the user interface that are entirely new. The OLED image is optimised using our dedicated software, and the line is called VantaVision, inspired by “Vanta Black”, the blackest black known to man. The specialty of the OLED panel is the blackness of the black. The TV also comes equipped with Bluetooth that allows the user to stream music from a smartphone or tablet. You are also promoting a more “affordable” Loewe product with most of the features, and what I think is really interesting is that if you add our new sound system with it, it creates an extremely competitive and high performing package. What is your focus moving forward? The strategy continues to focus around the system. We truly believe in systems, not just products. All our products, when you buy them, can be combined to form a system, and the system approach will dominate our future product introductions. What about expansion plans? We are strong in Europe and particularly strong in German speaking Europe. These regions will continue to be our main focus. We are active in most other parts of the world, but not to the extent that we could be. So there will be areas globally in the future where will be putting greater emphasis. Of course we have distributors in many parts of the world, but there are still some “black an online campaign, which is where we want to go in the future as well when it comes to communicating our products to end customers. It shows we want to be more human… a warmer company that in the past. I think our products are design icons, but they have to fit well into the environment of our customers, and that’s what I wanted to show with the campaign. What will we be seeing from you at IFA this year? We have our own hall this time around, which is new. It’s a whole new concept that we are focusing on when it comes to the booth itself. At the booth we will have a completely new product range beginning from Bild 1 and all the way up to Bild 7 and maybe even a few surprises! IFA is our “home” trade fair, and it has a very high importance for us. We will continue to be present at IFA in the future Mark Hüsges Managing Director, Loewe IFA International • Monday 29 th August 2016 23

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