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IFA International 2019 Day 6 Edition

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REGION SPOTLIGHT ON

REGION SPOTLIGHT ON JAPAN JAPAN STARTUPS CREATE INTERFACE BETWEEN CYBERSPACE AND REALITY Having revolutionised tech in the 20 th century, Japan is again investing in young pioneers From the Sony Walkman to Playstation, Japanese companies once led the world in consumer tech innovation. But though Seoul and Silicon Valley have since dominated the digitised CE market, Japan is again breaking new ground on the technology frontier at the interface between humans and machines. As cyberspace and reality become increasingly integrated, a new Japanese government initiative called Society 5.0 is encouraging socalled J-Startups to create AI and IoT technologies that can be seamlessly accessed, especially in an ageing society. That is why Japan, with the backing of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, is the first Global Innovation Partner at IFA Next. “The interface between machines and humans is very important, that is why we have created the ‘Interface with Consideration and Sensibility’ concept at IFA Next,” Masaki Nagamoto, Deputy Director, IT Industry Division, at Japan’s Commerce and Information Policy Bureau, told IFA International. With 20 J-Startups from among 10,000 in Japan selected to come to Berlin for the first time, visitors to the Japan Pavilion at IFA Next have the chance to experience far eastern future technologies for the senses. These include the Pixie Dust Technologies’ Holograph Whisper, a speaker that delivers sound to a target person via ultrasonic waves for a “magical experience”; or QD Laser’s Retissa Display, glasses that project images directly onto the retina using a tiny projector, and which thus overcomes sight impairment. Looking further into the future, SkyDrive is presenting its “affordable, reliable and safe” flying car that aims to democratise air travel for the mass market by 2023 HALL 26 STAND 213 Cutting the ribbon at the IFA Next Japan Pavilion WEAR SPACE A unique wearable device designed to aid concentration by blinkering sight and hearing via a partition that controls the field of view, and noisecancelling headphones, Wear Space is pitched at workers in open offices and digital nomads on the go who need to find a quiet personal space where they can focus. Created by Tokyobased J-startup Shiftall, and with investment from Panasonic, the stylish device is produced by the innovative Future Life Factory and can be adjusted according to the level of concentration desired. It has also been adapted to complement individual fashion choices through a partnership with Kunihiko Morinaga, creator of the fashion brand Anrealage. The highdesign Wear Space has already won a Red Dot Award for the “best of the best” and is being presented for the first time at IFA HALL 26 / STAND 210 LOOKMEE NAP CHECK UniFa has been a leading babytech startup in Japan since 2013, with more than 4000 child care centres using its IoT products and services. At IFA NEXT, the J-startup is showcasing the LookMee Nap Check, which it claims is the world’s first IoT system dedicated to afternoon sleep checking in childcare centres. In order to detect any problems that may arise as a baby sleeps, such as unwanted on-stomach sleeping or a concerning lack of movement leading to SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome), an alert is sent via an app to a smartphone or tablet. The product seamlessly integrates with other UniFa healthcare products such as the LookMee Thermometer, an IoT thermometer system that allows users to measure and monitor babies’ and children’s body temperature in seconds HALL 26 / STAND 210 20

© Thomas Keller HOSPITALITY / RESTAURANTS / BARS CLUBS / EVENTS / SHOPPING / CULTURE Berlin City Palace: a Baroque revival Visitors might be amazed by the amount of building work surrounding the Baroque silhouette of Berlin City palace. Like a phoenix, the impressive palace is rising again, after vanishing from the cityscape for half a century. The extraordinary saga of the reconstruction reflects the tumultuous history of the German capital. The campaign to rebuild Berlin’s most iconic monument - it’s royal palace - had been gathering momentum for years, amid much public debate. Founded in 1443 as the residence and fortress for the Hohenzollern Dynasty, it was designed in Baroque style by the architect Andreas Schlüter in 1698. The finishing touches to the palace’s impressive facades were made in 1845, with the construction of the Neosander Portal, a majestic entrance gate with a vaulted dome overlooking Berlin’s main avenue, Unter Den Linden. The home of Prussian Kings and then the Emperor, the palace was transformed into a museum in the 1920s. But in February 1945, the palace was engulfed in flames following heavy wartime bombing of the city centre. Despite the extensive damage, subsequent years saw it being used to house art exhibitions. While experts believed that the palace could be restored to its former splendour, the new Communist authorities in East Germany had another plan. Considering it a symbol of Hohenzollern imperialism, they demolished it in 1950 to make way for a large empty space used for political parades. Only one gate survived and was preserved and absorbed into the nearby State Council of the GDR, which is today a private school of economics. In the 1970s, the East German government built a modernist structure, the Palace of the Republic. It stood there for 25 years until the unified German government decided to rebuild the palace, despite controversy about the €600 million bill. Work began in 2012, and this year marks the end of a massive reconstruction project, creating a new gem in Berlin’s historic centre. Originally due to open in September, the inauguration has been delayed by a year. However, surrounding gardens provide multiple possibilities for taking pictures while visitors can admire the talent of German craftsmen who recreated its Baroque glory. Next year, the ground floor and first floor will be opened welcoming exhibitions of Berlin City Museum, shops, restaurants and coffee shops as well as meeting rooms. And in 2021, it will become home to the Ethnology and Asian Arts Museum © Luc Citrinot www.ifa-international.org IFA International • Wednesday 11 September 2019 21

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