Billboard’s Picks for Consumer Electronics – Billboard

The closest Europe has to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is Berlin’s IFA, or ‘Internationale Funkausstellung’. Held annually, it is the largest consumer electronics trade show on the continent, where companies from around the world come to exhibit their latest audio, video, mobile and other devices. And although the ‘funk’ in the title comes from the German word for ‘radio’ – the event dates back to the 1920s – this year’s edition was brought to life by plenty of cool gadgets – new tablets and advanced TVs, as well only true innovations in audio and virtual reality.

This year, Billboard awarded prizes to 15 products that seem essential, innovative or, in some cases, just plain cool. Winners include pioneering virtual reality products, but also new items that elevate standard tech beyond everyday reality, such as solar-powered headphones and futuristic-looking aluminum gaming PCs.

Fender Indio2 Bluetooth speaker

Garett King

BEST BLUETOOTH SPEAKER, HEAVYWEIGHT DIVISION—Fender Indio2

Designed by the Southern California team responsible for Fender amplifiers, and featuring 60 watts of power and two 3.5-inch woofers, the Indio2 is a Bluetooth speaker worthy of the name and design style. from the legendary instrument company. The Indio2 – which retails for $380 in black and $400 in tweed – runs on a rechargeable lithium battery (up to 25 hours of playtime), plays music wirelessly or via a 3.5mm jack, and can pair with another speaker like this for stereo sound that can get loud enough to disturb neighbors. Just one question: why doesn’t the volume go up to eleven?

BEST BLUETOOTH SPEAKER, LIGHT DIVISION — Boompod Zero

Not every outdoor occasion calls for a serious speaker – sometimes you want one you can throw in a backpack, or even a purse or jacket pocket. The Boompod Zero, small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, is perfect for such occasions. Sound is solid, especially when two speakers are paired, and, at $40, the price is right. These speakers are waterproof and small enough to fit in a beach bag. They’re also available in a range of colors, with more coming soon.

Duomondi Spero 16

Duomondi Spero 16

Courtesy of Duomondi

BEST PSYCHEDELIC SPEAKER — Duomondi Spero 16

You have your psychedelic light in my speaker! You have your speaker in my psychedelic light! Duomondi designed Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups with premium sound and vision. Its Spero speakers are diagonal cubes on feet suitable for sculptures, and their angles light up. (The light show can be customized with an app, of course.) Sound is serious too: the portable mid-level Spero 16 (pricing not yet available) packs 45 watts of power, and each individual unit has left and right. stereo speakers, plus plenty of bass. They can also be paired. It’s the art of noise.

Anker Soundcore Space Q45

Anker Soundcore Space Q45

Courtesy of Anker

BEST OVER-EAR HEADPHONES — Soundcore Space Q45

Over-ear headphones are better known for sound than innovation, but Anker’s $150 Soundcore Space Q45 scores well on both counts. Sound is impressive, thanks to the 40mm drivers – further customizable with the company’s HearID technology – and the adaptive noise-canceling technology is powerful enough to quiet planes, trains and automobiles and flexible enough to lower indoors where there is less background noise. Users can choose from five levels of transparency and noise cancellation to better focus on their favorite music.

Jabra Elite 5

Jabra Elite 5

Courtesy of Jabra

BEST HEADPHONES — Jabra Elite 5

Danish company Jabra has its roots in the hearing aid industry and is focused on making headphones that fit, a decidedly simple strategy that results in more comfort and less risk of falls, as well as better his. (Better fit – also known as “passive noise cancellation” – means less background noise and therefore better audio quality.) allows users to customize their sound settings.

TECNO True 1

TECNO True 1

Courtesy of TECNO

BEST EARBUDS UNDER $100 — TECNO True 1

Available at the end of the year for between $70 and $90, Tecno’s True 1s may not be the best audiophile headphones, but they offer impressive value for less than $100. They feature the quality adaptive noise cancellation typically found in more expensive products and a mic setup for crystal-clear phone calls, plus software to optimize performance in an impressive variety scenarios and a customizable equalizer to customize the sound according to user preferences. They look quite stylish too.

THE BEST HEADPHONES FOR A (ANOTHER) GREEN WORLD — Urbanista Phoenix

At this point, there’s not much you can do with the headphones. So Urbanista has given the built-in battery in its Phoenix range – due later this year but not yet priced – a conceptual charge. The earphones charge in a case, as most do, but the case itself is powered by light – it charges faster in sunlight, even if a good lamp powers it. The sound is solid, the concept is cool, and the convenience is unbeatable. Let the sun in.

BEST MONITOR OF THE FUTURE – TCL 34 Inch Mini Curved LED Gaming Monitor

This state-of-the-art gaming monitor doesn’t have an expected price or release date, or even a name! – but its image quality attracted a lot of attention at the IFA. It features an immersive curved screen – perfect for gaming – with an advanced mini-LED and 165Hz refresh rate. It’s crisp enough to make viewers feel like they’re in a game.

XGimi Halo+ Projector

XGimi Halo+ Projector

Courtesy of XGimi

BEST SCREEN, PORTABLE DIVISION — XGIMI Halo+ Projector

If you want to bring a great outdoor spectacle – imagine watching Yellowstone in Yellowstone – XGIMI’s $850 Halo+ Projector will do the trick. It’s a serious projector (1080p, 900 ANSI lumens, and a maximum screen size of 200 inches) with smart screen adaptation to simplify screen alignment, and it’s a battery that can last up to at half past two. Perfect for a camping trip that’s less star gazing than gazing star wars.

TCL Nxtwear S

TCL Nxtwear S

Courtesy of TCL

BEST SCREEN, SPYGLASS EDITION – TCL Nxtwear S

TCL’s Nxtwear glasses look like a virtual reality platform from the future, but they deliver a laptop screen right here in the present. The upcoming Nxtwear S – expected in some markets in Q4 this year, but no pricing information yet – packs two 1080p micro OLED displays, which can display the equivalent of a 140-inch screen, as well than speakers built into the goggles. (Good news for those who wear regular glasses: it also offers basic corrective lenses that clip underneath.) TCL touts the product as ideal for air travelers working on confidential documents, but in Berlin attendees of the conference were quick to point out that it will inevitably, and unfortunately, be used to watch pornography on public transport. Willkommen in the future!

Bleujour MOVE Ultimate

Bleujour MOVE Ultimate

Courtesy of Bleujour

BEST GAMING PC (WHICH LOOKS LIKE THE FUTURE) — Bleu Jour Move Ultimate PC

Gaming PCs have been available in super cool form factors for over a decade. But if you want to enter an online gaming tournament like you’re the master of the place, the powerful Blue Day Move Ultimate PC might be your weapon of choice. Starting at around $1,000 – and up to more than four times that, depending on the buyer’s choice of processor, graphics card and storage – the Move Ultimate comes in an aluminum case and multiple colors fashionable, like a lunchbox of Elroy Jetson future punk phase.

Honor 70 mobile phone

Honor 70 mobile phone

courtesy honor

BEST NEW MOBILE PHONE – Honor 70

Tired of filming concerts without being able to focus on the singer? The Honor 70 has a “solo cut” mode which uses two cameras, the new Sony IMX800 sensor and advanced image software to allow users to shoot a scene and choose a person to focus on. (It can follow and focus on a lead singer or a single child in a school play.) It’s perfect for videos and photos. The phone looks good too, with a screen that bends around the edge of the phone. Honor has no plans to sell the device in the US, although it will work there. it sells for €550 in Europe, and American gadgets should have no trouble finding one.

Honor Cushion 8

Honor Cushion 8

courtesy honor

BEST NEW TABLET – Honor Pad 8

The new Honor Pad 8 has eight built-in speakers and sound-tuning technology that make it perfect for on-the-go listening – it’s got big sound for a slim tablet. The visuals are also impressive: it has a sleek 6.9mm body and a 12-inch 2K display. The device can also connect to the Honor 70 with the company’s Magic-Link software. Like the Honor 70, this $350 tablet won’t be released in the US, but it will work there, and it shouldn’t be too hard to find.

Dayholi VR Dome

Dayholi VR Dome

Courtesy of Dayholi

BEST WIND OF CHANGE — Dayholi VR Dome

Virtual reality cannot live on glasses alone. So says Dayholi, which makes a Dayholi.com VR dome that can add “wind” and smell to the visuals and sound transmitted through glasses and headphones. The “wind” comes from fans that vary in speed and direction, and the company has already synthesized several smells that the dome can release. (Anyone smell-O-Vision?) Could the VR Dome make virtual reality more real? Right now, pricing starts at $25,000, but there’s a market for rental and it’s a hell of a talking point.

BEST SOUND OF THE FUTURE — Mimi Hearing Wellbeing Platform

Berlin-based start-up Mimi is a pioneer in “audio personalization”: it tests a user’s hearing, then offers personalized presets based on that. It does not offer a consumer product, but partners with headphone manufacturers and other companies to integrate its software into their products. The idea is to create the perfect sound for a particular listener – not an imaginary ideal.

Luz W. German