It’s always educational looking back.
In researching this special year-end issue of TWICE, I continually had that “Wait, that was this year?” feeling. You hang around this industry long enough, and the events, the comings and goings, the closing and openings, the mergers and controversies, they all start to blend together. Then again, it may just be CES Fatigue Syndrome setting in.
Yes, It’s already hitting us at TWICE. We’ve been in full-on CES mode for about a month now, preparing pages for the Official CES Daily and TWICE show issue, setting up appointments, trying to figure out the locations of events — since it seems like a dozen Las Vegas hotels change their name each year. (“Meet you at the Hilton, um ... LVH, no, no ... ... The Westgate!”)
But in this final issue of 2014, we look back on a tumultuous year and find that there was as much good as bad.
First, the bad. It was a tough year at retail for sure. The post-Recession blues, coupled with some horrific winter weather, suppressed the appetites of CE shoppers all year. We lost some old retail friends: J&R Music World, American TV, Office Max. We said goodbye to some legends, like Vance Pflanz and the inimitable Jack Wayman.
But there was also plenty of good. 4K Ultra HD has finally arrived in force. Dolby Atmos almost single-handedly jump-started the audio component business. New categories like drones and wearables offered new opportunities to merchants.
Senior editor Alan Wold lays out the Year In Retailing beginning.
Newsmakers Of The Year
When the TWICE staff sat down to brainstorm our annual Newsmakers Of The Year feature, the list became so long so fast that we decided to expand the section. It was that kind of year in CE. For the record, we defined newsmakers as just that ... those who generated the most interest, the most ink ... and not always for the best reasons. But, in the end, I think the cross-section of industry giants, as well as some lesseracclaimed personalities, paints a wonderful mosaic of the genius, gumption and grit of an industry teeming with brilliant minds. I’d love to get your opinion on our choices and hope you’ll offer some suggestions of your own. Feel free to tweet us @TWICEOnline, post to our Facebook page, shoot off an email or comment on TWICE.com.
Going Social At CES
And speaking of reaching out, TWICE is excited to announce a great enhancement to our coverage of International CES. We will be launching an addition to our website — TWICE.com/LiveatCES2015, which employs a sophisticated social-media curating tool, in cooperation with our sponsoring partner LG Electronics. If you’re at the show or just interested from afar, this will be your one-stop shop for breaking news, photos, event coverage, and maybe some laughs, in real time from TWICE editors and a highly curated list of industry influencers and decision- makers. Please check it out.
And for those of you who are going to the show, I look forward to rubbing elbows. Meantime, happy holidays!