Emerging technologies. Now there’s a phrase that can cover a multitude of possibilities … as well as a multitude of products that may or may not be accepted by the consumer. The phrase really defines the ever-changing nature of consumer electronics. It is that changeable nature that drives many in the industry crazy, especially in this digital age.
Most feel they can’t get their arms around the industry like they did in the good, old analog-only days, when technologies didn’t seem to change so quickly. The reason for this special report, which will appear in all of the hardware sections of TWICE, including major appliances, is a sense of anxiety that many of us feel about all of the product changes that have occurred during the past few years.
While our special report is not designed to predict which emerging technologies will be winners or vaporware at retail, it will at least inform you of product categories you’ve only heard about. Or it may introduce you to technologies and products of which you’ve never heard.
The technologies discussed in this issue include the following: the wireless transmission of digital images (see p. 22); the latest in DTV set-top box decoders (p. 25); Internet telephony (p. 34); the battle between flash memory formats (p. 26); satellite radio’s imminent rollout (p. 29); and the wide variety of technological innovations in the major appliance business (p. 42).
Whether you think every technology is emerging until it rings up at least 5 million in unit sales, or you are fascinated by the plethora of new technologies entering the marketplace today, the editors of TWICE hope that you find this report informative.