Last month, we reported on the pre-launch of a new brand…the rather boldly named AudioXperts – founded by well-known industry veteran, Eli Harary and the team of sales, marketing, engineering, and product specialists he assembled. This pre-launch announcement was then followed-up by an official launch at a press event in Manhattan on Tuesday of this week. For a lot of reasons, this was a notable event – not the least of which is that there are very few new companies launching in the current incredibly difficult industry environment. But this “birth of a brand” also – for a number of reasons – set a very high bar for expectations related to its launch, which drew a substantial press contingent.
Shows & Events
In an association that is somewhat unique in our industry, Indy Audio Labs, LLC, (IAL) the company that manufacturers the Acurus & Aragon high-end brands, has hired John Caldwell, founder and CEO of Grace Motif to handle sales for the IAL brands. Interestingly, they have awarded Caldwell the title of Vice President of Sales for IAL while he retains his title and functions at Grace Motif. [Read more…] about Grace Motif’s John Caldwell to Handle U.S. Sales for Indy Audio Labs’ Acurus & Aragon Brands
One of the more interesting stops we made during our rounds at last month’s 2012 CEA Line Show was to see a new company with a brand new product not yet on the market…but coming soon. That company, Engage Audio Design, has announced and shown a simplified total home theater package called Unity Home Theater. If the actual shipping product adheres closely to the prototype shown at the show – they just may have a real winner on their hands!
What’s so great about Unity? You’ve got to read on…
At last month’s 2012 CEA Line Show in New York City, tucked amongst the many manufacturer’s press conferences was a variety of panels discussing what the CEA purported to be today’s top issues. One such panel, the Next Gen TV panel, talked about…as you might imagine…emerging TV technologies like OLED, 4K resolution, and Internet-enabled TVs. Many in our business would suggest that this is old news. But things got more interesting when the panel strayed from technology topics and veered into a variety of industry issues, such as TV makers technology roll-out strategies, the politics of 4K, and Apple entering the TV business. [Read more…] about CEA Line Show Next Gen TV Panel Talks Tech, Specialty Retail, and Apple iTV
At the CEA Line Show last month, we saw a whole spectrum of exhibitors, including: 1) Unknown brands vying to get the attention of the tech press; 2) Well-known brands showing products again that have already been announced and shown; 3) And then there were a couple of surprises – well-known companies showing entirely new products or product categories. SpeakerCraft, a well-known predominantly custom integration supplier, surprised us with a new product in a new category for them…they call it Protegé.
Call it Protegé…but don’t call it a soundbar… [Read more…] about SpeakerCraft Crafts a New Kind of Speaker
Years ago, the step-up component audio world was dominated by the big three: Yamaha, Onkyo, and Denon. Having joined Onkyo in 1985, I got to participate in what some people called the “meat of the market.” These brands hit the optimal “sweet spot” of volume and profitability and literally could be the difference between life-and-death for dealers.
And we knew it. Those were heady times, and often we let our egos run wild – turning our noses up at mass market brands such as Sony, Kenwood, and Pioneer. Well, I’m older and wiser now – the big three aren’t what they used to be – and I recognize smart and savvy moves when I see them…and Pioneer is impressing me. [Read more…] about Is Pioneer Another Name for Innovator?
At the CEA LineShow last week, Monster put on a press conference that, as usual, was quite a show. And the first surprise was that the event was kicked off by a new Monster – recently appointed Global VP of Marketing and Web Tracy Benson. Benson, a former Senior Director at Best Buy, wasted no time launching into the presentation by reminding reporters that Monster Beats “proved them wrong” when many said consumers would not pay more for a better, more richer listening experience. [Read more…] about Monster Announces New Monster, New Partnerships, and Mini-Fashion Show
The 2012 CEA Line Show wrapped up today and as usual, it was a combination of mind-numbing “me-too” posers, mixed in with a handful of some real, creative, innovators. The problem is, it took a lot of patience to wade through all of the literally hundreds of booths, and thousands of people to dig through muck…and find the gems.
See our show overview… [Read more…] about CEA Line Show Overview
EH Publishing announced today that it is launching a new trade event next year that they call CE Exchange. The CE Exchange event will be held over a three-day period from May 6-to-May 8, 2013 at the MGM Grand Hotel in the Foxwoods Resort and Casino in Mashantucket, Connecticut. Targeted primarily to appeal to custom integrators in the northeast, the promoter says this is a new kind of event – not a typical trade show…but not a conference either.
So just what is CE Exchange?… [Read more…] about EHX 2.0? EH Publishing Gambles on a New Trade Event at a Connecticut Casino
This week at D+M Group’s press presentation, the company focused on two major new product categories that appear to be targeted areas of growth for the company. After a general presentation with overview, the company broke up the rather large group of reporters into two sections: Group A, my group, went directly to a special display of docking products…or complete music systems with an iPod/iPad/iPhone dock. Group B went to headphones (see my report on Denon’s new headphone line here).