Onkyo Forges Global ‘Strategic Collaboration’ with Imagination Technologies Group

Out of Tokyo, Japan this past Monday came word of a new global strategic collaboration between Onkyo Corporation, U.K.-based Imagination Technologies Group, and Imagination’s consumer division known as Pure. A global technology creator, Imagination Technologies Group largely focuses on multimedia, cloud, mobile, and connected audio technologies – often licensed to major consumer brands as part of their product offerings.

See more on this technology agreement…and what it portends for future Onkyo products… Continue reading

Where Do Consumers Prefer to See Advertisements?

Think you know how the typical consumer – if there is such a thing – feels about advertising in our new digitally-enhanced world? You just might be surprised! For example, in today’s increasingly digital world…marketers are devoting more dollars to digital media such as websites, email marketing, paid search marketing, social media marketing, and more.

But how does traditional print and broadcast media fit into our new digital marketing world?… Continue reading

OK, 3D HDTV Flopped – Industry Turns to Next Trick in Bag: Ultra HDTV

Photo of Sony 4K UHDTV at CEATEC show in Japan

Sony 4K LCD TV at the CEATEC show in Japan earlier this year.
[PHOTO: Junko Kimura/Bloomberg via Getty Images]

It’s a tough time to be an executive at one of the major television manufacturer’s these days. After a record run – with help from the U.S. government mandating a switch to digital broadcasting virtually forcing American consumers to upgrade their sets – the industry appears to have lost its mojo. So, with great fanfare, manufacturers went back to the well, trying to convince consumers to “upgrade” their sets to new 3D capable sets. But 3D was a dismal flop.

Now manufacturers have dug deep into their bag of tricks to offer 4K HDTV, also known as Ultra HDTV… Continue reading

Moody’s Cuts Sony’s Credit Rating Again; Now Just One Notch Above ‘Junk’

Photo of Sony's make.believe logo

PHOTO: Reuters/Yuriko Nakao

The investment community remains unconvinced that new Sony Corp. CEO Kaz Harai is making meaningful headway in turning around the financial performance at the struggling tech manufacturer. And now Reuters is reporting out of Tokyo that credit rating agency Moody’s Investor Services has piled on with another downgrade of the company’s credit, placing it perilously close to “junk” status.

Why did Moody’s downgrade Sony again just one month after a previous downgrade? Continue reading

Was Your Business Damaged by Hurricane Sandy? Here’s Help…

Photo of hurricane damage at Thunderball MarketingMuch has been written about the impact of Hurricane Sandy on the entire East Coast of the United States – particularly in the coastal areas of the New York/New Jersey/Connecticut metropolitan areas. Homes were damaged and destroyed with press reports indicating that thousands of families were displaced. FEMA is sending in temporary homes to house these displaced families.

But other than gas stations dealing with fuel and power shortages, much less has been written on the impact on businesses throughout the area. Certainly, the Jersey Shore had a huge impact – especially on businesses centered on or near the boardwalk at the shore. But as we recently wrote about, other businesses throughout the area – including some CE-related businesses – were also impacted.

Here are some key facts about Federal disaster assistance… Continue reading

Savant Picks SESales for Southeastern States Reps

Savant logoSavant Systems, LLC has selected Southeastern Sales Associates, Inc. (SESales) as their sales representatives for the southeastern region. Focusing on the custom integration business, SESales will represent the home automation brand to those installers and dealers in the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee.

Learn more about this new appointment here… Continue reading

Sandy Thrashes Thunderball Marketing

Photo of Hurricane DamageThunderball Marketing, Inc., an Avenel, NJ-based distributor of consumer electronics and pro-DJ equipment was hit hard by hurricane Sandy last week, with facilities losing power and two co-located warehouses subjected to a shocking level of water damage. Thunderball’s Alan Henslovitz told strata-GEE.com that his rough estimate is that the company has been hit with somewhere between $10-$15 million in losses based on destroyed & damaged inventory and lost business.

Learn more about the impact of Sandy on Thunderball Marketing below…

Continue reading

Consumer Reports Picks Top Ten Electronics of 2012; Their Choices May Surprise You

Consumer Reports LogoConsumer Reports, that venerable organization known for torture testing products, ranking their results, and offering advice to consumers on how to pick the right product for them, announced on Thursday their picks for the Top Ten Electronics products for 2012. The list of their picks will appear in the December issue which is its Annual Electronics Issue.

The company said it tested over 600 products for their December issue, but “only ten standout products made the short list for performance and innovation.”

What electronics did they pick? See more below… Continue reading

Consumer Confidence Rises Again; Now at 4-Year High

Photo of consumer shoppingLooking for more “green shoots” of economic recovery? The Conference Board released the latest data from their Consumer Confidence Index showing another monthly increase (it increased in September as well) in the overall level of confidence that consumers have in the economy. The Index’s reading for October was 72.2, a significant uptick from September’s level of 68.4, which was up over August.

Still not sure this is a positive indicator? See more below… Continue reading

Can Sharp Survive? Company’s Performance ‘Raises Serious Doubts About [Our Ability] to Continue’

Photo of Sharp booth at CESLast week, we reported on a rumor out of Japan that Sharp Corp. was about to report a dismal interim net loss that was much worse than anticipated. This Wednesday, Sharp confirmed those rumors announcing an interim (Apr-Sept) operating loss of ¥168.9 billion ($2.1 billion). This result was after a ¥84.4 billion ($1.1 billion) charge for costs associated with restructuring their struggling business.

But what really has the industry and investors talking is that the company affirmed that it is likely to show a “huge” net loss for the entire fiscal year of ¥450 billion ($5.6 billion), almost double a previous estimate of ¥250 billion. It is also well above analysts’ estimate of a ¥296 billion loss according to a survey of 17 analysts  by Bloomberg. Continue reading