Audio News for January 13, 2007

by | Jan 13, 2007 | Audio News | 0 comments

More CES Roundup – The Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas closed Thursday night.  One of the hot topics discussed in addresses and workshops was the changing relationship of consumer electronics manufacturers with the content community. Michael Dell, founder and chairman of Dell computers, announced his company’s first home entertainment suite, which includes a hi-def video tuner. Industry leaders from CBS and Cisco also shared their visions of future consumer technology. Cisco CEO John Chambers spoke about “The Human Network” – saying that the connected consumer experience requires complex technology but a simple user experience. Many key partnerships between electronics manufacturers and leading members of the content community – networks, studios, and major record labels – were announced. One of the statistics bandied about was that a new survey shows one in every six households in the U.S. now has HDTV.

Gary Shapiro, president of the Consumer Electronics Association which puts on CES, cautioned in his opening address against putting limits on innovation and technology and urged attendees to support Digital Freedom, the grassroots coalition designed to protect the rights of artists, consumers and innovators to use digital technology and lawfully-required content. [https://digitalfreedom.org]

CEA Industry Forecast
– Shapiro also referred at CES to the new semi-annual industry forecast from the CEA which projects that factory-to-dealer sales of consumer electronics in 2007 will show 7% growth and surpass $155 billion. The 2006 growth of the industry far exceeded the CEA’s original conservative forecast, with 13% growth. The display category continues to fuel growth, with the TV market setting all-time revenue records, driven by the transition to digital television. Another major driver is the MP3 player, accounting for 90% of the $6 billion revenues for the portable entertainment market. In the mobile market, portable navigation devices and GPS units are being purchased by consumers looking for products making auto travel easier and safer. Other major categories are consumers, their accessories, and digital imaging devices, including cameras. The forecast is titled “U.S. Consumer Electronics Sales and Forecasts 2002-2007,” and is published by CEA Market Research each January and July.

All 22 Mozart Operas on DVD – Possibly the largest Mozart AV project ever – comprising 51 hours of music –  has been launched by Decca and Deutsche Grammophon Records.  All of Mozart’s 22 stage works were taped live at the 2006 Salzburg Festival with the finest directors, conductors and singers celebrating the genius of the composer. Up to a dozen cameras were used and each opera was videotaped in hi-def and 5.1 surround sound. The luxurious complete boxed set will comprise 19 DVDs, and each will also have background reports, artist interviews and excerpts from rehearsals. It will be released February 13th.

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