Audio News for July 26, 2011

by | Jul 26, 2011 | Audio News | 0 comments

iPad to Dominate Automation and E-Commerce – A Gartner Report claims that Apple’s iconic iPad will take center stage in the automation sector. It claims that half of all major automation vendors will have applications specifically for the iPad by 2016, and existing as well as new applications will be fully used on the tablet, vs. partial functionality.  65% of vendors expect to extend 25% of their functionality to the iPad, with marketing resource management using it for reviews and approvals processes. Other tablet makers are struggling to knock Apple off the top spot.

CEA Semiannual Industry Forecast – The electronics industry will have stronger than anticipated growth this year according to the study released by the Consumer Electronics Association. Overall shipment revenues are estimated to pass $190 billion – a 5.6% growth rate – with tablet PCs, smartphones and e-readers driving the sales. An analyst pointed out that one year ago tablets were a new unproven market, and now they – along with other mobile connected devices – are leading the entire industry. 88% of U.S. households now own at least one digital TV and an estimated 10.4 million network-enabled TVs will ship to dealers this year. As 3D becomes a standard feature in displays an estimated 3.6 million 3DTVs will ship in 2011. Consumers continue to upgrade their home theater experience, with audio sales rebounding this year. Soundbars lead the way, with 2.4 million units expected to ship in 2011. In-vehicle technology is doing well, with systems in new vehicles resulting in double-digit growth.

CDs in Cars Are the New 8-Track
– It’s now almost impossible to find a car head end that plays both audiocassettes and CDs, as the optical disc drove out the tape format. However, now CD players are beginning to follow a similar path. Ford and other automakers are embracing all-digital systems with increased connectivity for iPods and other mobile digital music players. CD changers are becoming a thing of the past, and both USB jacks and Bluetooth technology are becoming standard equipment on car stereos. SiriusXM satellite radio and even Internet casts are being offered on more vehicles as well, both by automakers and as after-market installations.

Retrevo HDTV Model Decoder Site – The consumer shopping site Retrevo has launched its HDTV Model Decoder which offers a free service designed to help TV shoppers compare product families across a brand, and different brands, to make better purchasing decisions. The service also gives shoppers a guide to stores carrying unique model numbers, such as Costco, Best Buy and Sam’s Club. The site explains what’s behind the groups of letters and numbers, unlocking their meanings. Users will be able to understand the differences between HDTVs from major makers such as Sony, LG, Samsung, Panasonic and Vizio. 

The HDSLR Revolution
– Hi-def consumer-level digital SLRs – ostensibly still cameras – have made their way into major movie and TV production, making it easier and much more affordable for amateur and semi-pros to get professional-looking results on the big screens. It started with courageous amateurs shooting shorts and even features on cheap digital cameras that originally only shot one minute of video at 30 frames.  They are now standard equipment on many shows and movies, including Secretariat, Slumdog Millionaire, 127 Hours, and the TV series House – which season finale was shot entirely on the Canon EOS 5D Mark II. The software revolution has made it possible for rapid infiltration of the technology into the motion picture world. There are some glitches to be dealt with: Some HDSLR sensors have more pixels than HD requires and images have to be scaled down without causing artifacts. Other concerns are the autofocus, remote control limitations, lack of timecode and genlock, lack of 4K resolution, rolling-shutter challenges and other features that would make such cameras ideal for motion picture use. The problem is their engineering has been focused mainly on the needs of the still photography world. Meanwhile, professional digital cameras designed especially for motion pictures, such as the popular Red, are being used on more and more feature films and TV.

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