Audio News for September 6, 2005

by | Sep 6, 2005 | Audio News | 0 comments

Portable Audio Sales Soar – According to the latest
Consumer Electronics Association figures for factory sales of audio
equipment, the Portable category has increased as much as 147% over
last year — undoubtedly the result of the iPod and ilk boom. At the
same time the Separates and Systems categories lost heavily.

HD-DVD May Be Delayed – PC World reports that Toshiba plans to
delay the introduction of their HD-DVD HDTV disc format, perhaps to
next year. The Blu-ray camp, however, expects to launch over 100 movie
titles in time for Christmas.

Digital Convergence Also Delayed – The largest European consumer
electronics show, the IFA for short, opens Friday in Berlin. One of the
main topics to be discussed in forums is digital convergence in the
home, and experts are saying true convergence remains elusive. A
Philips spokesperson said the seamless digital home is happening only
gradually and we are still a long ways off from a truly digital
environment. A San Francisco-based firm active in home automation,
Harbor Research, said progress is haphazard and barely perceptible.
Their report characterized current efforts as “a fragmented landscape
full of narrow-point solutions, time-sink gadgetry, entertainment
obsession and software/platform incompatibility.”

Custom Electronics Market Grows
– Sales and revenue growth in the
field is shown by a sizeable increase in membership in the Custom
Electronics Design and Installation Association trade group. Although
the idea of “custom electronics” can scare most people with high costs,
most can be tailored from very simple to complex with a corresponding
price range. It can be only wiring a few rooms for Internet access or
an audio system or it can be as complex as a high end home theater
setup or even a whole house system where lighting, heating, security,
audio and other gadgets are controlled with an electronic touch-screen
“tablet.”  Installers hope that new-home builders will think of
their services at the time they are hiring builders, plumbers, roofers
and electricians. That is the best time to install structured wiring
which brings telephone, cable and Internet access into nearly every
room of the home. The wiring comes out from a central control panel and
is accessed via wall connections in the rooms. Planning ahead for such
tech connections can make a home more attractive, and making a house
more tech-capable increases its value, so it is a sensible investment.
One installer observed, “Everyone wants to spend more time at home;
they’re spending more money on their homes and want these extra
features.  it sounds luxurious, but it’s stuff that’s affordable.”

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