SEOUL, KOREA --- On October 12 to 15 of this year is the 42nd Korea Electronics Show (KES). The convergence between hardware and software is the theme of the year, and in order to answer the question of how the IT industry will improve the quality of our lives you need to be at the KES.
Match made in HeavenThere will be over 100 firms present at this year's show, making it the best place to be for early adopters. Francis Kang, the director of the Korea Electronics Association, said, "Before, the electronics industry was based on putting various parts together to produce a complete product. This, however, has changed. Now the trend is to put together the completed products and information technology. The smart revolution has revolutionized the industry's paradigm." He went on to say that the KES is going to be the control tower in this venture of putting together the completed products. This show is the scene of the crime, crime being convergence solutions.
One thing that this KES will show is that the terms hardware and software are becoming obsolete. There is less and less distinction between them. For instance, hardware will be developed based on advances in software, rather than the other way around as it has been in the past. The intense collaboration between hardware and software will bring about amazing innovation. Attendees to the event this year will be able to experience this new wave in IT firsthand.
Software developers have been the truly busy ones this year. They are the ones bringing new innovations to the game. That means completely new hardware devices will be more rare at the show, but the applications of existing hardware will thrive. There are companies specializing in embedded technology, virtual reality, applications, 3D, mobile, and u-cloud technology signing up to set up kiosks. Applications will be the main focus, with over 24 companies setting up over 200 booths. There have been so many that the KEA is considering setting up a separate partition for the apps, called the App World.
KES will also be the site for conferences and talks on future government ministry IT policies. The Ministry of Defense, for example, will be investigating the possibility of hiring firms to install IT systems on their ships. Another ministry , the Ministry of Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, will be all about the possible IT solutions to the problems of growing cabbage.
These conferences and meetings will also give companies insights into potential new products, allowing them to create more and better IT solutions that the government might require in the future. The spark of innovation is communication, and if there's one great place to communicate about IT in Korea, it is the KES.
But it's not just a show, it's also a marketplace for R&D suppliers. That includes universities, research firms and research institutes. Korea is a country with a long history of technology manufacturing and development. You can see the epicenter of that at the KES this year. Buyers will be especially happy, because this is the place where they can find all the latest and greatest IT. Organizers expect about 2,000 of these happy buyers, and also approximately 50,000 visitors from the public. Finally, distributors from India, Russia, Canada, Japan, China and Indonesia are expected to attend as well.
There is no need to worry about the lack of visual effects. Even though the emphasis is on software, the flash and dazzle will be as thick as ever. Software drives the hardware, after all, so newer software means that there will be hardware realizations of software development on display.
The KES may be comparatively smaller in size than the IFA or CES. The IFA, which is centered on tools and deals, hosts nearly 1,423 companies involved. CES in Las Vegas is a more value chain-oriented expo and regularly hosts more than 120,000 attendees. Another contemporary of the KES is Japan's CEATEC which boasts the most advanced technological displays. The KES has never been competing for size with the larger foreign electronics expos. The KES has always striven, however, to be the expo where people wanted to be. While the KES has always entertained attendees through the various kiosk displays and aesthetic designs, the highlight has to be the opening ceremony - a 40 year old tradition. Korean Wave stars are always performing on stage in order to promote the best that Korean electronics has to offer.
Haier looks through KES
China's largest electronics company Haier is digging for internal IT small businesses to become a business technology partner. Haier had announced through the Korea Electronics Association (KEA) that they will start recruiting internal IT firms that are interested in business cooperation with their company. They will search for candidates through KEA by the end of this month, and will have individual meetings and negotiations regarding the partnership at this October's KES.
As an overall appliance company, Haier wants to cooperate with many parts of the IT area. They showed interest in no-glasses 3D technology and flexible displays, appstore platforms, and 3D touchscreen applications. High resolution video transmission using multiple screens and graph awareness technology were also included.
In the home appliance area, they are interested in technology that can reduce energy and water consumption, air cleaning technology, and noise reduction technology. They are also interested in companies owing mobile Internet solutions and smart home solutions.
A representative of Haier Korea said, "The recruiting of cooperation partners is directly operated from our China headquarters, and there was no limit on the number of companies to choose. We will choose promising and competitive companies and to make a win-win opportunity."
Haier was previously interested in Korean IT companies. Last April they had 60 1 on 1 meetings with 60 companies through KOTRA. The partnership recruitment through KEA was also enthusiastically proposed by Haier, and by showing specific technologies that they were interested in, it showed their high expectations in Korea IT.
Haier made it clear that rather than just product purchases, they were interested in finding partners and technology that could build the company's strategic product family for the next couple of years. They concluded that with Korea's IT and Haier's producing power and brand image they could produce synergy.
Francis Kang said that "Haier is a good company for Korea's small businesses to cooperate with. Not only does Haier have production facilities, but it also has a distribution network that spreads all over China. As much as Haier is interested in Korea's IT, it is also a chance for companies to make a soft landing in China."
Haier is the number 1 Chinese overall appliance company that occupies 6.1% of the world's white goods. They operate in over 160 countries spanning from China, North America, Europe, Mideast, Asia, to Africa.