What's the trend, what's the scoop, what's the big deal at this year's KES 2009 Its refinement, convergence, and energy conservation. It is refinement in that most of the new gadgets are refined, elegant versions of previous technologies with designer-created lines and aesthetic color schemes. It is convergence in that the devices which used to do one thing are now doing more and more things. And it is energy conservation, because the Green Technology ideal is well-represented in these new technological models.
Refinement is a little less exciting than revolution. However, in the electronics industry companies claim to have revolutions every six months. According to marketing hype, the world is turned on its head at least twice a year, sometimes thrice. However, if you step away from the marketing hype you notice something else - that while things are generally the same as they were last year, they look a whole lot better. That functional and yet plain phone of yesteryear is replaced by something to match the designer bag it is destined to be held in. The kimchi refrigerator has glow-in-the-dark jewels for buttons. And the latest laptops sport lines and curves better recognized in works of art.
Convergence is not quite a revolution either, but it is a silent change in the way we live. The cellular phone has become an essential part of anyone's life. It is the first thing many people hear in the morning, because it wakes them up. And it is the last thing that many people look at in the evening, as they talk to their friends after hours. It has already been taking up the roles of camera, web browser, and ATM, and at this year's KES 2009 it is also taking up the mantle of GPS and global mapping device. In response, cameras are also taking up the GPS space, using GPS technology to automatically identify where they are in the world when they take a picture. They can add this meta-data to each photo, leaving customers with more information about their lives than they have ever needed before.
Energy conservation is the other big topic at this year's KES 2009. Green technology, that elusive power-saving, environmentally-friendly gadget, is all over the place at this year's expo. Almost every device takes power conservation to a whole new level. From tiny little LEDs on a chip that can produce the brightness of yesterday's filament bulbs, to washing machines that use less power to wash better, to vehicle control systems that frugally dole out battery power and increase fuel efficiency - all of these are designed to lessen the workload of energy necessary to do the same thing.
As one wanders around the aisles of KES 2009 this year, one can be able to see that the electronics industry is in its third stage of evolution. In the same way that the auto industry went from functional, to powerful, to elegance, so is the electronics industry. The refined, elegant gadget that does everything one could possibly want is here at the Korea Electronics Show 2009. One just has to walk around to find it!