Archive | Consumer electronics

Giving Voice to Smart Electronics

One of the biggest topics of conversation at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was the prominence of voice assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Assistant, Apple’s Siri, Samsung’s Bixby, Roku’s Entertainment Assistant, and Microsoft’s Cortana. Not only are such voice assistants associated with smart speakers (e.g., Amazon’s Echo or Google’s Home), which […]

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Out of Sight

Licensors continue to show interest in utilitarian product categories that at one time would not have been considered for licensing. One example: electronics and computer components such as memory cards and graphics processing units (GPUs), as well as batteries. These items have been attracting the attention of entertainment/character licensors of late: This month, Disney/Lucasfilm and […]

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Flying High

Sales of drones in the U.S. more than doubled in 2016, according to the NPD Group, with sales of higher-end products (retailing for $300 and up) growing the fastest in terms of dollar revenue and consumer-level models (priced from $50 to $100) seeing unit sales spike during the holiday season. The latter accounted for 42% […]

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Checking the Time

The fashion watch category has been experiencing some significant challenges, thanks in large part to the fact that smartphones have replaced wristwatches as many consumers’ primary tool for keeping track of time. In one illustration of the issues facing the industry, exports of watches from Switzerland—the source of many higher-end, fashion-driven watches—declined 10% in February […]

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Connected Clothing

At recent electronics and fashion trade shows such as the Consumer Electronics Show, Fashion Tech Berlin, and the Decoded Fashion Summit, smart clothing made its mark. Fabric featuring interwoven conductive wires or embedded nanotechnology allows jackets, intimates, or t–shirts to accommodate basic phone- or Internet-based communication and information access. It enables clothing to measure biometrics […]

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A Call for Licensed Handsets

Are mobile handsets the next consumer electronics sector to be headed away from manufacturing and toward a licensing model? Last September, shortly after discontinuing its own manufacturing operations to focus on software development, Blackberry licensed its brand to BB Merah Putih, which is sourcing, distributing, and marketing Blackberry devices in Indonesia, the brand’s strongest market. […]

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An Ear for Music

Key players in the headphone industry have been experiencing some upheaval in the past few months, thanks to bankruptcies, mergers, and lawsuits: SMS Audio, rapper 50 Cent’s company, filed for bankruptcy in April and shut down in August. Its licensed and signature products included gear for Reebok; Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars; and 50 Cent. […]

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