This week, we’re off to the Consumer Electronics Show for the second consecutive year to check out the new toys, technologies, gadgets and trends. As many of you know, this is the largest trade show in North America, and the challenge is to figure out a way to simply take it all in.
One of the "newest" trends is actually a tip of the hat to retro. As The New York Times recently reported, a number of electronics manufacturers are packaging their gadgets in very familiar, throwback shapes and styles.
Part of the reason why is that given all the sleek gadgetry that seems to come out on a daily basis, comfortable forms to Baby Boomers (and even their parents) might help sell products. In the same way that sports franchises market throwback jerseys, these new/old gadgets look vintage but act modern.
Thus, a “turntable” that actually converts vinyl to MP3s (others include iPod docks as well as CD and/or cassette players and recorders) has been a big hit for Crosley Radio.
And even that retro red telephone handset that screams “Western Electric” is actually a Bluetooth device for your mobile phone that works in the conventional way – you hear on one end, and speak into the other, just like you would with a standard phone.
Any retro radios this year?
Well, you can bet that if we run across any cool radios, we’ll tell you about it. In a world of sleek Apple devices, a sea of tablets, eReaders, and 3D, it is interesting to take note the success of devices that are designed to look very “old school.”
Our reports start on Thursday from CES, and you can read them right here on our blog or follow them in real-time on Twitter @fnjacobs and @pauljacobsmedia. And as part if its CES coverage, Inside Radio will be including our perspective on the impact of consumer electronics innovations and technologies on radio, so you can follow our exploits there, too.
See you at the CES.