Another year, another IFA. Although 2007 did not quite match the excitement of last year's show that saw the launch of the HD DVD format, it was still a good 'un and offered more than enough shiny new toys to keep us running around Messe Berlin like tech-crazed headless chickens. So to speak.
My picks from the show, in no particular order, highlight the always-on connectivity we crave, both via home networking and on-the-go, the lowering cost of technology and some cutting-edge tech that makes this gadget world we live and work in so dang fascinating…
Loewe Connect range of LCD televisions
Connect isn't just a clever name for Loewe's forthcoming LCDs. The super-stylish offerings will be able to hook up to your wired or wireless home network and offer options to connect with iPods, PSPs, mobile phones, camcorders, cameras and USB devices. If only all tech-connections were so all encompassing.
Toshiba HD-EP30 HD DVD player
While the next-gen format war rumbles on, Tosh is hitting Blu-ray where is hurts – right in the wallet. This new entry-level player from the HD DVD stalwart offers full 1080p HD and 24 fps playback. It'll only cost you 349 euros (around £235) and you know it'll do what it says on the tin.
Casio's concept camera
Casio's Exilim range in my humble is one of the unsung cheap digi-cam ranges out there, so the prospect of a beefed up version makes me quite excited. What I also like about this chunky camera/camcorder concept is that they're not reaching for the skies with the megapixel offering (it's an all-you-need-anyway 6MP) but focusing dev efforts on speed and performance.
Mio C620 and C620t 3D PNDs
GPS is one of the greatest inventions of the 21st century. Period. Improving on GPS is like making chocolate yummier, but that's what Mio has appeared to have done with their 3D MioMap software. It's not new new – 3D mapping has been around in the Far East for yonks but it's exciting to see it come to Europe, even in limited form.
This device is quite niche, and there will be detractors that say this is about as useful as a Palm Foleo, sorry, chocolate tea-pot, but for anyone who literally lives online like I do, the prospect of eat-as-much-as-you-like internet for £180 for the hardware and then £5.99 a month in a truly pocketable format is exciting. The good news from seeing the device first hand at IFA is that this baby seems to be as fast as they claim.