Archive for April 3rd, 2009

My two cents on Photoshow 2009.

Friday, April 3rd, 2009 by Giuseppe Piersantelli

Photoshow - Photo and Digital Imaging

Compared with other events like CES and CEBIT, Photoshow (Milan, 27-30 March 2009) is a quite small show with a limited number of exhibitors and attendees. Nevertheless, it is still the most important digital imaging event in Italy. PMA finished just some weeks ago, so I didn’t expect to discover unreleased models at Photoshow.
Generally speaking, Photoshow was a further confirmation of some technological trends that have been often discussed on this blog. In particular:
  • still picture / motion picture convergence: just to mention one, the new Canon Eos 500D can shoot 15 MP pictures and full HD movies as well
  • high speed shooting: Ricoh presented its 120 fps digital camera (Ricoh CX1)
  • more sensitive digital sensors: 3200 and 6400 ISO with low noise are becoming a standard feature in compact and bridge digital cameras, while some DSLR are now available with even higher ISO values.

What was missing?

No connectivity. As I was expecting, no Wi-Fi enabled models will be available for the Italian market in the next weeks. The lack of a widespread, free wireless network is probably slowing down the adoption and the success of Wi-Fi cameras which, as stated by a Sony representative, “don’t make sense to wirelessly transfer pictures to your computer when you are at home”. And I completely agree with him.

Few services. Photoshow is a good event to see and touch a lot of exotic hardware but it’s not the right place to speak in terms of services and applications. Unfortunately, it seems that manufacturers are not willing to work together with other players in order to design and develop integrated services. But I am pretty sure that there’s still space to build up a digital imaging ecosystem with the collaboration of many different players.

Il Sole 24 Ore has published a complete coverage of the event.

Internet 2020 The Internet with Things – Part 4

Friday, April 3rd, 2009 by Roberto Saracco

The experience in shops is an engaging one and it is getting better and better. It has been a one way street for the retailers. The alternative was to disappear as people would have bought on line. Many products have basically disappeared from shops, since they are now mostly acquired on line. Only those retailers that have managed to provide an engaging experience survived. Bookstores, music and video stores, pharmacies, travel agencies, camera stores, white goods stores… have shrunk dramatically. The whole retail is now significantly reshaped, wholesalers from Hong Kong have the same opportunity of selling goods to me as the department store at the other side of my town.

This transformation has reshaped the buying experience of customers like myself. I am now going to shop in the brick and mortar world expecting to have fun, to meet people, to get personalised “concierge” service.

As I step in the shop I am recognised as a VIP customer (any customer willing to share part of his data to get a fidelity card becomes a VIP) and that means that as I get closer to the racks of dresses tiny LEDs light up to indicate those dresses that would fit my size, with some colour coding to signal special discount, just for me. I could have chosen to go directly to a dressing room and being recognised; I would see myself in a mirror-like screen presenting a choice of dresses to try on, virtually. Knowing my size a computer can easily do the trick of dressing my image reflected by the screen. I like one and, better playing safe, I’ll have a clerk getting me the real thing.

As I tried it out, the mirror reflects my image and starts proposing me some accessories. Some of them are not sold at this store but are offered by other merchants. My image becomes a mash ups to advertise products. Anything that I would click through, by touching the mirror, would probably generate some sort of revenue to this shop.