2010 Hong Kong Electronics Fair

Where can you find sunshine bags, USB vinyl turntables and digital microscope cameras? Hong Kong!

Tags: DesktopsEco-friendlyEgyptHong KongHong Kong Trade Development CouncilUnited Arab Emirates
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2010 Hong Kong Electronics Fair The 2010 Spring edition of the Hong Kong Electronics Fair took place from April 13th to 16th. (ITP Images)
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By  Vineetha Menon Published  April 19, 2010

Every year, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council hosts what it calls 'the world's biggest electronics fair'.

In terms of numbers, it certainly is Asia's largest, with the October edition of the Hong Kong Electronics Fair last year attracting nearly 56,000 visitors while the younger April edition saw 50,000 interested buyers, exhibitors and industry professionals walking around the halls of the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

I recently attended the 2010 Spring edition of the show, which took place from April 13th to 16th, and got a taste of Asia's drive for innovation.

The Fair crammed in more than 2,200 worldwide exhibitors showing off audio-visual products, in-vehicle electronics, gaming and imaging devices, eco-friendly devices, personal electronics, smartphones, accessories and more. While some of the local exhibitors were keen on focusing only on the Asian market, there were more than a few looking at breaking international ground. That makes sense. After all, electronics was Hong Kong's biggest export market last year, having exported more than $169 billion in products around the world, including the Middle East where the United Arab Emirates is now considered to be the 17th largest electronics export market for the country.

But keeping the stats aside, here's my selection of products at the Fair that made me want to click, tap and connect.

Tune in and groove to the Ryoma

There are thousands of DVD players and radio receivers and CD players out there. But how about one that combines it all? JVC Kenwood's ‘Ryoma' device acts as a HD digital TV tuner, a DVD/CD/Blu-ray player and recorder, and a radio receiver as well. This all-in-one product is set to hit the Japanese market later this year but I can't wait for an international release. I'm sure there'll be copycats announced soon enough since it reflects the future of consumer electronics - convergence.

USB digital microscope camera

Ever wanted to take microscopic images of the hair on your arms? Or of a dead fly? (I know, me too!) Well, the lovely guys at Zhuhai Witson in China have come up with a 2MP handheld USB microscope camera that can magnify anywhere between 20x to 400x depending on the display size. According to Freeman Fan, security products division manager at the firm, the device stands out because of its built-in software that has a micro measurement and skin analysis tool, making it ideal for science, education and engineering purposes. The device costs about $40 each, and while there are already distributors in place in both Europe and America, the Middle East hasn't got in on the microscopic USB camera action just yet...

Vinyl MP3 Transformer

I love it when the old becomes new. If you place your old vinyl record on a Lenco USB turntable, you can directly record the music (MP3 format) on to a flash drive or SD card. And, yes, I'm aware that not many people own vinyl records these days but for those that do, and want to take the bold leap into the 21st century, this device from Lenco is the answer to your prayers. The best bit? They are sold in stores right here in the UAE - check out Sharaf DG and Emax!

Pierre Cardin's tablet PC

Perfect for the brand-conscious, the Pierre Cardin multi-touch tablet PCs operates Windows 7 with WiFi, Bluetooth as well as 3G connectivity features. The tablets come in a handy case, which embeds a keyboard on one of its internal sleeves so you don't have to surrender completely to the touchscreen. According to Sam, the head of overseas marketing and sales at China-based Shenzhen Vogue, the company is licensed to use the Pierre Cardin brand name and logo on electronic products including GPS navigation systems, telephones and tablet PCs. The products are sold across Europe, Asia and America with the 7" tablet PC now costing about $290 and the 8.9" model setting you back $320. Here in the Middle East, Hawash Group in Egypt already sells Pierre Cardin GPS systems, and Sam revealed that the firm will probably start selling the branded tablet PCs in the local market later this year.

Sunshine bags

Solar-panel bags are absolutely perfect for the Middle East where the sun loves to shine almost every day of the year. Hong Kong-based Mascotte Industrial Associates Ltd. manufactures is keen on global retailers for their bags, and I personally can't wait to see their messenger bag designs here in the Middle East. All their bags include solar panels that are capable of charging devices that have a mini-USB connector. The panel provides a minimum of 0.5 watts for each hour of full sunlight, which might not seem very practical if your laptop is totally out of juice but is definitely a great way to stay in power while you're rushing to get to the boardroom.

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