IFA Next 2019 to focus on Japanese innovation as society becomes Super Smart

posted on Monday, 29th April 2019 by Steve May

Smart home  Smart Building  IFA 2019  IFA GPC 2019 

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IFA Next, the start-up platform within the annual Berlin IFA show, has announced its first global country partner, Japan. Always a curated start-up event, organisers hope that the country focus will add new energy to the IFA Next experience.

One of the supporters of the initiative is Panasonic. Speaking at the IFA Global Press Conference, Genichiro Shimada, Director for the Cross Value Innovation Project External Relations Department, at Panasonic (pictured below), declared that society was in a state of flux. “We are transforming to Society 5.0,” he said. “Society 3.0 was about mass production, while Society 4.0 was about information. 5.0 is the Super Smart society, where real and virtual worlds come together.”

Genichiro SHIMADA, Director For The Cross Value Innovation Project External Relations Department , Panasonic Corporation

Shimada-san says Panasonic is embracing a start-up culture. “We want to innovate.” He said that in Silicon Valley the corporation has launched Panasonic Beta, and cites break-out projects like the Panasonic House at SXSW, and its Future Living smart city projects in Berlin’s Adlershof district, which comprises a complex of 69 smart home apartments plus office space, and Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town (FSSS), built on the grounds of an old Panasonic factory.

Speaker at the IFA GPC announcement, Takashi Sato, Managing Director of Japanese start-up Unipos, revealed how the company was using a unique point rewards system between employees, delivered by social media, to improve productivity and positivity.

Keita Nishiyama, Director-General, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau, METI (pictured top with Dr. Christian Göke, CEO, Messe Berlin), says Japan’s involvement in IFA Next will centre around the development of a new human interface, one that challenges the status quo. By way of illustration, he offered a bento box as inspiration. We can’t wait to see what’s next!

Steve May

Inside CI Editor Steve May is a freelance technology journalist, who also writes for T3, TechRadar, Home Cinema Choice and ERT (amongst others).

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