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TEAMS forecast on the top-5 “most anticipated & unanticipated trends“ or the upcoming IFA show 2019 — Illustration by TEAMS

IFA 2019 TEAMS trend forecast

Here’s our very personal compilation on the “5 most anticipated & unanticipated trends” from a designers’ perspective for the upcoming show!

The 2019 IFA will hit the grounds in Berlin this Friday, so we’ve compiled our very own “most anticipated & unanticipated TEAMS trend forecast.” Things we expect to see — Things we would love to see — And things we honestly do not want to see again, but probably won’t have a chance to avoid anyway…

Let’s start with the cool stuff:

Not such a long time ago, faster always meant better. But Maybe things, in general, have become too fast-paced recently? Time to re-consider, step back and admire the magic of simply turning things on. BANG & OLUFSEN Beovision Harmony, LG Signature Roll-Up amongst others really start to celebrate their technology with beautiful, calm and eye-catching KINEMATIC MOVEMENTS, hailing the prelude to an amount never seen before. It reminds us of the good old glory of tube amplifiers, a time when everything seemed less hectic. Lovin’ it!

LG SIGNATURE OLED TV — Beautiful, calm and eye-catching kinematic movements

In the premium entertainment sector, currently nothing else seems to be more popular than to disguise your beloved hi-tech as a (simple) PIECE OF ART or PIECE OF FURNITURE: LG signature Roll-Up, BANG & OLUFSEN Beosound Edge, BOWER & WILKINS Formation Suite, YAMAHA Relit, or the SONY Symphonic Light Speaker, just to name a few, really show off by not showing off any technology. Very Smart, their designs sometimes not timeless though….

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Edge — Sculptural & object fashion

Aren’t they willing to adapt or simply surrender to today’s state-of-art technology, or what else is wrong with the „Best Ager”? It seems they are heavily addressed by more and more start-ups and established companies with some very customer-centric solutions that truly focus on the necessities and behaviors of the 60+ alone. BEAFON, KÄRCHER, METZ, PANASONIC, and GN HEARING, for example, are companies to look at. This is an intermediate trend, of course, and it will be interesting to see how long it will last.

SAMSUNG Galaxy Fold & LG Signature TV Roll-Up, HUAWEI Mate X — Those are close to market introduction. It will be interesting to see how the other big players will either avoid this topic or try to showcase their potential of foldable displays on the show. Funny wise, the expected new “freedom of UX design“ did not really work for most users. It seems misunderstandings in use but also susceptibility to contamination required several design revisions and often delayed the release.

Huawei Mate20X — Foldable displays on the show

Not long ago, a decent smartwatch meant you bought it either from SONY, SAMSUNG, LG or APPLE. And it had the looks of errr… …a sporty chronometer, a classic Bauhaus masterpiece, a fashionable pop watch, or whatever you configured out of it. Nowadays you can simply run to your favorite fashion brand an connect with the real thing: ARMANI, DIESEL, FOSSIL, MICHAEL KORS, SKAGEN are all on stage and it’s very likely there is much more to come in the future.

Michael Kors Smartwatch — Fashion brands conquer smartwatches

Most companies have already started focussing on recycling or otherwise harvesting the raw materials inside of electronics to avoid further pollution through electronic scrap. Nevertheless, besides looking much more „homelike“ and textile recently, we believe tech giants cannot avoid the topic of true sustainable body housings much longer. Avoiding or at least properly recycling plastics will become a high priority. This is a personal trend we believe should and will gain momentum soon.

Here are some other topics we’ll reflect during our show-walks:

7. Black and Gold
8. Natural Interfaces
9. Omnidirectional Sounds
10. Blend of Kitchen and Living/Dining Room
11. 8K Resolutions

…And the unavoidable pains:

Since I started visiting the IFA over 10 years ago, we always made a betting if there would be ANY OTHER COLOR besides the known B/S/R/W schemes (Black/Silver/Red/White) on display. TITANIUM and COPPER hues were the „X“ for the last years, but besides NESPRESSO, it looks as if most of the other brands rather prefer to stay on the safer side of color expressions. Let’s see if there are only disappointments in color again this year…

Oh yeah, holy voice control… The most aspired trend for the last years will definitely be omni-audible again and hopefully, the systems including voice control will also be less flawless in their performance. Shocking to see how often voice commands did not work. It feels so much better to simply touch a physical switch instead: Works instantly and you do not even have to raise your voice. But maybe that’s a parental thing: having kids at home, you’re probably pretty much fed up with non-working voice control already. Let’s see if the latest CONVERSATIONAL UI’s will finally bring peace in our homes…

Whether their smartness is limited by point 2 (above) or the awkwardness of the interaction, in our opinion, the smart speaker will not survive in the long term and will soon be replaced by true personal smart assistants triggered with your ear pods as HMI and integrated and communicating through your mobile phone’s system. If you don’t believe us, just watch the movie „her“.

Let's see what else we discover…

This trend forecast was written by Kai Gehrmann, Creative Director & Strategic Growth at TEAMS Design Hamburg.

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TEAMS is one of the world’s leading design agencies. TEAMS is not just a name — it’s our attitude!

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