IFA 2017 Preview: What to expect from this year’s Berlin tech bash
It’s that time again! IFA 2017 is nearly here, so we’ve rounded up everything you need to know about Berlin’s annual technology trade show, including all the latest news, press conference schedules, rumours, and predictions.
(Update: July 12, 2017): Acer has announced the time and date for its IFA 2017 press conference. You’ll find that information and more below.
Every September, gadget giants, tech journalists, and industry onlookers from around the world gather in Berlin to check out the latest tech. The IFA trade show – or Internationale Funkausstellung Berlin, for those in the know – is a hotbed of consumer tech goodness, and hosts consumer tech product launches aplenty.
As expected, the show is back again this year, with many major firms like Samsung, Sony, and LG expected to attend and show off what they’ve been cooking up over the last few months.
Scroll down for our preview of IFA 2017, or read on for key details of this year’s event.
IFA 2017 Dates: When is this year’s IFA Berlin convention?
This year, the IFA Berlin tradeshow is running from September 1 to September 6 at the Messe Berlin. That’s about the usual time for the convention, so no surprises there.
However, we should note that many of the major announcement will come before those dates. Typically, major brands like Samsung and Sony showcase their latest wares just before the show starts.
As such, expect a number of product launches on August 30 and August 31 – all of which will be reported live from the ground right here, so bookmark this page now.
Related: Galaxy Note 8
IFA 2017: Press conference schedule
We’ll be updating this section with the latest information on major press conference times and dates, some of which have already broken cover.
Acer Press Conference: Wednesday, August 30 – 10:30 local time | 11:30 London time
Sony Press Conference: Thursday, August 31 – 13:00 local time | 12:00 London time
Lenovo Press Conference: Thursday, August 31 – 20:00 local time | 21:00 London time
Now, here’s everything we know so far about what some of the world’s biggest consumer technology brands have up their sleeve for IFA 2017.
Samsung at IFA 2017: What to expect
Samsung had already launched the (ill-fated) Galaxy Note 7 by August last year, so had nothing to show at IFA in terms of smartphones.
This year, we’re similarly expecting Samsung to have revealed the Galaxy Note 8 by the time IFA 2017 gets underway. However, there has been some talk that the phone will be reserved for Samsung’s IFA 2017 press conference, so we’d recommend taking all estimates with caution for now.
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What else might Samsung show off? Well, a new smartwatch seems the likeliest bet, with the Gear S4 the most probable device to land. We’ll probably see various smart home devices on show, too, alongside plenty of white goods.
Related: Best TVs
Sony at IFA 2017: What to expect
Unlike Samsung, Sony actually had some smartphones to show off last year. Specifically, the company debuted the Xperia XZ and Xperia X Compact. However, we were unimpressed with both – especially given how lacklustre they seemed compared to the then-new Samsung Galaxy S7.
Sony also used last year’s tradeshow to debut a new Walkman, some Signature Series headphones, and a new 4K HDR projector that cost an incredible £9,000.
At IFA 2017, we’re expecting Sony to debut its next round of Xperia smartphones. Although the company has already released a raft of flagship smartphones this year, the company still presses on with its bafflingly frequent six-monthly launch cycle.
Don’t count out other announcements in sectors like cameras, speakers, and headphones, either – the company went early with its IFA 2017 presser invite, so it’s likely to have some big things in store.
LG at IFA 2017: What to expect
The highlight of the company’s product roster was probably the space-age LG Smart Instaview Door-in-Door Refrigerator, which featured a 21.5-inch touchscreen. Because obviously.
However, it is entirely possible that LG might showcased its long-rumoured LG V30 to the public. Current speculation suggests the phone will ditch the second screen the phone series has become known for, and instead opt for one large OLED display.
Related: Best Android phones
Huawei at IFA 2017: What to expect
This year, Huawei will probably make some smartphone announcements – the Mate 10 and some mid-rangers, we’d expect – as well as add to its roster of wearables and tablets.
HTC at IFA 2017: What to expect
Given the fact that HTC has already launched the HTC U11 this year, as well as a number of other HTC U-stamped phones, we’re expecting HTC to sideline handsets at IFA 2017.
Instead, expect plenty more announcements on Vive – and possibly even the unveiling of the eagerly anticipated Vive mobile headset, which has been rumoured for a while now.
Related: Best VR headsets
Asus at IFA 2017: What to expect
Continuing its trend of IFA wearable launches, Asus used the 2016 iteration of the Berlin tradeshow to shed light on the Asus ZenWatch 3 smartwatch. The company added three buttons to design, and included a powerful new Qualcomm chipset to boot.
For IFA 2017, Asus will almost certainly showcase a new ZenFone – and probably a new ZenWatch as well. However, much of the company’s stand will likely be occupied by the usual enthusiast-focused Republic Of Gaming (ROG) PC gaming gear.
Related: Best gaming PC
Lenovo at IFA 2017: What to expect
Lenovo benefits from being able to release products under its own name, as well as through the Motorola subsidiary.
From Lenovo proper, we’re probably going to see some notebook and/or hybrid devices. And from Motorola, we may see the Moto Z2 flagship smartphone – assuming it doesn’t launch beforehand, as expected. Alternatively, we could see some budget or mid-range devices.
Apple at IFA 2017: What to expect
Many of you will be aware of this already, but Apple never turns up to IFA. Even though Apple has been announcing mobile devices in September for years, the company prefers to host its own product launch events independently from any trade shows, so the best you’re going to get is a slew of third-party manufacturers telling you why they make the best Apple accessories.
Related: iPhone 8
Tell us your predictions for IFA 2017 in the comments below.