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Happy 100th Birthday, Consumer Technology Business

Celebrating the 100th birthday of the consumer technology industry with the story behind how and why our business came to be and of those responsible for creating it, in five parts:

Part 1: The Wireless Age

Part 2: A National Priority

Part 3: A Pittsburgh Radio Sensation

Part 4: The Birth of a Business

Part 5: “When The Public Is Ready For Mass Demand”

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How the Consumer Technology Industry Was Born

What we now call the consumer technology industry was born November 30, 1920, when the first consumer electronics product, the two-piece RA-DA, the first commercially produced radio designed for the mass market, rolled off the Westinghouse assembly line in East Pittsburgh. After a two-year period of hectic technological, business and legislative/regulatory developments following the end of World War I, the Westinghouse RA-DA and the entire radio industry emerged, becoming the dominant consumer technology product for three decades. On the centennial of our industry, let’s take a look at the events of 1919-1920 that cleared the way for the future.

Part 1: The Day Radio Died

Part 2: How the Consumer Technology Industry Was Almost Never Born

Part 3: How President Wilson Shaped the Airways

Part 4: Happy 100th Birthday To The Consumer Technology Industry

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Hip Hop Legend, iTunes And DSP Developers Inducted Into CTA Hall Of Fame

CTA Hall of Fame, Class of 2022 (from left to right): Mike May, Hank Shocklee, Apple’s Jeff Robbin, Dave Heller and Bill Kinkaid, VAC’s Joseph Akhtarzad, Samsung’s Tim Baxter, TI’s Wanda Gass, and CTA president and CEO Gary Shapiro. (image credit: Stewart Wolpin)

CTA inducted eight new members into its Hall of Fame on November 15, 2022, at a gala dinner in New York City. The class of 2022 includes:

Read the rest of this recap here at TWICE.com.

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Jabra Enhance Plus OTC Hearing Aids: Less Than Expected and Hoped For

So-called “self-fitting” non-prescription over the counter (OTC) hearing aids are becoming available in two form-factors. First, “invisible” models are designed to be heard through and not seen and worn all day. These more traditional hearing aids might include Bluetooth for phone calls, but if they do have Bluetooth, there will be no or poor music playback capabilities. The second OTC type of hearing aid essentially looks and acts like today’s Bluetooth earbuds, which are designed for music and calls but with added medical-grade sound amplification capabilities. These earbud-style OTC hearing aids are designed more for occasional hearing amplification when needed. With its Enhance Plus OTC hearing aids ($799), Jabra, part of GN, which makes ReSound-branded prescription hearing aids, takes the second approach.

Read the rest of this review here at Techlicious.com.

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What To Expect At CES 2023 And This Holiday Season

CES is usually all about innovation. The focus at CES 2023, however, will be on more than just innovation, but innovation with a purpose. At CES Unveiled in New York City on November 16, 2022, CTA president and CEO Gary Shapiro laid out modern rights that CES and consumer technology would address under the Human Security for All rubric, as well as what to expect at CES, and what consumers would buy and want to receive as gifts during the holiday shopping season.

Read the entirety of this report here at TWICE.com.

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Consumer Goods Technology Sales & Marketing Summit coverage

My coverage of the Consumer Goods Technology Sales & Marketing Summit for Consumer Goods Technology.

How DTC Is Shifting Beyond Online Shopping

Combe International: A Case Study In Immersive Transformation

The Art and Science of Loyalty Requires a Happy Marriage With Consumers

How to Get Leadership Buy-In on Emerging Retail Media Opportunities

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Holiday Prep: Don’t Forget The Extended Warranty

“Would you like fries with that?” was often the way selling extended warrantees was described by consumer technology retailers. And for old-style and expensive mechanical devices such as CD/DVD players and VCRs, buying an extended warranty made perfect sense to consumers – assuming the consumer trusted the issuer of the warranty.

Read the rest of this report on modern extended warranties here at TWICE.com.

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SmartTechCheck Podcast: OTC Hearing Aids, Starlink, Elon Musk, macOS Ventura, Continuity Camera

I, host Mark Vena, and my fellow tech journalist John Quain take on OTC hearing aids, Starlink, LinkedIn user “experimentation” and macOS Ventura’s Continuity Camera feature on this week’s SmartTechCheck podcast.

Watch the podcast here on YouTube.

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Last Minute Holiday Prep: What Dealers Are Doing Differently This Season

Just like the Grinch discovered, the holidays come no matter what we do. What are retailers doing differently this season to meet their customer’s needs and spread holiday cheer?

Read the rest of this report here at TWICE.com.

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Are Industry Trade Shows Back?

As Covid threats seemingly diminish and society returns to some semblance of “normal,” the question for industry folks is – to paraphrase The Clash – should you stay or should you go…to trade shows?

Read the rest of this report here at TWICE.com.

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OTC Hearing Aids: A New Consumer Tech Product Category Opportunity

What do earbud makers and consumer tech retailers need to know about getting into the OTC hearing aid business?

Read the rest of this report here at TWICE.com.

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OTC Hearing Aids: What You Need to Know

Nearly 40 million American that could and should use hearing aids don’t because of prohibitive pricing and insurance. This week’s FDA pronouncement that hearing aids would now be available to purchase over the counter (OTC) rather than via prescription from an audiologist is already resulting in new lower-priced hearing aid options.

Read the rest of this report here at Techlicious.com.

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