What’s in Store at IFA 2012?

The IFA show is one of Europe’s largest consumer electronics trade shows, and this Friday, the 2012 event starts in Berlin. Last year, it played host to new products from Sony – the Tablet S and Tablet P – Samsung, who bought the Galaxy Note and the Galaxy Tab 7.7, and HTC introduced the Radar and Titan Windows Phone 7 handsets.

As you can see, it’s definitely a place for big announcements, so what has everyone got in store for us this year?

Before the Show…

Sony has already held its press conference, and at the time of writing, Samsung is a few hours away from doing the same, despite the show not officially beginning until Friday. This is a common tactic to ensure new products don’t get lost in the melee, and the press pays the requisite amount of attention.

At its hour-long event, Sony revealed three new smartphones – the Xperia T, Xperia V and Xperia J, plus a rebranded and upgraded tablet called the Xperia Tablet S. These joined a tablet/laptop hybrid named the Windows 8 Vaio Duo 11, and the Vaio Tap 20, a large desktop PC with an unusual lay-flat configuration, making it look like a massive tablet.

Samsung is expected to follow-on from last year’s hit, the Galaxy Note, with its sequel, the Galaxy Note 2, and will also show off its Windows 8 tablets. It’s single pre-show announcement is the Galaxy Player 5.8, a media player based on the Galaxy S III smartphone, but with a huge 5.8-inch touchscreen.

The first Windows Phone 8 devices from Samsung will probably have to wait though, as we doubt Microsoft will let them get the jump on Nokia.

LG has been busy too. It has so far revealed the Optimus L9 and the Optimus G, the latter of which is the first smartphone to use Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon S4 Pro chip.

Asus took the covers off two Windows 8 machines, the Vivo Tab and the Vivo Tab RT. Both are members of its Transformer range, meaning the tablet screen detaches from the keyboard dock.

August 30 Events…

Samsung has scheduled a second show for Thursday, but it’s doubtful there will be much mobile related news, then it’s Lenovo in the early afternoon. Lenovo is expected to focus on tablets, including a tablet/smartphone hybrid along the same lines as the Samsung Galaxy Note.

LG rounds out the day’s activity, but we don’t know how many other mobile products will be announced, but we can expect spec confirmation and release dates for the Optimus G and Optimus L9. An upgraded Optimus Vu has been rumoured, as has the Optimus Vu: II, so perhaps they’ll make an appearance too.

During the Show…

Let’s start with who isn’t going to be there. Apple, obviously, has its own plans for later in September, and Motorola has sent out invitations for its own special event on 18 September, so they won’t be doing much either.

Nokia is also doing its own thing, and will possibly be unveiling its Windows Phone 8 devices during its fragmented Nokia World event on September 5.

HTC have been quiet, and don’t seem to have a press conference scheduled, although a new tablet, dubbed the Flyer 2, has been leaked this week, along with new phones including the Desire X (AKA the HTC Proto).

ZTE could bring its Blade III, which was leaked last week, while its main competitor Huawei could have a 10-inch tablet version of its quad-core D-Quad Android smartphone. It could even give us a release date for the phone too!

Plus, there will be all sorts of surprises, from a host of Windows 8 tablets to Samsung’s transparent screens and more besides.

We’ll be bringing you the news as it happens, and closing out each day with a round-up of the top tech from the show.

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