The last time I was at the Hammerstein Ballroom (311 West 34th Street, Manhattan) was to see quasi-fictitious metal band Dethklok, but now it is host to consumer electronics and fine wine. Conducted by tech exhibitor Pepcom, Wine, Dine, and Demo at the Hammerstein featured both tech giants like Sony along with burgeoning startups from around the globe.
Of course with Black Friday looming over us like a tsunami wave of Walmart shoppers, the show was geared towards the sort of electronics you’d want to get for that special someone. There were the expected electronics on showcase for the seasons like pristine Samsung televisions and Sony Playstation 3’s, but there were a few more interesting and innovative devices. The Koubachi, developed in Zurich, is a device that can monitor outdoor and indoor plants and uses Wi-Fi to send live data to your email or smart phone on what kind of care you plant needs (more sunlight, less sunlight, fertilizer, etc).
The TV antenna, which lives on in minds as a pair of gnarled bunny ears that exist only to confound us all, has been replaced by the Mohu. The Mohu is a tiny black box that screws into your TV’s RF input and is the highest selling antennae on Amazon. Compact to the point of being nearly invisible, the Mohu allows for any TV to pick up HDTV broadcasts.
Of course not every exhibitor dealt with physical electronics. Cozi had on display their new Dinner Decider app which gathers a week’s worth of dinners from a database, then depending on what ingredients you prefer and what dinners you did or did not enjoy it better tailors the selections of meals to your taste.
Decide, the online shopping price comparison site, has a mobile app version of its site that can compare electronics in stores, much to the consternation of big-box store employees. Meanwhile ShopRunner consolidates online stores into one easy to navigate website and is introducing a new function where you can order an item online and pick it up at any ShopRunner associated retailer near you.
Along with the fine electronics, Wine, Dine, and Demo featured a selection of Argentinian wines and food while Flamenco dancers were peppered around the premise, making it one of the more eclectic tech events I’ve been to. Overall, Wine, Dine, and Demo did a good job focusing on home electronics with a wide array of applications. Often times these tech events feel a bit more stuffy or distant, but Wine Dine and Demo was definitely focused firmly on the domestic world and made the whole event feel tighter for it.
To learn more, go to: http://www.pepcom.com/
311 West 34th Street
Manhattan, NY 10001