Showcasing the world of digital living

Paul Hammond

The 27th Hong Kong Electronics Fair (Autumn Edition), taking place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre from next Saturday to the following Tuesday and organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, will showcase the increasing range of products available on the market and reflect upcoming trends and how they will affect peoples' lives.

Wireless is the hottest topic this year and it is illustrated by many of the products being displayed at the fair, including those of Hong Kong exhibitor Ality.

The company will be showing its latest patented product - the Wi-Fi digital photo frame Pixxa.

The product can send and receive photos around the world and display news flashes and weather reports.

It can also be set to synchronise with Google Calendar and personal schedules, and alert users of important dates with relevant pictures, so it is both functional and decorative.

Pixxa can also communicate with online accounts such as Flickr, Picasa and AlityOnline, and has features such as alarm clock, photo libraries, and music and video storage.

'The design concept of the frame is to replace the home PC. It is a standalone product that is easy to use. You can receive photos and whatever important information you need on the display unit,' founder and chief executive William Wong Yee-lai said.

Mr Wong said that the Hong Kong Electronics Fair (Autumn Edition), the second largest of its kind in the world, attracted buyers from many different sectors.

'People who want more unusual products can come to us and I think it's a good platform to meet a different customer base either on the technology, retailer or distributor side,' Mr Wong said.

Mr Wong said that the fair was suitable for everyone in the industry, not just manufacturers, due to the enormous growth of the electronics industry in the mainland and the immense business opportunities available.

The professional surveillance market is also going wireless. Exhibitor TeleEye Holdings will display its latest hi-tech closed-circuit television (CCTV) and video surveillance cameras at the fair. The company started in 1994 as TeleEye Group, a spin-off from City University of Hong Kong by a group of engineering researchers, and it was listed on the stock market in 2001.

The company's latest camera can record up to 60 per cent longer digital footage than conventional models, is designed for a harsher environment and provides general packet radio services backup.

The product is aimed at clients ranging from alarm centres, bank and construction sites, logistics companies, public utilities, property management businesses and retailers.

Chief marketing officer Wallace Ma Chi-kit said: 'Video surveillance is a rapidly emerging market sector and we have a lot of room to grow worldwide. One way of achieving our targeted business growth is to expand our distribution channels through co-operation with new security and IT product distributors and resellers.'

Dr Ma said the fair was an important platform for his company to achieve that goal because of its international profile. The company had been exhibiting at the annual event since 1996.

'The HKEIA Award for Outstanding Innovation and Technology Products being held during the fair is also a good platform that can draw public awareness to the work of innovative designers and manufacturers in the industry,' Dr Ma said.

TeleEye won two awards in the security category last year for its products.

Dr Ma said the internet had helped transform the security industry, with CCTV and video surveillance no longer solely used for surveillance.

'In addition to the security requirements, many of the TeleEye systems in the field are being used for operational and facility management,' Dr Ma said.

He expected good business again this year with the launch of the company's mobile surveillance solutions.

Dragontech Corporation develops network solutions and is targeting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and home users, especially those who run their own blog sites. Sales and marketing manager Edwin Lui Kin-man said: 'We can provide solutions so that even when [bloggers'] computers are not on others may access their blogs, photos and data.

'What these users need are simple, easy-to-use systems because they do not have IT personnel. The need for a simple but multipurpose networking device is growing.'

Mr Lui said the company was not looking to meet end users at the fair. 'Our objective is to meet with overseas companies who serve home users and SMEs in their respective local markets. We can form partnerships and our company can provide the hardware we have developed.'

The company will promote its fast all-in-one mini network-attached storage server ioBox-200. It serves as a storage, server and multimedia solution, and can double as a home entertainment system. The company showed an earlier version of this product at last year's fair, but its speed has since been upgraded from 400 megaHertz to 500MHz.

This is the fourth time that Dragontech is attending the fair and each year has been successful. The company is looking to further expand its overseas markets this year. Dragontech's headquarters is in the Hong Kong Science Park and has a manufacturing base in the Pearl River Delta region.

Additional reporting by Reggie Ho