What to expect from Europe's biggest technology show

As the end of summer approaches, IFA opens in Berlin. From phones to appliances, CNET predicts what will happen.

Kent German Former senior managing editor / features
Kent was a senior managing editor at CNET News. A veteran of CNET since 2003, he reviewed the first iPhone and worked in both the London and San Francisco offices. When not working, he's planning his next vacation, walking his dog or watching planes land at the airport (yes, really).
Rich Brown Former Senior Editorial Director - Home and Wellness
Rich was the editorial lead for CNET's Home and Wellness sections, based in Louisville, Kentucky. Before moving to Louisville in 2013, Rich ran CNET's desktop computer review section for 10 years in New York City. He has worked as a tech journalist since 1994, covering everything from 3D printing to Z-Wave smart locks.
Expertise Smart home | Windows PCs | Cooking (sometimes) | Woodworking tools (getting there...)
Kent German
Rich Brown
3 min read
Andrew Hoyle/CNET

In between gawping over the new Samsung Galaxy Note 8 and waiting for Apple to invite us to the unveiling for its new iPhone(s), CNET heads to Berlin this week for the biggest, oldest and oddest technology show in Europe.


Miss IFA enjoys technology, the color red and smiling.

Messe Berlin

First held in 1924 as the "Berlin Radio Show," IFA (or Internationale Funkausstellung) is your one-stop window shopping destination for not just technology like phones , TVs , laptops and cameras. It also crams in appliances of all sorts, smart home gadgets and even robots. That means you can swipe through the latest phone and peer into a posh refrigerator that will track how much milk you have left. Add in an official mascot called Miss IFA and you get a show to remember that even the public can attend.

To help you keep track of it all, CNET editors from San Francisco, London and Louisville, Kentucky land in Berlin today to bring you the latest and greatest products on display. All it takes is a little currywurst and a lot of pretzels to keep us on the go.

What we expect to see

This is by no means a comprehensive list of what IFA will bring, but it does cover the products we're most excited to see.

Samsung: Given that our friends just announced the Galaxy Note 8, don't expect a new phone in Berlin. Instead, Samsung should follow its plan from the last couple of IFAs by introducing a new smartwatch (our euros are on a follow-up to the Gear S3), another high concept appliance (like 2015's Addwash washing machine) and a tablet or two. 

Great gadgets from the world's weirdest technology show

See all photos

LG: Samsung's cross-Seoul rival should unveil the V30. The successor to last year's V20, we expect it to have an edge-to-edge screen, dual rear cameras, a fingerprint scanner and support for USB Type-C. We'll also be looking for more information about the Hub robot LG showed off at CES earlier this year.

Sony: Phones and home audio are Sony's typical IFA mainstays. Last year, for example, it gave us the Sony Xperia XZ and the MDR-100x headphones. Look for additions in both of those categories -- we'll know for sure when we get to Berlin.

Acer: At IFA 2016 Acer introduced the massive (17 pounds), powerful and insanely expensive ($9,000) Predator 21x gaming laptop. Could the company go even bigger in 2017? Probably not, but expect laptops, Chromebooks and various other combinations of screens and keyboards.

Lenovo/Motorola: A highlight of last year's IFA was Hasselblad True Zoom, a Moto Mod designed for phones like the Moto Z Play that added optical zoom for the camera. Rumor has it that Moto will follow up with another phone this week. On the Lenovo side, look for laptops along the lines of the Yoga 910, which the company announced last year.


IFA is more than just press conferences. 

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Events we'll be watching

Like any trade show, IFA is packed with press conferences. Here are the events we'll attend; watch for related news as they transpire. (All listed times are in Berlin time; here's a handy calculator to convert them to your time zone.) You'll find all the news on our IFA roundup page.

Wednesday, August 30

  • Acer: 10:30 a.m.
  • Asus: 1 p.m.
  • Panasonic: 3 p.m.
  • Samsung: 6 p.m.

Thursday, August 31

  • LG: 9 a.m.
  • Sony: 1 p.m.
  • AEG/Electrolux: 1 p.m.
  • Toshiba: 3 p.m.
  • Sharp: 3 p.m.
  • DJI: 5 p.m.
  • Lenovo/Motorola: 8 p.m.

How to follow CNET's IFA team

To follow all IFA news, and get a picture of what it's like to be in Berlin, follow these folks on Twitter.

Follow @CNET The best of everything at IFA
Follow @CNET_es The best of everything at IFA in Spanish
Follow @rh_brown Rich Brown, Executive Editor
Follow @AshleeEats Ashlee Clark-Thompson, Senior Associate Editor
Follow @katiecollins Katie Collins, Reporter
Follow @jongarnham Jonathan Garnham, Video Producer
Follow @kentgerman Kent German, Senior Managing Editor
Follow @Batteryhq Andrew Hoyle, Senior Editor
Follow @tylerlizenby Tyler Lizenby, Multimedia Producer
Follow @cesarsalza César Salza, CNET en Español
Follow @sharatibken Shara Tibken, Senior Reporter
Follow @rich_trenholm Rich Trenholm, Senior Editor
Follow @meganwollerton Megan Wollerton, Senior Associate Editor