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IFA - Internationale Funkausstellung

Internationale Funkausstellung

The Internationale Funkausstellung (IFA) is the world's largest consumer electronics trade fair and one of Germany's oldest trade shows. An annual event held in September at Berlin's Exhibition Center (Berlin-Messe), it attracts over a thousand exhibitors from around 40 countries and about 225,000 visitors (2006 figures), with over 2.5 billion Euros of orders being placed over the IFA's six days.



The 2007 IFA will take place between August 31 - September 5, 2007.


The 2006 IFA, which took place between September 1 - 6, was divided into six thematic sections:

Television & Entertainment
TV, Video, Home Cinema, Home Solutions, Media
Personal Computing & Games
Hardware, Software,Home Office, Edutainment
Sound & CarMedia
HiFi, HighEnd, CarHiFi, Navigation, Mobile Media
Digital Imaging & Digital Music
Recording, Processing, Distribution, Utilization
Personal Communication
Telecommunications, Broadband, Internet, Mobile Entertainment
Satellite, Networks & Cable
Terrestrial, Satellite, Cable, Digital Broadcast, Networks, Home Security

Highlights are expected to be HDTV, mobile television and internet television.


The IFA began in 1924 as the "Große deutsche Funkausstellung" ("Great German Radio Exhibition") featuring mainly radio-related products. It was held annually until 1939 and was used to showcase many breakthroughs in electronics and media technology. The IFA did not take place between 1940 - 1949. It was revived in 1950 under the title "Funkausstellung" as a bi-annual event rotating between Düsseldorf, Frankfurt am Main and Stuttgart, returning to Berlin in 1970 where it was relaunched under its current name. Although visitor numbers have fallen from the peak of over 500,000 in 1991, beginning with 2005 the IFA has returned to being an annual event.

Past highlights and events

1926 During the third Funkausstellung the Funkturm, one of Berlin's iconic structures, was inaugurated (September 3). This was also the first year with live radio reports from the exhibition.
1928 An experimental television broadcast was demonstrated, with a 30-line picture not much larger than a coin.
1930 Albert Einstein made a live broadcast
1932 The world's first car radio was demonstrated.
1933 The Volksempfänger (VE 301), a Nazi-sponsored radio receiver design, was introduced. 100,000 units were sold during the exhibition.
1935 A fire destroys the exhibition hall at the base of the Funkturm, destroying all the exhibits and damaging the Funkturm's restaurant.
1937 The first colour television was demonstrated.
1939 The first affordable television set (Einheits-Fernseh-Empfänger or E1) was introduced.
1950 The first post-war Funkaustellung was opened in Düsseldorf in West Germany.
1967 Nationwide colour television broadcasts were ceremonially inaugurated by Chancellor Willy Brandt.
1971 The Funkausstellung is renamed "Internationale Funkausstellung" and returns to Berlin.
1973 The first binaural recording of a radio drama was demonstrated.
1975 The first teletext (video text) broadcasts were demonstrated.
1981 Compact Discs (CDs) were shown at the exhibition for the first time.
1983 Television innovations such as video conferencing and digital receivers were demonstrated.
1985 Multi-format TV sets, satellite receivers and the Video Program System (VPS) werde introduced.
1987 Innovations included DAT recorders, large-screen TVs and the Radio Data System (RDS).
1989 Innovations included car telephones and mobile telephones.
1991 At the first post-reunification Funkausstellung Digital Compact Cassettes (DCC), Mini Discs and rewriteable CDs were introduced.
1993 Highlights included laser TVs and video programming technology such as "Show View".
1995 Highlights included the 16:9/PALplus format, TV-/PC combinations and flatscreen TVs
1997 Highlights included digital TV receivers, videophones, DVD players and digital cameras.
1999 Highlights included plasma flatscreen televisions, MP3 players and mobile telephones with Internet access
2001 Highlights included digital terrestrial broadcasting (DVB-T), DVD recorders and GPRS / Bluetooth enabled mobile phones.
2003 Highlights included digital radio, LCD and plasma flatscreen televisions, harddisk video recorders and digital radio.
2005 Highlights included ePaper, mobile phone TV and high-definition television sets (HDTV).