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Ingram Micro Showcase, Belkin and the Internet of Things

31 Jul 13

Last week I went to the Auckland Ingram Micro Showcase, which also took place in Wellington and Christchurch.

If you are an IT Reseller or buyer, you should have attended. Here’s why:

• At such events, you will see the latest technology offered by the major IT brands, much of it before it hits the stores. I saw some cool things from a personal perspective and for business.

• You can meet and talk to product managers and brand representatives and ask tricky questions. Make yourself known to them, they do business when you do business. Many of the customers of a large distie are faceless and nameless and if you don’t let them know you are out there championing their brands, how are they going to help you get business?

• Seminars. I didn’t attend any, because I didn’t have time :( I have a major project happening in Westfield Malls throughout New Zealand for the school holidays, the epic Augmented Reality Treasure Hunt.

• Network with your peers. It’s always great to catch up with other people in the industry, see old friends and make new ones. I have a number of new people to connect to on LinkedIn. You never know where a new business opportunity might come from.

• Prizes. I didn’t win any this time.

• It’s free and so is the parking, well at least it was in Auckland.

• Free massage and loads of other freebies if you’re into that, or into waiting. I didn’t stand in line for a free Oki T-shirt or any of the other gimmies, didn’t have time, but it all adds to the fun.

• The public and school kids aren’t invited, so you’re not being pushed around by kids who are chasing the goodies and will never actually be customers.

So what did I get excited about?

The Belkin WeMo Products. I’ve blogged a lot about the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart homes. It’s great to see products that you can install yourself and connect to your home network and to your mobile smartphone.

There are many more WeMo products coming and apparently some are already in-store at retailers like PB Technologies.

They said they were also bringing in smartphone controlled door locks and other smarthome devices, all of which will be controllable through the smartphone. I love this stuff!

Withings is a brand I hadn’t heard of before. They had a pile of cool technology including a iOS connected blood pressure cuff, something I have also blogged about before in eMedicine.

They also had a set of scales that connect to an iPhone app to monitor your body fat etc, I don’t need that one, nor do I need the baby monitor with iPhone app, but back when the kids were little that would have been awesome, especially when they had colds and flu’s.

You can now check if they are sleeping ok, even when you are out and have someone else looking after them, just for reassurance. I understand that Belkin also has a baby monitor coming.

Another product I really liked was a table projecto for the boardroom or planning table. Realistically I don’t think I’d use this, I hardly ever used the expensive whiteboard projector but if I was in planning, civil defence etc, this could be a great device. It was so popular at the show I could hardly get near it. Table Projector

But wait there were more. APC had an electricity smart meter called Ecomind by Clipsal which is on my wish list. It’s a power meter that can tell you your current power consumption in units or in dollars.

We always have debates on whether things like TV’s and PC’s on standby use much power. The service provided by our power supply that lets us look at power usage per day doesn’t help in making smart decisions.

Finally just an indulgence. I have an old Evolution Midi Keyboard, but I’ve lost the drivers. I found a really cool one from iRig which plugs into the iPad and connects to Garageband and other iOS apps. I don’t need it, but I want it.

If someone is looking for a Christmas present for me as a thank you for my great blogs, this, or any one of these things would be welcome :)

Footnote: I do not work for, nor am I a reseller of Ingram Micro.

I have resold their product in different lives and participated in their roadshows in previous lives, such as when I owned and ran Mission Control and the NZ Smartphone and PDA Academy.

I just want to share the goodies in case you don’t get to the showcase, or haven’t decided yet.

By Luigi Cappel -

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