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Japanese companies prepare to unveil new products at the CeBIT tech summit

Japanese companies prepare to unveil new products at the CeBIT tech summit
By Jeremy Wilks
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As Japanese companies prepare to unveil new innovations at the CeBIT tech summit in Hannover next week euronews is given a preview for this special edition of Sci-Tech.

Among the companies in a hub for startup companies creating products destined for the ‘Internet of Things’ is Cerevo.

It is a firm with a wide range of internet-connected devices – including a lamp controlled by voice command, and virtual reality shoes.

“The shoes are the world’s first VR (virtual reality) shoes. Built in are many different types of sensors, and feedback. The motor is inside the shoes. Once we are going to wear these shoes with my foot and walking around the VR world, you can feel the VR world surface – ‘oh, here is a stone, here is wood, here is the snow’ – something like that,” explained Takuma Iwasa, CEO, Cerevo.

“A total of 118 Japanese companies are making their way to Hannover for the CeBIT conference. Many of them will be presenting products which are already on the market here in Japan, but are making their European debut,” euronews correspondent Jeremy Wilks reported from Tokyo.

One of those products is a machine from Epson which can take used paper and recycle it into new blank paper in a matter of minutes. It does not consume any water, although a small amount is used to maintain a certain level of humidity inside the system.

“Let me tell you about the Paperlab. Here is some paper that has been used in the office and has confidential information on it. We put it in the machine, and then it’s transformed into this fibre using our technology, and here our machine is working without water, and then the fibres are bonded and molded, before turning into the final product, which is paper like this,” Shigeo Fujita, Paperlab Project Manager, Epson demonstrated.

The Paperlab means offices can recycle their own paper Epson is marketing it as a useful device for companies that want to permanently erase old documents that bear company secrets.

“Today our clients pay a lot to treat confidential information in order to erase them, while with our machine the client can erase everything straight away on site,“added Shigeo Fujita.

The Japanese will be at CeBIT to showcase their know-how and promote a new concept from the government called ‘Society 5.0’, a vision of an advanced digital world.

Hitachi boss Toshiaki Higashihara, who represents Japanese IT and electronics industries, explained their goals.

“Japan has a strength in physical technology field such as materials, nanotechnology, and sensors. Merging these technologies together, we would like to realize Society 5.0 rapidly, and in so doing help resolve the world’s social issues and expand the concept worldwide.

‘I hope that we can collaborate with people all over the world and create a chance for new innovation.”

Another product making its debut at CeBIT is a tracking system from Hitachi.

The concept is to gather anonymous data on where people walk, in what direction, and how quickly, to help better manage crowds in public spaces.

“It’s a system that uses lasers to carry out monitoring of the movement of people and objects, without them having to wear any particular sensor.

‘Using the results of this monitoring you can carry out research on how people move around.

‘For example these red points show two people, and this point is me, and as I move back you can monitor my tracks, my speed of movement, and generate data,” explained Ichro Ariyama, Chief Architect Flow-Based Object Tracking System, Hitachi.

While many of the new products will sell to corporate and government clients, other innovations are aimed squarely at tech-hungry consumers like a home robot developed by the company, Cerevo.

“It’s a home robot with a projector. He can walk around your home by himself. So, he will be automatically running out from the charging station to your bedroom, every morning at seven am and you can hear the beautiful music.

‘When you wake up the robot can show you automatically the traffic conditions on your bedroom ceiling. That is the future of our product,” said Takuma Iwasa, CEO, Cerevo.