5 weird and wonderful finds at IFA

Great oddities from the Berlin tech show

Among the big TVs, audio sound systems and general consumer electric garb, IFA 2009 proved to be a breeding ground for the more 'interesting' gadget.

Don't expect too many of these to find their way to your living rooms soon, but here's our pick of the five weird and wonderful gadgets that featured at IFA this year.

1. Philips his'n'hers Sensual Massagers


Philips has done well so far being one of the only major CE manufacturers in the world that isn't afraid to utter the 'S' word, but it might struggle a bit with its latest sexually charged endeavour - his'n'hers sensual massagers.

Beneath the suggestive advertising and implied nods to what its latest massagers can do, the company essentially announced at this year's IFA that it will begin trying to sell sex toys to blokes.

So be prepared to hear the words "you want to put what, where?" screamed up and down your street very soon.

Then again, if you don't know the difference between an erogenous zone and the Congestion zone, then it might be time to give Philips' massagers a whirl. Just don't get the two mixed up!

Weird or wonderful? Weird. Well, if your mates ask that's the answer you'll probably give.

2. Bling My Thing

bling my thing

If there's one thing Apple gets right, it's design. Why on Earth, then, would you want to mess up the sleek and shiny look of your iPhone with a little help from Bling My Thing?

And what is Bling My Thing, we hear you cry? Well, essentially it's a service that adds a whole heap of crystal-like gems to an iPod or any other device you require to be Chav-ified.

TechRadar has to give the company credit, as it did have the sparkliest booth of any manufacturer at IFA, but the whole concept was lost on us.

Maybe it was their Tim Westwood-esque slogan ("Made with a 100% love and respect") that put us off blinging up our iPhones. Or it might be the fact that we're so conscious of messing up our gadgets that we like to keep the see-through scratch-cover on for as long as possible.

Weird or wonderful? Weird, unless you say "innit?" a lot.

3. Massage Professional

Massage pro

No it's not another Philips' special, but the ultimate massage chair that's made in Germany, apparently.

When TechRadar rocked up to the Massage Professional stand, we thought we had entered some sort of journalist morgue, as there were a multitude of weary journos lying on the machines, covered in blankets gently vibrating their aches and pains away.

While they did look comfy, the main problem HHP (the company who makes the chairs) has is if you Google Massage Professional using Google.de, the first non-sponsored link will transport you to a completely different sort of 'massage professional'.

A possible name re-jig may be in order before the Massage Professional hits the big-time.

Weird or wonderful? Weird, especially when using Google.de to track the gadget down.

4. T-Mobile Video Wall

t mobile wall

Of all the stands that were at IFA this year – and our tired legs can attest that there were many – T-Mobile's was the most impressive.

At the core of the telco's IFA exhibition was a massive interactive, touchscreen video wall.

Not so much a gadget, more a visual experience, the wall is like Windows Surface, where you can use your hands to move pictures, change their size and so on.

The technology behind it is fairly simple: a projector, LEDs, a big slab of Plexi glass, a computer and some sort of webcam.

While it's not the first time T-Mobile has showed of its interactive wall – it was also at last year's CeBit – it's still an exceptional crowd-pleaser.

Weird or wonderful? Wonderful to watch, even better to interact with.

5. Gorenje's iPod fridge

groenje fridge

Slovenia isn't that well known for its consumer electronics, so it comes as a surprise that Slovenian company Gorenje has come up with something that's both brilliant and a little bit barmy.

Showed off at IFA this year was a fridge which comes with its very own iPod dock. Okay, so Gorenje actually unveiled a prototype of the fridge at last year's show, but the company is insistent that the food-holder will launch sometime in the near future, due to "immense interest" surrounding it. Because of this, a new 'finalised' version of the fridge was present at the stand.

Does anybody really need an iPod-Ready fridge? No, but any gadget which laughs in the face of the economic downturn is okay by us. That and the fact it packs wireless connectivity – which is something that makes our collective geek hearts go all a-flutter.

Weird or wonderful? Wonderful – the best kitchen gadget you don't need but really, really want.

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