In Singapore, the Dutch consumer electronics maker Philips is designing a multimedia server to stream audio and video through the air, from the Internet to any device in the home.
In Munich, a former unit of Siemens envisions a cordless phone that would double as a music player, wirelessly drawing music from home computers.
In Japan, members of Sony's global "digital home team" are redesigning 90% of the company's home electronics components to connect wirelessly to the Internet by 2011.
Across the consumer electronics industry, the leading players are revamping their audio and video equipment for a future centered around the Internet, a world in which televisions, stereos, computers -- even kitchen appliances like dishwashers and refrigerators -- can communicate with each other over a wireless home network.
Some industry executives say the new focus on Internet content and wireless networks reflects a fundamental shift in home entertainment.
Expanded lines of "networked entertainment equipment" took center stage this week at the Internationale Funkausstellung in Berlin, the largest consumer electronics convention in Europe, with 1,200 exhibitors and 200,000 visitors.
Sony is introducing plug-in adapters to enable some of its Bravia television sets to connect to the Internet wirelessly. Philips is demonstrating a line of hard-disc stereo systems that can wirelessly read and play music stored on personal computers or laptops in other rooms, streaming music selectively through the house.
Pioneer, Samsung and Sharp are presenting flat-panel TVs that hook up to the Internet, some with wires, some without. Hewlett Packard's MediaSmart LCD TV will wirelessly stream high-definition video.
More at the International Herald Tribune