It seems someone decided that CES 2017 was the perfect venue to steal ideas, as the Epsilon Electronics booth, located in the North Hall among other automotive vendors, was robbed of seven products during the event last week, include two concept ones that were gaining a lot of attention.
Epsilon Electronics is a corporate umbrella for a number of brands, including Soundstream, Power Acoustik, Precision Power, Farenheit, and NESA. Paul Goldberg, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, says he feels that the targeting of the prototypes suggests "that the purpose is to copy our hard work and compromise our investment in product development. Whoever is to blame represents the very lowest level of integrity in our business and must be stopped."
Of the seven units stolen, the most valuable was the Soundstream VRN-DD7HB dual-screen source unit, which has two operating systems that run at the same time on two different screens, allowing the user to operate in two different platforms. Users can control the system using the upper display, or Android PhoneLink, which mirrors the screen of the enabled smart device. The second OS includes features like DVD, Bluetooth Connectivity, audio/video media, media playback by USB, FM receiver, rear view camera, and more. It is set to be released to the public in March.
"We are taking this situation very seriously," adds Goldberg. "We are working closely with local authorities and Las Vegas Convention Center staff to make sure the perpetrators are brought to justice."
Epsilon is offering a reward of US$10,000 for information leading to the capture and conviction of those involved.
It's a shame to think that someone in the industry believes the best way to forge ahead in a product category is to blatantly steal the ideas, research, and development of a rival. So much for innovation, at least for one thief.