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Fritz Sennheiser, Joe Clayton Are Among Consumer Electronics Innovators Honored by CEA

Linder said the cell phone — 'a radio you could take with you' — would have been successful if only 100,000 had used it.

The founder of Sennheiser and the former CEO of Sirius Satellite Radio are two of the newest members of the Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame.

The new members, inducted in a ceremony in Las Vegas this week, are Jewel and David Abt, founders of Abt Electronics; Joe Clayton, chairman, former president and CEO of Sirius Satellite Radio; Dean Dunlavey, an attorney who argued the Sony Betamax case before the Supreme Court; Hans Fantel, founding editor of Stereo Review and a New York Times columnist; and Eddy Hartenstein, founder and chairman of DirecTV.

Also Ken Kutaragi, lead developer of the Sony PlayStation gaming console; Warren Lieberfarb, who helped to broker a DVD format while president of Warner Home Video; Dr. Fritz Sennheiser, founder of Sennheiser; Richard L. Sharp, former chairman and CEO of Circuit City; and Martin Cooper and Donald Linder, developers of the first cellular phone.

Clayton, a former CEA chair as well as Sirius executive, said, “The success of our products is driven by one constituency, the consumer, not government mandates.”

Daniel Sennheiser accepted the award for his grandfather, who is 96 and was unable to travel from Germany.

According to a CEA summary of the event, Linder commented about the first cellular phone: “We saw the advantage of having a radio that you could take with you, not one that was bolted in your car. Our marketing people thought it would be successful if 100,000 people used it, today 3-1/2 billion people in the world have cell phones.”