The Gadget Show
is a British Television series which focuses on new consumer technology.
The show, which is broadcast on Chanel 5 and is currently presented by Craig Charles, Otis Deley, Jon Bentley, & Georgie Barratt.
The Gadget Show has received many Guinness World Records.
Jon Bentley ( 2004-12, 2013 the present )
The show previews and reviews the latest gadgets, and broadcasts the latest technology news. The show is aimed at giving the mass consumer an insight into the gadget world and in addition, it aims to give enough information for the more “geeky” or knowledgeable audience, but still making it accessible to the more casual viewer. The show has featured Blu-ray Discs, Video Camera’s & MP3 players Internet multi media tablets and other technologies. A segment showing viewers how to get the most out of their technology is also often included along with a competition to win anything from £5,000 to £45,000 worth of new gadgets. Each series usually contains a special episode focusing on a particular technology conference or expo, Past conferences include Cebit & the NextFest.
2007–2010: Studio and time increase
Series 5 saw a slight tweak in the format, with the three presenters hosting from a studio base, although a lot of the show still takes place outside of the studio. The studio sections were filmed at the custard factory on Gibb Street in Digbeth,Birmingham, England. This was until a new set was introduced and the studio was then moved to inside The Gadget Show’s offices located inside North One Television in Digbeth. A recurring theme in the updated format is a regular challenge between Jason and Suzi (and occasionally Jon and / or Ortis), typically set around particular gadget(s) and their testing or use based around it. Another addition is that now the week’s main featured gadget(s), typically reviewed by Jon, is given a ‘G rating’ from one to five. The seventh series, which started on 29 October 2007, saw the programme promoted to a 20:00 start time (previously 19:15), and running increased from forty-five minutes to one hour.
From series 8, there is also a new “Top 5” feature which consists of the Top 5 gadgets in a certain category. At the start of the eleventh series, a new item was introduced, called the “Wall of Fame” where Ortis or Suzi and Jason pick their favourite gadget from a particular category that they think changed the face of modern gadgetry, and then Jon picks the one to win and go up on the wall. There are also several other recurring features (such as aforementioned “Top 5”, and ‘The Focus Group’ – testing products with various groups of people, who vote for their best one) which are featured in episodes on a semi-regular basis.
The show also offers a competition, (answering a multiple choice question, by phone, SMS or postal entry) that gives the winner on some occasions up to 250 prizes.
For 2010, the programme received a rebrand centred on the Museo typeface. This included refreshed titles and break bumpers. Also in 2010, the show saw the release of a supporting magazine called ‘The Gadget Show Magazine’. Despite advocating HD content and reviewing high definition television sets, cameras and other devices, the show continued to be produced and broadcast in standard definition, being upscaled on the Channel 5 HD simulcast channel. It would take until the World Tour series for the show to begin broadcasting in native HD.
In August 2011, it was announced a new series of The Gadget Show would be shown on Fridays. However, from 26 September 2011, the show reverted to Mondays, due to strong competition on Friday nights.
2012–2013: World Tour revamp
In February 2012, it was announced that the 17th series of the show would be in a new, revamped format. It was called The Gadget Show: World Tour, and it started airing on 23 April 2012. The new version of the show saw presenters Jason Bradbury and Pollyanna Woodward travelling the world to test the latest gadgets and partake in a number of challenges. The reception of the show from fans, after the first few broadcasts were generally negative, questioning Jon, Ortis and Suzi’s drop from the show.
The 18th series, under the name The All New Gadget Show, began airing on 5 November 2012. It followed the same format as the previous series known as The Gadget Show: World Tour.Guests in this series included musical-comedy group Jonny & The Baptists as well as popular YouTube star Ali-A .Two specials aired in Spring 2013, a ‘future’ special and a ‘Bank Holiday’ special.
2013–2016: Back to origins, presenter changes
For the 19th series, Jason Bradbury & Pollyanna Woodward were joined by Countdown co-presenter Rachel Riley and former Gadget Show presenter Jon Bentley who re-joined the show as chief gadget tester. It was announced that The Gadget Show would return to its more traditional format, with a new studio. On 30 January 2014, it was announced that Ortis Deley would be returning to the show, replacing Pollyanna Woodward On 25 April 2014, it was announced that Rachel Riley would be leaving the show and would be replaced by Olympic skeleton gold medallist, Amy Williams.
From the 24th series, in-studio presenter links were scrapped; now, the filmed inserts are linked by graphics and countdown clips with voiceover from Bradbury, Deley, Williams and Bentley. A new logo and graphics were introduced. New features included profiles of YouTube creators and vloggers and a section called Gadget Help where viewers of the show can get tech help to solve their problems. For the 25th series, the show returned to a Friday night slot for the first time since 2011.
2017–present: Presenter changes, Gadget Show Live axed, and revamp
At the end of the 26th series of The Gadget Show, it was announced that Bradbury had decided to quit the show after 12 years. A day later, it was confirmed that Amy Williams will also leave in 2017. Furthermore, it was also announced that The Gadget Show Live had been axed in 2017 in favour of a new technology show taking place at Westfield London. The 27th series will see the show have a revamp. Channel 5 were keeping quiet as to what will happen in the new series.
On 17 February 2017, it was announced that Craig Charles and Georgie Barrat would replace Amy Williams and Jason Bradbury for the upcoming 27th series and would host alongside Ortis Deley and Jon Bentley. It was also announced that the show would return to a studio base in Birmingham and would air from March 2017 for 12 episodes. The new Gadget Show logo teaser was released on the official Facebook page on 14 February 2017.
During the challenge section of The Gadget Show, the team is sometimes asked to set new Guinness World Records. So far, they have set records for:
- The fastest speed reached by a slot car racer achieved by Dallas Campbell while filming for The Gadget Show.
- The fastest speed reached by an internal combustion powered radio-controlled model car is 137.86 km/h (85.66 mph), controlled by Jason Bradbury (UK) on the set of The Gadget Show in Stratford-upon-Avon, UK, on 29 October 2008.
- The fastest speed in a water jet–powered car is 26.8 km/h (16.65 mph) and was achieved by Jason Bradbury (UK) on the set of The Gadget Show at Wattisham Airfield, Ipswich, UK, on 15 March 2010.
- The longest ramp jump performed by a remote controlled model car is 26.18 m achieved by an HPI Vorza, controlled by Jason Bradbury (UK) on the set of The Gadget Show in Birmingham, UK, on 25 March 2010.(Since been beaten by Thomas Strobel, Germany on 30 July 2011. Setting a distance of 36.9 m.)
- The largest game of Tetris measured at 105.79 m² and was played on The Gadget Show in Birmingham, UK on 15 September 2010.
- The heaviest machine moved using a brain control interface weighs 56.2 tonnes (61.95 tons), as demonstrated on the set of The Gadget Show, Studley (UK) on 17 March 2011.
- The fastest speed attained on a jet-powered street luge is 115.83 mph (186.41 km/h), achieved by Jason Bradbury (UK) on the set of The Gadget Show’s 200th episode in Bentwaters Parks, Suffolk, UK, on 9 August 2011.
- The longest loop-de-loop performed by a radio-controlled car at a diameter of 2.3 m.
Gadget Show Live
The Gadget Show Live was an exhibition that showcases the latest in technology from different sectors. It takes place annually at the Birmingham National Exhibition Centre, and allows visitors the chance to test and buy the latest technology in the market.
The show encompasses a variety of different features which in the past have included Battlefield Live, Robo Challenge Arena, Toy Arena, Game Zone, Future Tech Zone, Photographic Stage and The HUB. The show’s most infamous feature is the Super Theatre, an exclusive hour-long interactive theatre show hosted by the presenters.
In 2013, the show took place 3–7 April, in 2014 it took place 9–13 April, in 2015 it took place 7–12 April and in 2016 it took place between 31 March and 3 April.
In 2017, the show was dropped by organisers Upper Street Events in favour of a new event at Westfield London.