still the greatest computer trade show in the world. I have been there for a couple of years, and i loved each and every minute of it, with a lot of people everywhere, a lot of confusion, but at the same time – a spirit of sharing the technological achievements and sharing the experience. It is a place, where you can learn the people from the informatics industry from all around the world, where you can see whats new in the world of technology will be available on the market tomorrow and the day after tomorrow.
A lot of things were written about the future of the CeBIT, since in the past couple of years the number of the publishers and visitors has been decreased significantly. CeBIT has faced exactly the same problem as a lot of computer shows have faced in the past years – growing cost of the representation for the firms trying to appear there, and a growing price of the tickets, which makes quite expensive – and hence impossible for a lot of companies to send their teams to the show. One very big trade show which has faced exactly the same problem is E3 game show, a lot of big companies have announced last year, that this year they are going to ignore or make a very small presence at the E3 trade show, in favor of publishing their press releases on the net. After that announcements, the organization has decided of changing the format of the show from “open for everyone” to “invitation-only”. They are just optimizing the costs, for concentrating on the essential – the media, who will be invited for publishing the information for the rest of us, grunts. =)
I think that in the next couple of years, the CeBIT will face the same problem and will change their format, concentrating more on the specialists and not on everyone. The words like “Members of the media, retail, development and financial communities” will become the key for describing the attendees.
I believe that in the era of internet and computer technologies all of these shows have their fate decided; but i guess, i am going to miss the spirit of 90s and 200x’s at the CeBIT, which was a quite a fantastic feeling, of being able to talk directly to a lot of firms presenting their products and developers, who knew exactly what software was supposed to do, even if in a lot of cases some firms where sending just marketing personal.
update on 20th of march 2007:
In this PC World article, it was written, that CeBIT 2007 in the first 3 days has got more visitors then at the 2006 edition, but still i attribute this rise to the fact that a lot of stuff was written about CeBIT, and that even a negative marketing still can bring the positive results. Having above 200.000 visitors may be a result for short period of time, cause as long as firms like Apple do not plan to announce products, like iPhone, at CeBIT – there is not much space for growing. Not many firms would wait until CeBIT or any other trade show to present a new product, since the concurrence is always pushing to advance, it is a good option though to play with a technology that was announced before, like if Apple Inc would participate at CeBIT, a lot of people would be more then excited to take a look at the iPhone or a new iPod.
The words, that CeBIT is going to grow are spoken at the same time when it was announced that CeBIT 2008 will run only for seven days (instead of usual 8), and that it is just one of the step of the CeBIT reorganization. For me, it is clear signal, that CeBIT is not having a lot of successes, and that in the next couple of years they need to review the trade show format in order to survive the technological progress.