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In The Midst Of Economic Downturn, Macworld SF 2003 Attendance Tops 90,000

MWSF 203 - In The Midst Of Economic Downturn, Macworld SF 2003 Attendance Tops 90,000

by , 1:15 PM EST, January 14th, 2003

Just when there is debate on the efficacy of Macworld Expo as a vehicle for Apple to get the word out on its products, IDG announces record attendance for the event. At the most recent Macworld Expo in San Francisco that was held last week, IDG says that 90,473 people attended the event. We believe that figure to be a record, and are awaiting confirmation from IDG. Attendance at the 2001 show was 87,890, and attendance at 2000 San Francisco show was 85,179.

TMO's observations from the floor were that traffic to the Expo increased throughout the event, which is in contrast to past shows where traffic slackened as the event continued. At this show, the biggest crowds came during the last day of the event. IDG was not able to break the attendance figures down by the day, in part because badge sales are one-time events, and do not register repeat appearances by attendees.

IDG's press release also notes that some 330 vendors exhibited at the Expo, in keeping with booth sales from the last several Macworld Expos. The difference this year was that those vendors had smaller booths across the board, with a few exceptions, making overall floor space smaller than shows in recent years. The pertinent part of IDG's press release:

IDG World Expo, the leading producer of world-class tradeshows, conferences and events for IT markets around the globe, today announced that last week's Macworld Conference & Expo attracted 90,473 attendees to the Moscone Center in San Francisco. More than 330 companies showcased products on the Macworld expo floor, and thousands of conference attendees participated in a wide variety of educational sessions throughout the week. Now in its 19th year, Macworld Conference & Expo is San Francisco's largest annual technology event and the world's most comprehensive Macintosh OS event.

You can read the full press release for information on other events at the show. See our MWSF 2003 Special Report for all of our Macworld coverage.

The Mac Observer Spin:

This is what is technically referred to by the experts as a "kick in the pants." By any measurement you care to apply, MWSF 2003 was a huge, raging, unqualified success. All of the vendors we talked to were delighted with results, as were the attendees we interviewed. Though the floor space was a bit smaller than in past years, the fact that 330 vendors exhibited shows that the Mac market as a whole is strong, even in the face of an economic downturn.

Compare that too shows like Comdex, which this year was a tiny fraction of its glory days both in terms floor space, total exhibitors, and attendance, and Macworld's results are even more compelling.

All this, even while the pinheaded "analysts" are talking about Apple's supposed irrelevancy. Makes you wonder what the analysts are looking at.

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