What’s The Future Of Macworld Expo?

  • Posted: 31 December 2008 02:38 PM

    Apple has publicly stated this is the last Macworld Expo in which the company will be a participant. It’s rather odd in this digital age that events such as the annual expo still draw crowds and exhibitors. They are costly events in which to be a product or company exhibitor and they are costly events to attend. The Internet and Apple’s own retail stores are a much more efficient and productive way to reach customers. For event exhibitors other than Apple, is there an economically justifiable reason to commit to the event expense and assign staff to spend their days at the Moscone Center?

    Macworld Expo has perhaps survived because of the star power of Steve Jobs and the fascination the public has with Apple’s fashionable, popular and alluring products.

    Without Apple as a major event participant, is it time for the annual Macworld Expo to fade into the pages of industry history?

    Is there any real prospect of event success for IDG without Apple present and a major keynote address from a top Apple executive to draw crowds and exhibitors?

         
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    Posted: 31 December 2008 02:51 PM #1

    In it’s current form, I would say that MacWorld is a goner. There probably is no reason to have a trade show for the reasons that DT states. However, a key function of these shows is bringing vendors, developers, and users together. Social networking, IMHO, is the main reason why professional society meetings still flourish in the internet age.

    Who knows if IDG will be able to make lemonade out of the lemons they have been served. Apple’s developers conference may emerge as the primary venue for “the social.”

    Regardless, and as said many times before, Apple should get off the MacWorld expectations treadmill so they can announce products and services on their own terms. At this point, uncontrolled hype and FUD are hurting the company - and especially its shareholders.

         
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    Posted: 31 December 2008 02:59 PM #2

    No.
    The Mac products and software are getting face tie on Apple.com.
    The iPhone apps have iTunes.
    The info/training sessions can be recorded ahead of time and posted on iTunes.

    What else is there except for face-to-face networking?  This aspect will be hard to replace via the internet.
    And with Apple not present, I’m not sure how many people will attend to enable that to take place.

    So in a nutshell, I think it is over; like NY/Boston and now Paris.

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  • Posted: 31 December 2008 03:06 PM #3

    I do see WWDC as the practical successor to whatever benefit might have occurred from a social networking standpoint. Why should Apple continue to invest heavily in an event that competes for mindshare with its own annual conference?

    Absent Apple’s presence at the Macworld Expo, WWDC looms larger and gains importance as an annual gathering point for members of the the Mac and iPhone/iPod eco-systems as well as those desiring to attend or at least visit an annual Apple event.

         
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    Posted: 31 December 2008 03:22 PM #4

    DawnTreader - 31 December 2008 07:06 PM

    Absent Apple’s presence at the Macworld Expo, WWDC looms larger and gains importance as an annual gathering point for members of the the Mac and iPhone/iPod eco-systems as well as those desiring to attend or at least visit an annual Apple event.

    Agreed. Apple can conduct WWDC in whatever way it wishes. They can avoid product announcements altogether to avoid the expectations treadmill.

    And if it turns out that MacWorld-type keynote hype and product announcements are central to public interest in Apple, then that can be arranged for WWDC just as easily.

         
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    Posted: 31 December 2008 03:25 PM #5

    DawnTreader - 31 December 2008 07:06 PM

    I do see WWDC as the practical successor to whatever benefit might have occurred from a social networking standpoint. Why should Apple continue to invest heavily in an event that competes for mindshare with its own annual conference?

    Absent Apple’s presence at the Macworld Expo, WWDC looms larger and gains importance as an annual gathering point for members of the the Mac and iPhone/iPod eco-systems as well as those desiring to attend or at least visit an annual Apple event.

    We agree.

    Apple can host their own events quite well. Further, the trade show aspects of Macworld can be held at WWDC just as easily.

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    “Once we roared like lions for liberty; now we bleat like sheep for security! The solution for America’s problem is not in terms of big government, but it is in big men over whom nobody stands in control but God.”  ?Norman Vincent Peale

         
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    Posted: 31 December 2008 05:46 PM #6

    This year I was torn between MW San Fran and CES Las Vegas. Perhaps Apple wants to have the flexibility to exhibit at CES (which is probably NOT going away).  IDG is already moving beyond the straight tech aspects of the show into more performance (music/graphic art) and socializing for this MW. The show will not survive following yesterday’s model, but could survive by serving up training, networking, and fun.

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  • Posted: 31 December 2008 08:18 PM #7

    Play Ultimate - 31 December 2008 07:25 PM
    DawnTreader - 31 December 2008 07:06 PM

    I do see WWDC as the practical successor to whatever benefit might have occurred from a social networking standpoint. Why should Apple continue to invest heavily in an event that competes for mindshare with its own annual conference?

    Absent Apple’s presence at the Macworld Expo, WWDC looms larger and gains importance as an annual gathering point for members of the the Mac and iPhone/iPod eco-systems as well as those desiring to attend or at least visit an annual Apple event.

    We agree.

    Apple can host their own events quite well. Further, the trade show aspects of Macworld can be held at WWDC just as easily.

    I may treat myself to WWDC in 2010. I’ve long wanted to attend one of these events and WWDC is now the one to catch. I’m interested in returning to Web design as serious hobbyist/semi-pro and the classes might be a big help as well.

         
  • Posted: 31 December 2008 09:44 PM #8

    Last year’s Macworld (2008) was my first and last.  WWDC is my next stop, with or without SJ.  Apple’s bowing out has done its shareholders a favor in the long run.  It removes the risk of unmet expectations on a deadline that isn’t Apple’s own. Maybe IDG can drum up interest in a MSWorld featuring Steve Ballmer…

         
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    Posted: 01 January 2009 07:53 AM #9

    MacWorld is as good as gone. What we could see is WWDC being moved forward a month or two and greater use of media events in September and October to showcase new products for the back to school and holiday buying times.

    Launching products in January is just plain stupid, but now we will see even more drop-off in AAPL share prices as there is little to look forward to in the first half of each year.

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