CES Rebrands iLounge Pavilion as iProducts, Hopes to Attract Macworld Expo Exhibitors

CES announced Thursday a major rebranding of the Apple-centric show-within-a-show that takes place in January. The company said it was changing the name from the iLounge Pavilion to the iProducts Marketplace. The change comes in the wake of Macworld/iWorld going on hiatus, and CES made it clear they want to snag as many vendors from its erstwhile competitor as possible.

"The 2015 CES will feature 20 category-specific marketplaces highlighting innovation across diverse product areas," CES wrote in a statement. "Special consideration will be given to Macworld exhibitors looking for exhibit space at the 2015 International CES."

CES and Macworld/iWorld occupied different places in the tradeshow world. Macworld/iWorld was a consumer trade show attended by members of the press; CES, on the other hand, is an industry-only trade show open exclusively to the press, retailers, manufacturers, and distributors—the general public is not allowed in, period.

CEA, the company that owns CES, long competed with what was originally called Macworld Expo when Apple still attended. Apple's clout brought the global press and many vendors would choose one or the other due to the timing (both shows were held in January before Apple pulled out).

The funny thing to this observer is that Apple continues to dominate the large portion of CES dedicated to the markets where Apple competes, even though Apple is not a direct participant. Many, many vendors are there trying to show how they work with Apple stuff, how they're better/different/cheaper from Apple's stuff, how they're styling matches Apple's stuff, and how they've already got this thing that Apple is rumored to be coming out with at some time in the future.

To help lure vendors away with the show that became Macworld/iWorld, CES brought iLounge in as an umbrella name to make a corner of the massive CES be more appealing to would-be Macworld/iWorld participants. And now, having slain the garden snake that was Macworld/iWorld, CES is moving away from that iLounge branding in favor of the not-site-specific "iProducts Marketplace."

Despite the lack of any iLounge branding in that new name, however, iLounge remains involved with the iProducts Marketplace, at least for now. CES's announcement emphasized the idea that the iProducts Marketplace was "curated" by iLounge—though, please, like CES is turning vendors away?—and included a statement from iLounge's Jeremy Horwitz.