What normally happens in Las Vegas every year in January will not be in Las Vegas after all.
CES 2021, scheduled to run from January 6 to 9, 2021, will not take place in Las Vegas, the Consumer Technology Association announced. It is the last event canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has had a resurgence in the United States in the past two months. Instead, the trade group said, next year’s consumer electronics show will be presented as “a fully digital experience” on the same dates.
As recently as the end of June, the trade group had planned to hold a reduced version of the confab in Sin City in January 2021. Now, CTA said, it plans to return to Las Vegas for CES 2022, “combining the best elements of a physical and digital show. “
“Amid the pandemic and growing global health concerns about the spread of COVID-19, it simply is not possible to safely convene tens of thousands of people in Las Vegas in early January 2021 to meet and do business in person, “CTA Chairman and CEO Gary Shapiro said in a statement.
In recent years, Hollywood executives and media and entertainment companies have increasingly come to CES’s C Space as a meeting and event center amid the grand trade show. Now, like almost every industry event since mid-March, CES 2021 will take place in cyberspace.
CTA said it would announce scheduling details for virtual CES 2021 later. The trade association said the digital convention and exhibition will be a “highly personalized experience” and will include talks by “technology innovators”, news announcements and product demos.
Even when CTA had planned to go ahead with CES 2021’s in-person execution, with security protocols, the group acknowledged that it would be “a smaller spectacle than it has been in recent years.” Fewer people will be able to travel to the United States and Las Vegas, and many of our smaller, international exhibitors will not be able to travel to Las Vegas to exhibit this year. “
CES 2020 attracted 170,000 attendees and more than 4,400 exhibiting companies in more than 2.9 million square feet of net space, according to CTA. That was less than 175,000 attendees and more than 4,500 exhibitors in 2019.