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Crystal Ball or Crystal Bull – Reviewing Predictions for 2014

Businessman Consulting Glowing Crystal Ball

An honest look at the accuracy of the forecasting that invariably takes place at the end of each year, courtesy of Trade Show News Network. You can read the whole thing here.

We’re past the half-way mark of 2014, so let’s see whether the predictions we made at the start of the year came to pass.

Facebook-Consolidation

Organizers will be looking for joint solutions

We foresaw the desire among clients for fewer vendors to provide more. We mentioned audience response as a stand-alone product that should be part of a larger event technology offering. So, it seems that there is an appetite for the consolidation of functionality under a single solution.

 

Windows Phone will be the heir to BlackBerry

Recent figures from statcounter suggest that Windows has indeed swapped places with Blackberry – but both are significantly trailing Android and Apple in the smartphone market.

 

Bostonconventioncenter

Event Wi-Fi will (finally) turn a corner

While there haven’t been incremental improvements in Wi-Fi coverage, other technologies have emerged that might improve the situation. Apple’s iMesh technology enables a wireless device to act as a kind of relay, transferring internet access down the chain (read more about this here). Exhibition centers do seem to be taking notice of the event Wi-Fi situation too; Boston Convention and Exhibition Center was the first venue to lead its advertising with its Wi-Fi credentials.

 

Organizers will track attendees around an event

The proximity awareness of beacons now allows organizers to send information to attendees based on their location – and there has been a lot of buzz surrounding their deployment at events. We expect beacon usage to escalate; although it is important that the privacy implications of this are properly understood and factored in.

Contactless transactions

Contactless transactions at events will increase 

We correctly predicted Apple would join the Near Field Communication (NFC) fold. NFC cards are being issued for registration, session entry, etc., especially at corporate events. However, event organizers are not rushing to make use of NFC capabilities on smartphones – yet. Also, contactless payments are growing, particularly in the Far East.

 

There will be more consolidation in the event tech industry

Consolidation really is inevitable – partly a result of the growing maturity of the event tech industry, but also driven by the desire of organizers to reduce the number of vendors they need to work with to pull an event together. Whether it is through strategic partnerships or through direct acquisition, this is one trend that isn’t going away.

But wait– There’s more! You can read the whole thing at the Trade Show News Network web site.

 

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What are YOUR thoughts on all this? We’d like to hear your comments!

 

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