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Coronavirus Brings Innovation and Disease To Tech Trade Shows

<p>First, the bad news. The novel coronavirus or COVID-19 is now a pandemic. It continues to spread around the world with damaging effects to public health and the global economy.</p><p>Conference and exhibition trade shows have been hit hard by COVID-19. As <a href="">reported previously</a>, fears and uncertainties about the coronavirus are impacting the $2.5 trillion trade show business that includes related hotel, airline, entertainment, marketing, restaurant and other industries. The fears are proving to be well-founded as attendees have been infected at three event gatherings to date.</p><p>Now, the good news (sort of). Trade show organizers and planners are being cautious about the dangers posed by COVID-19.  Many technical trade shows have been and will be cancelled, postponed or transformed into virtual, online events, offering several reasonable benefits to attendees.</p><p>The true impact of tech event closures, postponements and online transformations will not be known for many months. But it’s possible to get a sense of where things are going by looking at the following:</p><ul><li>Clever marketing approaches like the conference that favors speakers from tech events cancelled by the coronavirus.</li><li>Events which helped the spread COVID-19.</li><li>The decision to virtualize an online event and successful approaches.</li><li>Status of conferences in a few major tech market areas.</li><li>State and Federal government banning of gatherings in general.</li></ul>
Current trends suggest major changes, but which are for the better and which are not?

John Blyler is a Design News senior editor, covering the electronics and advanced manufacturing spaces. With a BS in Engineering Physics and an MS in Electrical Engineering, he has years of hardware-software-network systems experience as an editor and engineer within the advanced manufacturing, IoT and semiconductor industries. John has co-authored books related to system engineering and electronics for IEEE, Wiley, and Elsevier.

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