IFA Berlin 2020 will be a virtual event combined with live gatherings

IFA Berlin is going to be very different this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation. This year it will be a combination of a physical gathering focusing on B2B functions and an online global tech event.

Essential readingTop fitness trackers and health gadgets

This is not the first such tech gathering to not go ahead as originally planned in 2020. The Mobile World Congress 2020 in Barcelona was cancelled, and Apple held an online version of its Worldwide Developer Conference in June. London’s Wearable Tech show did take place in early March but it was a much smaller affair this year.

IFA Berlin is Europe’s largest tech gathering, a global showcase for technology innovation and an important meeting place for brands, manufacturers, retailers and media. The event usually takes place at the end of August/beginning of September. So far there’ve been 58 of them. A quarter of a million people visited last year’s show so it probably does make sense the event was pulled considering the pandemic.

Wearable technology typically makes a strong showing in Berlin. Most of the big players are there debuting their latest gear, including Fitbit, Garmin, Fossil, Huami and Samsung.

IFA 2020 Special Edition

In 2020 the event will take place in Berlin from 3 to 5th of September. But instead of a physical event spanning endless halls and requiring very long walks, this year we are getting something quite different. This is because German government has banned all public gatherings of more than 5,000 people.

IFA Berlin 2020 cancelled, might be streamed online instead

The organizer has adopted an “innovative concept design”.  This consists of a physical event that focuses on B2B functions, along with the global tech event will be embedded in an extensive virtual event environment.

The physical spaces will consist of:

  • IFA Global Markets: this is a chance to explore opportunities for equipment and design manufacturers, suppliers, retailers and others with B2B networking needs.
  • SHIFT Mobility Convention: this is the place for visions, future trends and discussions on how future mobility will change the way we think, live and move.

There will also be IFA business, retail and meeting lounges along with the IFA Global Press Conference. The first will be the place to meet and strike deals. The second will host more than 800 journalists physically on site along with countless others online. Journalists at the live event will get to speak with exhibitors and experts.

It is unfortunate, but understandable considering the circumstances, that IFA 2020 will not be able to go ahead as usual. But this type of concept is better than nothing. Let’s hope public life returns to normal soon, and next year we get the same old format!

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Marko Maslakovic

Marko founded Gadgets & Wearables in 2014, having worked for more than 15 years in the City of London’s financial district. Since then, he has led the company’s charge to become a leading information source on health and fitness gadgets and wearables.

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