The Consumer Technology Association (CTA), the body that governs the popular Consumer Electronics Show (CES), announced at the end of April that it would be held at Physics in Las Vegas from January 5-8, 2022. The Covid-19 pandemic finally seemed to be coming under control. Tuesday, August 17, the CTA said access to the fair will require proof of vaccination or a test showing the presence of antibodies.

The re-emergence of cases associated with the delta variable does not seem irrelevant to this declaration, and may cause some controversy in United State. In fact, vaccination is seen there – even more so than in France – as a political or even religious issue, linked to individual freedom rather than a simple public health issue meant to save lives and allow a return to normal.

Inevitable choice
However, the scale of CES (171,268 visitors in 2020) with a strong international reach, also known in the tech sector as a guarantee of catching a cold, cannot take this problem seriously. Large independent events have suffered greatly from the pandemic, and unlike the rest of the sector, the advent of remote work and remote meetings is not beneficial to them.

They’ve all certainly made online versions of their event, and CES will do the same in 2022 for people who can’t travel. But their interest and influence are much less. So the danger is that by being absent from the meeting for several years in a row, the event ends up losing its obligatory nature, or even disappearing. To avoid this, the show must be physically viable, and for this, all key players (exhibitors, visitors, press) must be reassured.

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Trade fairs are very risky
Otherwise, the danger is a similar fiasco at the 2021 Mobile World Congress, which was held in Barcelona against all odds, but was just a shadow of itself, without big exhibitors, in a very small space, with empty corridors for lack of. from visitors. The CTA also notes that other protocols based on recommendations from the CDC, the organization responsible for managing epidemics in the United States, will be announced by January.

However, it is still hoped that the health situation will be more under control in January than it is currently in the United States. Because the emergence of a new variant can seriously jeopardize CTA plans.


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