Microsoft this week ran a big test of how to help convert Exhibition The world’s largest CES devices to an online-only event.
Microsoft’s choice to run this year’s CES and create a virtual showcase of up to 1,800 exhibitors gave the tech giant a major boost compared to its most well-known cloud computing competitors, Amazon and Google.
But it also posed reputation risks, and it was difficult at times to pretend this year’s virtual CES was a live event.
The Consumer Technology Association said CTA, The trade group running CES: It made a final decision in July that the event would be hypothetical, then submitted a request to bid, and evaluated over 40 digital platforms before Announce her choice To Microsoft in October.
The tech company has had some experience hosting its own big events during the pandemic, including the Build and Ignite conferences last year, which had nearly 200,000 participants.
Microsoft’s notable participation in CES is a change from recent years when Google and Amazon dominated the annual Las Vegas conference by Marketing Everywhere, as they competed with each other to offer digital voice assistants.
In contrast, Microsoft has maintained a lower profile as it has shifted from a consumer-focused company to a company focused on selling its software and services to large organizations.
Neither Google nor Amazon has said whether they have sought to win the contract to run CES digital this year, but both companies have been sitting mostly outside the show this year and displaying their latest products elsewhere.
“We talked to all the leading technology companies, and many of these companies were taking the physical world and putting it online, and they had avatars roaming around a virtual display floor,” said Jean Foster, CTA’s senior vice president of marketing and communications, but that’s not consistent with What we do.
The event needed a cloud computing provider that could handle a large number of attendees from all over the world, and it needed to be able to set up a registration system, billing system, and attendee documentation system.
“We needed a high level of performance and security, and this is clearly guaranteed in the Microsoft brand,” Foster said.
But the mission required Microsoft to accomplish some tasks that went beyond what it had done for its own events – that is, recreating the experience for the sake of the giant rendition of tools and technology.
“The dilemma was how to get a large group of exhibitors together and show off what they have to say and their performances without an actual exhibit,” said (Bob Bejan) Microsoft CEO who runs global events and production studios and leads the CES project.
The event is designed as a model guide for exhibitors to transform into an interactive digital experience using a combination of video, audio and chat.
The event was a test of Microsoft products, such as Teams, which is the workplace communication app the company is trying to offer as an indispensable service for the workplace during the outbreak.
Conference attendees can send messages to each other and use Teams for virtual meet and greet sessions.
Even when the pandemic fades, Microsoft is heading towards a future in which digital experiences are expected to remain an important component of conferences and other live events.