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The annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the world’s biggest tech conference, will be held completely virtually next year from January 6th to January 9th. This decision was taken due to the worldwide pandemic and the risks surrounding it.

Previously, CES 2021 was supposed to be held physically with some steps taken to maintain hygiene and social distancing. However, as the condition continues to worsen with no real reprieve, a change had to be made. Moreover, CES is an event that attracts participants from around the world, an in large numbers might I add, all of which are usually packed in a closed off venue. Given the circumstances, the prospect of a physical CES seems rather implausible.

Consumer Technology Association (CTA) organises the CES or what they call ‘the most influential tech event in the world’ every year and it allows participants to witness a variety of new products and innovation in the consumer electronics section from several companies. Companies from around the globe showcase their innovations and there are many product categories like AI, robotics, smart cities etc.

With an all digital experience upcoming, CES will provide keynote speeches, live demos of products and services based on the participants’ interests. Live interactions, meetups and discussion sessions with brands and tech leaders will be hosted for a personalised experience. We emphasise the word personalised experience, for the CTA claims that due to its digital nature, CES 2021 will be a “new immersive experience.” While not a lot of details have been spilled, the term “highly personalized” is on the agenda.

Gary Shapiro, CEO and President of CTA said, “Technology helps us all work, learn and connect during the pandemic – and that innovation will also help us reimagine CES 2021 and bring together the tech community in a meaningful way. By shifting to an all-digital platform for 2021, we can deliver a unique experience that helps our exhibitors connect with existing and new audiences.”

The event hasn’t yet started the registration process for next year but their website says it will start in the fall.

CES is not the only huge tech event which will be hosted virtually. In the past couple of months, we have seen many large organisers take the same decision. These include – Apple’s WWDC, Samsung’s Unpacked, Microsoft’s Build Developer Conference. CES 2022 will be held in Las Vegas as usual, and will feature the best of both worlds: digital and physical.