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Microsoft Says Goodbye To CES

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the we're-outta-here dept.

Microsoft 79

theodp writes "Microsoft has traditionally delivered the pre-show keynote and put up a mammoth booth at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas each January. No more. GeekWire reports that Microsoft will bow out of CES after this year's show (Steve Ballmer says buh-bye on Jan. 9). 'As we look at all of the new ways we tell our consumer stories,' explained Microsoft's Frank Shaw, 'it feels like the right time to make this transition.'"

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AC says goodbye to /. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452330)

First AC to ever say goodbye to /.

Re:AC says goodbye to /. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452572)

But Wait! There's more?

Re:AC says goodbye to /. (2)

mcneely.mike (927221) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453234)

Now you can get 2 AC's for the low price of only 3 payments of $49.99! And you also get the Ginsu knife as well!

Heh (0)

warrax_666 (144623) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452348)

'As we look at all of the new ways we tell our consumer stories,'

What... astroturfing?

Nah. It is all those stores they are opening (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452560)

MS is a wannabe Apple.
If Apple is selling shed loads of 'stuff' through it stores then MS will do the same.

Recepie for success?

Nah. Failure more like.
MS does not have a complete story to tell and ultimately sell. No branding, No Kit. No 'aurora of cool'.
Oh well, it will be Mr Balmers swansong won't it.

NO, it's TV (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452648)

They continue to flood TV with their message. It makes sense - why waste money advertising on, for example, the net (after all, if you're on the net, you have almost zero attention span for ads even if you don't have them blocked, and you already have a computer, so it's not like they can really control the message in 30 or 60 seconds).

TV is still the best place to advertise something that has to be seen and heard.

Re:NO, it's TV (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453934)

...which *really* works for me, as I don't watch TV. They can advertise there all they want! Who knows, maybe incessant Windows commercials will inspire others to turn off the TV and, I dunno, talk to their kids.

Re:NO, it's TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38454272)

If prescription medication ads haven't managed to do it, I doubt anything Microsoft could toss together would.

Re:NO, it's TV (1)

Digicrat (973598) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454754)

You mean to say there are still people that watch commercials on TV? Or are you referring to those annoying ads in Hulu? ;-)

Between Online Sreaming (Netflix,Hulu) and DVRs (MythTV with auto-flag+skip commercials) TV commercials are quickly losing their relevance as the best place to be "seen and heard." News outlets, social media, retail stores - that's where the real PR action is nowadays.

Re:Nah. It is all those stores they are opening (0, Offtopic)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453578)

The sad part is until they fire Ballmer who is determined to kill the golden gooses MSFT is in REAL trouble, hell look at the GUI for Windows 8, which is really NOTHING but WinTab being shoved down all their home and business users just so Ballmer can dream of having his very own iPad. I bet you hand that man an iShiny he lovingly caresses it before it sinks in that he don't make it and throws it against the wall!

MSFT needs to accept the fact that they are the new IBM. IBM makes shitloads of money but they will NEVER be "the company" that everyone looks to, old "big blue" as the late Jobs put it, ever again. MSFT has three golden gooses that despite the zealot FOSSIes and iUsers dreams will NEVER go away and will be billion dollar businesses for probably ever as long as they keep updating to support the latest hardware. I'm of course talking and Windows and Office and WinServer which together makes a pretty damned nice solution to most business problems. And of course Windows in the home won't be going anywhere, I'm guessing when Win8 aka "Holy shit you thought Vista was bad look at this!" hits folks will simply stay with Win 7 and call it a day.

They just have to accept they will NEVER be "the company" again like they were in the 90s, where people that didn't even have computers lined up to buy Win95 because they were sure they'd need it. Those days are gone, they missed the mobile boat which has done sailed under twin flags on iShiny and Googledroid. You see I'm willing to bet my last dollar if you could get him to talk off the record he honestly believes that by trying to shoehorn the Windows name onto a cell phone GUI'd OS he can trick developers into writing for WinPhone and WinTab, hence why he is cutting his nose off to spite his face on .NET and Silverlight simply because he can't figure out how to get them to run fast on ARM.

But YOU know it won't work, I know it won't work, and any developer stupid enough to fall for such an obvious ploy is too dumb to write any code worth having anyway. They've thrown billions at the consumer market trying to be the iShiny and its been a MASSIVE fail, just as even after buying all of Yahoo's search they'll never get better than a distance second against Google.

TLDR? The ship has sailed, you've missed the boat, accept this and enjoy your billions in steady profits on X86 for all eternity, because otherwise you are just shitting money down the toilet like all those MMOs that fold after they find out they will NEVER be WoW.

Re:Nah. It is all those stores they are opening (1)

517714 (762276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454182)

But YOU know it won't work, I know it won't work, and any developer stupid enough to fall for such an obvious ploy is too dumb to write any code worth having anyway. They've thrown billions at the consumer market trying to be the iShiny and its been a MASSIVE fail, just as even after buying all of Yahoo's search they'll never get better than a distance second against Google.

Unfortunately, just because code isn't worth having does not prevent it from being successful, even wildly successful. And good code, even great code is no guarantee of success.

As to MS's efforts at iShiny, brown is not the color to choose and I am deeply troubled that my Macbook has not flagged "iShiny" as a misspelling.

Re:Nah. It is all those stores they are opening (0)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456200)

Well of course it didn't because it KNOWS its iShiny! Its all glossy and sleek and iShiny as hell!

But lets be honest friend, let the fangirls mode me down like they did the parent posting as i just don't care, but you can just SMELL the fail with Win 8 can't you? its so damned obvious that the poor little sweaty monkey is practically wearing an "I heart Apple!" T-shirt and hugging an iShiny with a Winsticker on the back every night so desperate is he to have a WinShiny mobile that kicks ass. I don't even want to know how many billions he has shat down the toilet trying to get into mobile while the dumbass ignore the most obvious which is the reason people run Windows is not because they give a flying crap about MSFT but they want and need to run WINDOWS PROGRAMS which just won't work on the ARM chip.

As for the other poster, obviously a .NET or Silverlight dev, who got his panties in a twist that are being kicked to the curb because Ballmer and a winTab iShiny? look friend don't blame me, I think .NET is just fine and Silverlight is pretty damned powerful but the people that actually know how to write in those languages are X86 PROGRAMMERS and all Ballmer give a flying fuck about right now is obviously ARM based touchscreens. i mean have you SEEN Win 8? that thing is practically fucking useless on ANYTHING but a touchscreen! Now how many touchscreens you got hooked to your X86 computers? thought so.

Its just sad to see a large corp like that hit the skids and go to shit thanks to one man's obsession. it reminds me of the Pepsi guy years at Apple where he basically bet the whole damned farm on the look and feel lawsuit and didn't have a backup plan and the whole company hit the skids when they lost. here you have Ballmer willing to take a giant shit on one of the biggest consistent cash cows in history simply because he wants folks to toss a WinShiny every time a new one comes out like they do with iShiny but lets face it, MSFT has NEVER had that kind of slavish loyalty, not when Gates run it and sure as fuck not now.

final prediction: Win 8 becomes Ballmer's folly, possibly getting him pink slipped (Please God please!) and the WinShiny dreams goes down as the worst failure since MSFT Bob and like Bob will be talked about in laughter for decades. Mobile will be split between Apple and Google, with MSFT buying RIM and becoming the business man's cell phone while their consumer phones destroy what's left of Nokia. Meanwhile Macbook owners will still be startled to find macs see no problem with the word iShiny because...well they are! So wave your iShiny silver flag with pride, this is one battle that MSFT isn't gonna be able to buy a win and this is coming from someone without a single iShiny or droid in sight. I can just smell the fail leaking out of Win 8 like the wafting of a porta potty in July.

Re:Nah. It is all those stores they are opening (3, Interesting)

aztracker1 (702135) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454254)

Where are you getting that .Net and Silverlight can't run fast on ARM? .Net is a virtual runtime environment similar to Java and Dalvik, both of which run fine on newer ARM processors. Windows Mobile development (ARM) is currently .Net and Silverlight and runs fairly well. I'm an android user myself, but know enough to say what your spewing isn't accurate.

Re:Nah. It is all those stores they are opening (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38470190)

The plural of goose is geese not gooses

Re:Heh (5, Funny)

clampolo (1159617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452618)

They don't need to astroturf. Not with astounding and game changing technology like the Windows 8 and Windows Phone. They are perfect for all your personal and professional needs. They also make great stocking stuffers as well.

Re:Heh (0)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452722)

hahaahaahahaha what?

Reintroducing windows 3.1 is a game changer?

Re:Heh (1)

RMingin (985478) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453050)

Ssshhh! The fake astroturfer was being snarky!

Re:Heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38454058)

hahaahaahahaha what?

Reintroducing windows 3.1 is a game changer?

just like apple changed the game by reintroducing the newton.

That's it! (1)

warrax_666 (144623) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453238)

You're definitely getting an internet for Christmas.

Re:Heh (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453438)

'As we look at all of the new ways we tell our consumer stories,'

What... astroturfing?

Wasn't really telling consumers at CES anyway, but CE industry press. I attended one of these keynotes about in a nutshell Bill Gates was threatening to invade the markets of about half the companies present. He seemt to carry on like it was all a wonderful, bright and shiny future, not realizing he was talking about taking the bread out of attendees mouths with his Microsoft products. Lotsa hogwash anyway, most of his prophecies were never to be realized.

Yawn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452376)

So what, MS is not really innovating anything new so they do not really belong at CES.

Re:Yawn! (2)

Toe, The (545098) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452426)

You sure the Zune 2 won't be coming out any day now...?

Re:Yawn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452578)

Zune 2. World beater.

Inovate to ass fuck? (5, Informative)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452544)

Since I live in the Puget Sound area, I've signed uyp for and participate in MS "Usability Studies" on a regular basis (it's an excuse to shop at the Redmond Value Village, you would be amazed at the kind of stuff Microsofties donate to second hand stores).

I've seen some of the stuff they are working on in their "labs", and a lot of it is indeed quite innovative. Yet very little ever makes it to a product. Wonder why? There are some smart people working on interesting things in Redmond, but apparently at some level on the Microsoft machine, it all gets patented and forgotten (until they need to ass fuck someone with the patent?)â¦

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452664)

I've wondered the same. They have lots of smart people there making interesting things. There just has to be some evil, self-defeating horde of lawyers and bean counters there making sure it all gets shelved. Meanwhile, the brain-dead leadership lets it happen.

It's a shame. Not many places can afford good research teams.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (2)

Dishevel (1105119) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452798)

Meanwhile, the brain-dead leadership lets it happen.

What leadership?
Very few companies have leaders anymore. With few [youtube.com] exceptions.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (3, Interesting)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453966)

I've seen some of the stuff they are working on in their "labs", and a lot of it is indeed quite innovative. Yet very little ever makes it to a product. Wonder why? There are some smart people working on interesting things in Redmond, but apparently at some level on the Microsoft machine, it all gets patented and forgotten (until they need to ass fuck someone with the patent?)

Thing is, this observation isn't new- it's been commented on for *years* that Microsoft have labs stuffed full of very clever and innovative people, yet still seem to end up churning out mediocre, uninspiring crap. One explanation is that internal politics are responsible- this article comment from someone who claims to have worked at Microsoft [dailytech.com] (click link for full version) is informative:-

There have been many instances at Microsoft where genuine innovations have sat on the shelf or been half-heartedly brought to market [.. In 2002 MS had..] a prototype smartphone that had (essentially) all the useability features of an iPhone, including a trick interface, accelerometer and multi-touch. It was cobbled together and not very pretty, but as a proof of concept, it worked. Yet it never saw the light of day. Why?

Brass’s tablet project was well advanced in the labs too, but somehow never got the traction it deserved internally. [..]

Microsoft has a Darwinian internal structure. Each business unit has to fight for scarce resources, - they compete with each other and only the strong survive. Succeeding in that environment involves more than just having a good (or even great) product or project. Unless you’re Office or Windows, you have to build symbiotic relationships with other business units (preferably the big guys) just to ensure your survival. You have to make their success (at least partially) dependent on yours

[..Secondly..] in its youth, Microsoft could afford to hire only the best and the brightest. Smart people are flexible and innovative in their approach and this reflects in the company’s culture. As the enormous growth of the late 90s took hold, we couldn’t keep up with the demand for more employees and as a consequence, the quality bar dropped. We started employing people who were merely good, not outstanding. These new people were less flexible, less able to handle organisational ambiguity and less passionate about what they were doing. They started to build bureaucracy as a safety-net and as a structure in which they were comfortable operating. Goodbye to dynamic decision-making and rapid market responses.

Anyway, bottom line; the "smart" people starting work there know (or must be really, *really* blinkered not to know) of this reputation, so why are they working there? Silly money?

I'll grant that they came up with Kinect recently, which was pretty innovative (albeit as a response to the Wii controller) and smacked of research turned into a workable product. But that was pretty recent (so couldn't have inspired any but the newest recruits) and probably benefitted from being an XBox product that was out of the way of the entrenched interests and politics of the main Windows-focussed divisions, and in an area where MS had more to gain than lose from innovation.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (2)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 2 years ago | (#38455652)

Which is why Microsoft needs a shakeup starting at the top, the senior execs at Microsoft still seem to be under the impression that it is still 1997 and the only real competition for them are the other execs at Microsoft, not other companies/entities. You can see this reflected not only in their product lines which often feature competing products in the same industry, but also within individual products. The interfaces for different parts of the Windows GUI are different, and of course the GUI for office is different than anything in Windows. Funny thing is that this kind of splintering seems almost inevitable in these behemoth corporations. Microsoft just seems to be following the path blazed by Sony where the company gets too big to manage effectively and constant infighting makes the company incredibly sluggish. Look at the personal music player market, Sony used to be synonymous with portable music, but thanks to their music wing they refused to adapt and not only did they lose the market abroad, they barely have any inroads in the Japanese portable music player market. Microsoft would be wise to read Steve Jobs comments on Sony in his biography, they apply to Microsoft as well.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

inKubus (199753) | more than 2 years ago | (#38455826)

$2.75 earnings per share and a 3.1% dividend yield on 23 billion in net income, I think they're doing fine. They are a money machine, they aren't hipsters. Why invest all the time and money in huge new projects and technology when you have stuff making tons of money and more importantly profit. MSFT isn't even in the same class as Apple or whatever people are comparing them to nowadays (Apple, I'm guessing). Geeze, look at IBM, same story. No one balls out IBM for having tons of patents and no real products.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 2 years ago | (#38463806)

I think they're doing fine. They are a money machine, they aren't hipsters. Why invest all the time and money in huge new projects and technology when you have stuff making tons of money and more importantly profit.

Er, but the point is that they *are* "investing all that time and money" in lab research on innovative products and technologies anyway... it's just that it rarely seems to make it out!

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454500)

Yet very little ever makes it to a product. Wonder why?

Because often the 'cool stuff' will be too expensive when it goes to market. Why did the Lisa flop? Because, while in many ways it was cooler than the mac, it was too expensive.

It's no good inventing some cool 3D gaming console - If it needs to retail for $1,499 it's going to fail. Cool stuff needs to meet a magic price point - Even though some people are willing to pay the 'apple tax' they're only willing to go so far...

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

RichardCory (2533518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38460980)

"Wonder why?" Because MS depends on their customers to tell them what they want. At the same time they are profit focused. The combination of those two things means that a lot of otherwise cool products never see the light of day. This isn't the fault of MS engineering (which does a pretty good job) it's the fault of their management, leadership and Little Stevie Balmer for whom profit is KING (rather than product). Not pushing Apple cause they have their own issues but they used the reverse process to great success. Let the creative people (engineers+) come up with the products (Tell the customer what they want). Winnow the list to two or three things. Focus on making them really well and really cool, sell them as cheaply as possible, and the profit will follow (obviously with some discipline about spending). If a companies primary mission is to make as much money as possible they are doomed to fail because the product will suck. Apple Vs Microsoft is the clear proof. Most valuable company in the world Vs a bunch of rich people with a lot of mediocre technology.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

lamz (60321) | more than 2 years ago | (#38461052)

You say "a** f**k" like it's a bad thing.

Re:Inovate to ass fuck? (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 2 years ago | (#38463738)

You say "a** f**k" like it's a bad thing.

I *did not* say "a** f**k", I said "ass fucking". There is a difference.

Consumer Expos on the way out? (4, Insightful)

milbournosphere (1273186) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452400)

It seems to me like Microsoft isn't exactly losing anything by bowing out. CES, Macworld and others are increasingly places for smaller 3rd party vendors to peddle their usually cheap (and sometimes knockoff) wares. More importantly, if you as a company attend and have a large presence, you're obligated to come up with something shiny and capable of making a splash. In a sense, it enforces a hard deadline. In the age of the internet, it seems easier to just issue a PR and rely on your pr team to generate press, or stream your own event. Apple realized this and has since moved from Macworld to hosting\streaming their own events. To me it looks like Microsoft is just making the same wise decision. They have a big enough name; they don't need the press generated by CES.

Re:Consumer Expos on the way out? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452502)

Counterpoint: the Big Show is a useful tool for focusing attention of the engineering staff, including the gatekeepers (like the build team) who otherwise enjoy telling people why their special request can't be done. It gives engineers and small teams developing new stuff something concrete to shoot for. And once projects and products are committed for the show, serious issues MUST be resolved by that date, so slipping the schedule by one week every week is no longer an option.

I agree with the MS guy that January is an awkward time for the development staff though - I'm sure that working 60 hour weeks through the holidays gets old fast.

Re:Consumer Expos on the way out? (2, Insightful)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452998)

including the gatekeepers (like the build team) who otherwise enjoy telling people why their special request can't be done.

You mean it lets management force poor ideas down the development team's collective throat?

Re:Consumer Expos on the way out? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452530)

I think the internet has largely made consumer oriented conventions obsolete. Once upon a time, you wanted to make big announcements at CES (or a similar convention) because it would get you more publicity. The main avenue of publicity for consumer electronics was magazines, and the convention review type issues were always the best selling. So if you put out an announcement in May and it showed up in the April issue, not many people read it. If you made your announcement at CES and it showed up in the February issue, you reached a much larger audience. This approach had its downsides, mainly that your announcement had to be big enough that it didn't get drowned out in the sea of announcements made at the convention, but that just led to increased competition for having the coolest new product at the show. In the Internet age, the upside of wider coverage just isn't there. People don't get their news from magazines anymore, and people who care about consumer electronics generally read about them all year long. But the massive downside is obviously still there, and it's just not worth the competition.

Re:Consumer Expos on the way out? (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456010)

It seems to me like Microsoft isn't exactly losing anything by bowing out.

It's not so much CES that's on the way out as Microsoft that's on the way out as far as a consumers are concerned. Microsoft didn't decide to "bow out", in fact CES decided to not invite them to do the keynote for 2013. After all it's been a long time since they were amongst the most influential consumer technology companies.

http://parislemon.com/post/14590185649/fuck-me-no-fuck-you [parislemon.com]
http://gigaom.com/2011/12/21/mystery-who-killed-the-microsoft-ces-keynote/ [gigaom.com]

Re:Consumer Expos on the way out? (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 2 years ago | (#38458472)

CES, Macworld and others are increasingly places for smaller 3rd party vendors to peddle their usually cheap (and sometimes knockoff) wares.

In other words, It is going to be filled with the people Microsoft is going to be suing for patent infringement if they don't pony up. I wouldn't show my face either.

New MS show? (1)

CimmerianX (2478270) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452410)

MS will probably want an all MS show. LIke a 'Microsoft-con' or something....

5 will get you 10.

Re:New MS show? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452504)

'Microsoft-con' - that was a good one!

Re:New MS show? (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453228)

No, Micro-Con.

Re:New MS show? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38455020)

Let's just shorten it to con.

Re:New MS show? (-1, Troll)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452772)

They already have a microsoft con. It's called "the legal system".

'Microsoft-con' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38453408)

aptly named.

Consumer stories? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452412)

As a consumer I have to say that it's hard to tell my story what with being all bent over and a ball gag shoved in my mouth. Long live corporate interests!

Re:Consumer stories? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38454256)

being all bent over and a ball gag shoved in my mouth.

You're doing it wrong.

Cost-cutting move (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452418)

Sounds like someone finally said "enough is enough!" PR events are always too much effort for too little gain.

So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452528)

CES is becoming increasely irrelevant. Microsoft is leaving while they are still ahead.

Maybe... (1)

Detaer (562863) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452540)

Have they actually had anything to show at CES worth looking at? Seems like throwing good money out to show bad products is a bad idea. It makes sense that they should make better products, but it looks like they are just going to focus on saving money.

Buh-bye! (0)

twoears (1514043) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452640)

Don't let any chairs hit you on the way out!

Not just Microsoft (5, Interesting)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452668)

Trade shows are largely a relic of the pre-Internet world. Nowadays we can get pretty much any information we need about a brand new product simply by visiting the vendor's website. We've seen technology-driven companies moving away from announcing and/or releasing products at mega-trade shows especially over the past 4-5 years, whether they're computer companies (Apple, Microsoft), camera companies (Nikon, Canon), or "we do it all and do it badly" companies (Sony).

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453000)

Trade shows are largely a relic of the pre-Internet world.

That certainly neatly explains the continued growth of PAX doesn't it?
 

We've seen technology-driven companies moving away from announcing and/or releasing products at mega-trade shows especially over the past 4-5 years, whether they're computer companies (Apple, Microsoft), camera companies (Nikon, Canon), or "we do it all and do it badly" companies (Sony).

Not so much for camera makers - Photokina is still a very big deal. The Paris Air Show is still a big deal in the aviation world as well. Etc... etc...
 
There's more to world of trade shows than just IT geekfests.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453160)

Not so much for camera makers - Photokina is still a very big deal. The Paris Air Show is still a big deal in the aviation world as well. Etc... etc...

I'll give you the Paris Air Show, but those are airplanes for goodness sake!

It seems to me that Photokina announcements tend to be about consumer kit rather than pro kit anymore - but we'll see what happens. With an every-other-year show, I don't know that trends would be as apparent as with annual shows.

Re:Not just Microsoft (2)

Kozar_The_Malignant (738483) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453544)

I'll give you the Paris Air Show, but those are airplanes for goodness sake!

For many, the primary value of the Paris Air Show is to see if the Soviets/Russians will crash their latest Tupolev/Sukhoi/MiG. Can't be good for sales. To be fair, they haven't done it for a while at Paris.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454160)

PAX is very much a community event that enables exchange. It's not primarily a trade show (though it contains that component), and it doesn't display the largely unidirectional dissemination mindset that other trade shows like E3 or the now-dead COMDEX used to embody.

Everybody who is saying that nobody needs trade shows to make announcements in the internet age is right. Quite frankly that trade shows for other industries are less effected so far is probably more an indicator of lag than anything else. Because the 'tech' industries are closer to the internet as a matter of course, it is only natural that things like COMDEX would implode first. Someday when most of the analogue photographers are retired, it wouldn't surprise me if things like Photokina either disappeared or reoriented to be less disseminatory and more community exchange. (Yeah, the internet facilitates that too, but the internet doesn't have hotel parties, and don't kid yourself, that's the best part of shows/cons.)

I think that for things like cars and planes trade shows will be eternal, simply because their physicality is so important. Gadgets are sold on feature lists. Even while features remain important to purchasing decisions, vehicles are sold on a visceral impression of their sturdiness, comfort, and design. Because safety and ease of maintenance etc. are so important to vehicles, people really want to be able to touch them to be assured of their quality before they sign any commitment that might put themselves at risk. (Assurances from regulatory agencies notwithstanding.)

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454598)

Everybody who is saying that nobody needs trade shows to make announcements in the internet age is right.

But what 'everyone' is missing is that there is more to trade shows (much more) than just announcements.
 

Quite frankly that trade shows for other industries are less effected so far is probably more an indicator of lag than anything else.

In other words, you've assumed yourself to be correct, and any evidence otherwise is just more evidence you're correct.
 

I think that for things like cars and planes trade shows will be eternal, simply because their physicality is so important. Gadgets are sold on feature lists. Even while features remain important to purchasing decisions, vehicles are sold on a visceral impression of their sturdiness, comfort, and design. Because safety and ease of maintenance etc. are so important to vehicles, people really want to be able to touch them to be assured of their quality before they sign any commitment that might put themselves at risk.

You honestly believe people go to the Paris Air Show only to see something they could see any day of the week by simply visiting the manufacturer? You really are deluded.
 
As I said, there's more to the world than IT. There's also much more to the world than 'gadgets'. Grow up and get out of your parent's basement.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 2 years ago | (#38455610)

I like how rather than provide any evidence to the contrary, you just assert that I'm wrong, and pretend that makes you look 'in the know'.

I used to work for Boeing as a contractor on 777 final assembly. My wife still works for Boeing, and we're both the third generation from our families to do so. I probably know more about aircraft and the industry surrounding them than you do.

And what you say of visiting manufacturers is true of any industry. By that logic it would be universal. It doesn't matter whether you're buying widebody aircraft or some retail shelf fodder, if you're about to contract for millions of dollars worth of goods, you'll probably take some time to scope out your supply chain.

Whether you want to admit it or not, part of the continued existence of tradeshows is institutional momentum. When something has been happening the same way for generations, it's hard to dump even when it makes potential business sense. However there is a sea change coming, because once gen x & y hit the executive levels in force, businesses will be adjusted more in line with new realities.

Oh, and in full pedantry, my parents don't have a basement, so it would be pretty hard to live down there with my own kids.

So put your arrogant, wrong assumptions to bed, dumbass.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

radish (98371) | more than 2 years ago | (#38456544)

PAX is explicitly not a trade show - nothing new is announced there and the trade presence is typically companies re-using their demos and booths from the previous E3 as well as a bunch of indies who are too small for a real trade show. PAX is a community gathering, the panels and other community events are way more interesting than the expo floor.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454096)

Trade shows, when done properly, give industry people a chance to meet and greet various others they may not have noticed before. Share ideas, etc. Um, that's the idea anyway.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

Alomex (148003) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454374)

or "we do it all and do it badly" companies (Sony).

Plus we introduce an incompatible, inferior, more expensive, new format in the process.

Re:Not just Microsoft (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#38455236)

Our company attends conferences but not trade shows anymore. We used to have a big rush to get our marketing material and booth ready every year for the Design Automation Conference (DAC) but even the big vendors have long pulled out of that one and we abandoned it before that. It's just too much effort (and expense) for very little benefit. The only people going to the trade shows in the last few years were existing customers who would come by for a chat. New customers just go to the web.

Microsoft CES Exit Echoes Apple MacWorld Exit (5, Interesting)

theodp (442580) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452714)

Microsoft (Dec. 21, 2011) [technet.com] : As we look at all of the new ways we tell our consumer stories â" from product momentum disclosures, to exciting events like our Big Windows Phone, to a range of consumer connection points like Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft.com and our retail stores â" it feels like the right time to make this transition.

Apple (Dec. 16, 2008) [gizmodo.com] : Apple is reaching more people in more ways than ever before, so like many companies, trade shows have become a very minor part of how Apple reaches its customers. The increasing popularity of Apple's Retail Stores, which more than 3.5 million people visit every week, and the Apple.com website enable Apple to directly reach more than a hundred million customers around the world in innovative new ways.

Re:Microsoft CES Exit Echoes Apple MacWorld Exit (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38455972)

It might be tempting to draw a parellel, however it's a false one.

Apple decided to stop being a part of the MacWorld convention. Both Keynote and Stand.

Microsoft on the other hand were not invited to do another Keynote for 2013, and withdrew their plans to have a stand in response. to that.

Apple jumped, Microsoft were pushed.

http://parislemon.com/post/14590185649/fuck-me-no-fuck-you [parislemon.com]
http://gigaom.com/2011/12/21/mystery-who-killed-the-microsoft-ces-keynote/ [gigaom.com]

Still chasing Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38452766)

And still five years behind.

Re:Still chasing Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38470250)

+1

Spin (1)

Zaphod The 42nd (1205578) | more than 2 years ago | (#38452822)

'As we look at all of the new ways we tell our consumer stories,' explained Microsoft's Frank Shaw, 'it feels like the right time to make this transition.'"

New ways they tell consumer stories?! Golly that is some grade-A PR bullshit right there.

Re:Spin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38453072)

New ways they tell consumer stories?! Golly that is some grade-A PR bullshit right there.

Sounds like a Mr. Cynical is just a teensy bit jealous about not being invited to his neighborhood Windows 7 home release party! :)

Well there go... (2)

dave562 (969951) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453054)

...my all expenses paid trips to pr0n-con^H^H^H^H^H^H^H, CES.

On topic, I'm surprised that it took Microsoft this long to drop out of CES. It has been shrinking and becoming more and more irrelevant with each passing year. I always figured it was just an excuse to be in town at the same time as the AVN awards.

Re:Well there go... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38453348)

The funny thing here is that for the first time in a looong time, AVN and CES are not running at the same time...

CES is Jan 10-13
AVN is Jan 18-21

Re:Well there go... (1)

dave562 (969951) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453826)

Even the porn stars see the writing on the wall with regards to CES.

Re:Well there go... (1)

soundguy (415780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38455506)

That was an excellent cover story for a lot of the AEE attendees. You could ride the buses or the monorail between the Sands Expo and the LV Convention Center and if you were staying at the Venetian or Palazzo, you had a perfectly good excuse to be in the vicinity of AEE. A lot of those "secret" CES parties were decorated with porn stars who just happened to be there that week already because of AEE/AVN Awards. It was a Win-Win for everyone.


Not sure what the deal is with moving both the AEE show and the AVN Awards to different venues and a different week, but I suspect it has something to do with money. The Hard Rock has been teetering on the brink of bankruptcy for a few years now so they probably gave AEE a hell of a deal to have both events there. The date change makes it coincide more closely with the InterNext Porn Webmaster and B2B event which is the 3-4 days immediately preceding the new AEE dates.


I think the Shot Show is now going to overlap with CES, but I don't see there being a lot of crossover between the two crowds. I've been to CES for the last couple of years but I'm not going anymore. There really aren't many announcements in January these days. Any prototypes that were shown seemed to always have a release date in June. I always walked right on thru the MS area without a second glance anyway. Personally, I find the NAB and InterOp shows a lot more interesting and I'll continue to go to those.

Re:Well there go... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38456040)

On topic, I'm surprised that it took Microsoft this long to drop out of CES. It has been shrinking and becoming more and more irrelevant with each passing year.

Microsoft or CES?

Now that's confidence in their Consumer products (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453580)

Considering the only thing they have is the XBox and the world + dog has been coo coo for iPods, iPhones, and iPads plus the Android devcies, it just doesn't make sense for them to be there with no hope of winning consumer hearts and minds.

It makes perfect sense because it isn't called the <bold>Consumer</bold> Electronics Show for nothing.

LoB

Nobody cares about software at CES (2)

ravenscar (1662985) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453678)

I attended CES last year. Nobody there was interested in the stuff that wasn't the 'end product.' As such, people were in the MSFT booth, but they were much more interested in the hardware from other vendors than they were with the MSFT software running on it. People could have seen that stuff in the booths of the appropriate hardware vendor. The one place this didn't hold true was in the XBox/Kinect area. There were a ton of people interested in spending time in that space - but that's an 'end product'. Interestingly, it's an end product that is probably best showcased at E3.

The same can be said about Intel's booth. The biggest draw there was the chance to play Portal 2 before release.

Chances are that, unless I can hold the product you're selling in my hand and get an immediate benefit from it on its own, it probably isn't best showcased with a mega-dollar booth at CES (a small booth in the component exhibitors area maybe).

I guess I'm just saying that conventions like CES probably aren't the best bang for the buck for MSFT.

CES has been no fun and a chore to cover since... (1)

BenEnglishAtHome (449670) | more than 2 years ago | (#38453820)

...the porn vendors left and set up their own show. Who wants to go to CES and endure all that crap when your show badge doesn't even buy you any decent eye candy?

Translation: (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 2 years ago | (#38454016)

We don't have anything to show that people couldn't easily pick apart, and we don't want customers to get close to Windows 8 until we can keep it from randomly exploding, and Balmer's stage presence... let's face it, he's become a laughingstock. So we're choosing to present our products in much more controlled circumstances like TV ads. And in those ads we'll mostly be ragging on how complicated our competitor's products are, because we can't compete on functionality, as every one of them will do more than ours.

There, fixed it for you.

Great To See An Old Idea Moving On (1)

DanielBMS (1871138) | more than 2 years ago | (#38461310)

Now if only we can begin the mourning phase for phone books and most of the math you learned you in school.
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