Mac World Expo in San
I'm a die hard, 20+ year veteran Mac user and proud to say I have been to at least half a dozen MacWorld Expos. This year, however, was a big let down. The trade show only covered one 1/2 of one side of Moscone Center. All third party vendors, BUT (and to most this is not news) no Apple, Adobe, Belkin, Canon or most of the usual suspect big name players. Even HP's booth seemed to blend in with the mundane showing of booth after booth of not so interesting products. 1/5 of the floor was occupied by indie/special interest exhibitors who talked about their products from single podium style kiosks. Not a bad idea, but they were so far spaced out that it made the area feel too vacant. Overall the expo was not even a shadow of CES!
This year's focus was primarily on in-ear headphones (and ones with bling), iPhone apps, cases and cable solutions. I was glad to see my personal local faves, Palo Alto's Speck with their innovative cases and Monster Cable, (from Brisbane) whose booth mostly featured their headphone category. I was hoping to see new and exciting programs for Creative types but this was definitely the Year of Accessories. It was good to discover another contender to the Belkin vs. Monster war of wired accessories for car, power, and iPod/iPhones: Schosche. Their beefed up line of products had a good amount of foot traffic and people toting their purchases in their Schoshe bags...which leads me to another thing.
Who doesn't love swag? Part of why you go to any expo is to collect free goodies, brochures, and cool printed and designed bags to stuff all your scored loot. As a graphic designer, we LIVE for this kind of stuff! This time, no free bags unless you purchased something. Ok, I'm always for being more eco-friendly, but it was kind of like going trick-or-treating without having a bucket for your candy.
Most Ridiculous of Show: iPhone Gloves. If you have to use a glove ala Michael Jackson style just to use your phone, maybe it's not the right kind of phone for you.
Favorite Creative Products: Customizable iPhone Cases from both Uncommon and Trexta. A couple unique ideas for cases that you can upload and print your own artwork on and ones that you can actually doodle on like a sketch pad.
Most Unique and Trendy: Although cute anime characters/animals are not my thing, I can see BONE being a huge success with their Japanese style USB products.
I took home with me the latest MacWorld and iPhone Life magazines (um yes, there's a magazine for that), a few sell sheets, a coaster that I used at a bar that night and a bit of pride for supporting an industry that I love. Hopefully next year will be back to bigger and better!
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