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CeBIT: What's New At Australia's Largest IT Show?

A quick look at Australia's largest IT show . . .

By Ross Tester

To stand out from the crowd (and believe me, it can be very crowded at CeBIT) you need something different. Whether that is a “wow!” stand (and there were a few of those) or a “gee whiz!” product, you needed something to stop the passers-by passing by . . .

At the very least you need something to make visitors remember you, your stand, your products or at least your name.

Bags displaying a name or logo (or both) are very popular, if only to carry home all the brochures before they’re put in the recycling bin. Last year, I recall one of the stands handing out monster-sized yellow bags. Everywhere you looked, you saw those bags. The smaller bags that everyone else handed out were stuffed inside the big bags! I also recall talking to the stand staff and their philosophy was simple: the guys with the biggest bags win. Yep, they won at least as far as exposure was concerned.

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If you look closely, you might notice the new "Shuttle X50" all-in-one PC... it's due to go on sale at the same time as this issue of SILICON CHIP.

While there was none of that this year (an edict from the organisers, maybe?), the NSW Government stand certainly took the prize for the best-bag-at-show. None of your Woolies and Coles bio-degradable politically correct bags here: your taxes went into a you-beaut, zippered (waterproof?) bag complete with compartments for your mobile phone and business cards. (And there were a lot of those bags with similar-sized bags crammed into them so I guess they won this year!).

But of course, CeBIT is much more than bags. It’s about getting your message out to those who are interested (or might become interested if you’re a good talker) into buying your product or service.

To be frank, I find it hard to comprehend the number of stands at shows like CeBIT all trying to flog the same type of products. There were countless companies selling countless software applications – it would appear that anything that started with an “e” was available: emarketing, ecommerce, elearning, etracking, epayments, ehr (how you can have e human resources is a bit beyond me) and so much more – even egovernment, courtesy of Kevin’s sales team.

I noticed a lot more companies specialising in wireless – long range wifi figured prominently once again, as did several companies specialising in the “nuts and bolts” of wireless LANs and WANs, everything from the electronics right down to the connectors.

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