SAN FRANCISCO, Macworld 2011 — Proving that the show can go on without Apple, Macworld 2011 opens today and is bigger and better than ever.
Well, bigger and better than last year.
This is the second year of Macworld without Apple, but the show has attracted 10% more exhibitors than 2010 and is on track for 25,000 visitors, organizers say.
“The show is shaping up good,” Macworld general manager Paul Kent told CultofMac.com. “If the numbers go right, we’re going to have about a 25% increase in attendance.”
Starting Wednesday and running through Saturday, Macworld won’t see anything like a new iPad, but will feature lots of iOS accessories, Mac software, and apps. Plus a ton of Apple fans, of course, which is really the point.
The lineup of products at the show reflects Apple’s product mix: about one-third Mac OS stuff and two-thirds iOS-related products. The biggest speaker is comedian Sinbad, who’ll be cracking jokes about his love of Apple on Thursday afternoon.
“It’s a really fun time,” said Kent. “Macworld is a celebration. There’s a high joy quotient. It’s a fun place to be. There’s not a lot of places were people can do this any more.”
- More than 25,000 attendees expected, based on the pre-show registrations
- More than 230 exhibitors. 53% new to Macworld
- More than 100 new products expected to be launched
- Official Twitter hashtag is #Macworld2011
Here’s some other things to look forward to:
Wednesday is the Industry Forum. Here’s the schedule. Highlights include:
10:40 am – 11:00 am – Harry McCracken, Editor, Technologizer – Thoughts on Mobile. Basically, iOS v. Android.
11:10 am – 11:30 am – Bill Atkinson, Apple programming legend and photographer – Trends in Human-Computer Interface. How computer UIs will become “a conversational user interface with a personal assistant avatar.”
3:30 pm – 3:50 pm – Mike Lawrence, Executive Director, Computer-Using Educators (CUE) – Apple’s Role in Ubiquitous Learning. How mobile will transform computers in education.
10:00 am — Expo show floor opens.
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm — Sinbad. An hour of comedy with the long-time Macworld supporter.
5:30 pm – ~8:30 p.m — Tech journalist + app developer meetup at Wired HQ – free booze while you schmooze!
9:00 – 10:00 am — Kyle Wiens, CEO of iFixit presents iFixit live! Wiens will teardown Apple gear and competing products like Samsung’s Galaxy Tab live on stage. Learn about trends in industrial design.
11:30 am – 12:00 pm — Zoë Keating, Cellist and Composer. The one-woman orchestra gives a cello and MacBook performance.
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm — Jordan Rudess, Keyboardist. Music Meets Multitouch. Check out the hard rock keyboardist playing the iPad.
Saturday is the big day when people with jobs and schoolkids go. It’s usually a zoo. Free schwag though.