2021 is the year where tech events are hoping to make an in-person comeback, with IFA being the second major expo hoping to stage an in-person event later this year. It’ll join the deferred Mobile World Congress taking place in late June/early July in opening its spaces to the public — only IFA kicks off in September this year.
IFA it happens at all
The event will return to its full size, after being relegated to an online-only event in 2020, the year we’d all rather forget. There was limited in-person attendance at Messe Berlin last year but the organisers are going all-in for 2021. That said, they’re not expecting to set any attendance records this year.
The reasoning for the move is that COVID-19 vaccination programs will apparently have progressed far enough to allow events like IFA to take place. Which is an optimistic idea but it doesn’t make allowances for countries that are doing an awful job of getting vaccines into citizens. Numerous countries around the world have yet to provide even 1% of their populations with the COVID vaccination. With five months to go before the German tech expo kicks off, we can’t see those numbers changing dramatically enough to make it a good idea.
There will be a few new events at this year’s highly optimistic (and hopefully not problematic) exhibition — joining IFA Next, Next Mobility and the summit are Tech Up for Women, which is a conference for women organised by women, and a partnership with the Berlin Photo Week event.