The coronavirus pandemic has caused many trade shows to either go online, or postpone, and as far as we can see, Computex gave in, and decided to postpone. The Taipei Computer Association (TCA) and Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) have announced that they have cancelled the Computex 2020 IT trade show, which was originally postponed from early June to September 28-30. TAITRA, the Taiwan organisation overseeing the Computex Taipei show, said Friday that Computex has been rescheduled to June 1-5, 2021. Let’s hope the virus dies down soon, and that one isn’t cancelled too. Back in March they decided to delay the show and reschedule it for September end. But unfortunately, even a 3 month delay won’t be sufficient enough as the pandemic is still raging across the world, and doesn’t look like it will slow down before September.
Reason for the cancellation
TIATRA had cited that the travel restrictions in place across the world was the main reason for the cancellation. Taiwan is still banning foreigners from coming to the country due to the pandemic, and that will continue past September. Thus the cancellation was evident.
While TIATRA has a few online events, they weren’t ready to make Computex an online only virtual event like Microsoft Build, or Apple’s upcoming Wordwide Developer Conference.
Coming to last year, there were almost 43000 visitors from over 170 countries. Right now, most of those countries are suffering worse than Taiwan, and are having a hard time managing the pandemic. Thus many trade shows have made the right choice by cancelling. Coming to trade shows, there were other shows that got cancelled earlier this year, like MWC 2020, E3 2020, and Google I/O.
There is a chance that Computex could be replaced with a set of webcasts and press releases over the summer, and by the fall. They could also launch “Computex Online 2D Exhibition“ on 28th September 2020 for displaying the exhibitor’s product and services.
“During this difficult time, the organisers’ heart and sympathy are with those who are affected around the world,” TAITRA wrote. “In the meantime, stay strong and fight on. After rolling with the punches, the organisers look forward to seeing you in Computex 2021 and drive the resilience in the global ICT ecosystem together.”
This seems to be the first year when Computex has cancelled the show entirely. Back in 2003, during the SARS outbreak, the show was postponed to September, and they successfully conducted it. This proves that this year’s COVID-19 is much more serious and disruptive than the previous outbreaks.