According to a report from the Consumer Electronics Association, CES 2012 had approximately 153,000 visitors on the show floor this year. Compared to the 140,000 visitors that attended CES 2011, this constitutes a 9.3 percent increase in total attendees. The CEA claims that this was the largest show in the history of the event and approximately one fifth of the attendees were from areas outside the United States. The show also saw a 15 percent increase in total exhibitors over the previous year with approximately 3,100 exhibitors spreading out over the 1.86 million square feet of floor show space at the Las Vegas Convention Center as well as the meeting spaces in the Venetian.
CEA president Gary Shapiro stated “The 2012 CES was the most phenomenal show in our history, generating more energy and excitement across every major industry touching technology than ever before. The breadth and depth of the 2012 CES, which featured more innovative technology products than anywhere else on Earth, is a testament to the dynamic and innovative global consumer technology industry, which will reach $1 trillion globally this year.” Also according to the CEA, attendees get to avoid a collective 700 million miles of business travel since they can see tons of products all at once rather than traveling from company to company. Approximately 17,000 cups of coffee were sold at the event vendors and the trade show recycled approximately 122 tons of waste produced by the attendees.
However, the popular trade show did offer some controversy on the use of scantily-clad women used to promote products at the show. The BBC produced a short video on the subject interviewing female attendees at the show including Digital Trends staff writer Molly McHugh. While Gary Shapiro dismissed the issue as “cute, but it’s frankly irrelevant“, he appears out of touch with the general consensus of female attendees regarding insulting gender stereotypes.
The ChinaJoy Expo, a large gaming convention in Shanghai, banned the use of “booth babes” earlier this year due to pressure from the Chinese government. The E3 gaming expo when through a similar situation regarding the banning the use of scantily-clad women on the show floor a few years ago, but even the threat of a $5,000 fine wasn’t enough to deter gaming companies from using women to promote new gaming products.