IFA 2020 will go ahead as an in-person event

The organisers of the IFA technology trade show have confirmed that this year's event will go ahead as an in-person event.

The surprise announcement comes after a number of major tech events, including Dreamforce, Google I/O and Microsoft Build, were cancelled or moved online due to the global coronavirus pandemic.

IFA, however, is bucking the trend. The consumer electronics show will take place from 3 September to 5 September in Berlin, Germany, though there will be a "tight limit" on attendees, according to the organisers, and it won't be open to the public.

Rather, this year’s conference will be invite-only and divided into four smaller events, with no more than 1,000 attendees allowed at each event each day. There will be double the number of keynote stages this year, everything will take place at one location, and a small media space will allow for limited interview and demonstration opportunities.

The organisers of the event said that the concept was developed in close collaboration with public health authorities in Germany to ensure the health and safety of participants.

IFA says the conference will provide an opportunity for companies to showcase their new products ahead of the year’s most important shopping season.

Jens Heithecker, executive director of IFA Berlin, said: “After all the event cancellations during the past months, our industry urgently needs a platform where it can showcase innovation, so that it can recover and rebound. The recovery of our industry starts here at IFA Berlin.”

“While virtual events were useful, they were missing the immediacy, hands-on experience and human connections that make events like IFA Berlin so incredibly useful.”

Though IFA going ahead as an in-person event, the show's organisers say they will offer "virtual opportunities" for those who are still unable to attend due to travel restrictions.

Carly Page

Carly Page is a freelance technology journalist, editor and copywriter specialising in cyber security, B2B, and consumer technology. She has more than a decade of experience in the industry and has written for a range of publications including Forbes, IT Pro, the Metro, TechRadar, TechCrunch, TES, and WIRED, as well as offering copywriting and consultancy services. 

Prior to entering the weird and wonderful world of freelance journalism, Carly served as editor of tech tabloid The INQUIRER from 2012 and 2019. She is also a graduate of the University of Lincoln, where she earned a degree in journalism.

You can check out Carly's ramblings (and her dog) on Twitter, or email her at hello@carlypagewrites.co.uk.