ITExpo - Day 1 - It's a Hit

The 2012 edition of ITExpo East kicked off yesterday here in Miami. Some of us were here on Monday too, but the main program began on Tuesday. I've been pretty busy between briefings, ad hoc meetings and moderating panels, but the vibe has been consistent so far.

Across the board, I think most people will tell you the event is working really well. The hallways are full with activity, the sessions are well attended, the content is great, and the breadth of subject matter is far too great for any human to consume. This last point is to be taken in stride, as all conferences struggle with going either wide or deep. In recent years, TMC's model has been the former, and this cuts both ways. The quality of content here is quite good, but the net is cast so wide now, that for every must-see session you attend, you're going to miss maybe 3-4 others you would just as likely want to see.

Am not sure how you address that aside from sending a team to fan out and cover all the bases. Most people don't have that luxury, so you just have to pick your spots. My day was spent either in briefings or moderating, so I didn't have a chance to see any other sessions. It's too bad, since there's really strong content for me in tracks such as Cloud Communications, SIP Trunking, 4GWE, M2M - and others. Not to mention today's must-see event later on - the Sir Terry Matthews keynote followed by StartupCamp5 Comms Edition, hosted by Embrase. I'll be there!

Well, I think you get the idea. There's a lot of great content here, and that probably helps explain why attendance is so strong. Lots of people here all day long, and you could really see it when the show floor opened late in the afternoon. Not only was the traffic active, but the exhibitor hall was pretty big. Am told there are 200+ exhibitors here, and the range is pretty impressive. Having walked the floor, there's something for everyone here, with all kinds of VoIP providers, SIP trunking offerings, telecom systems, contact centers and cloud. Not that much video, social media or mobility, but a pretty rich pallette nonetheless.

I should add that my two sessions were totally full, and I heard the turnout for other sessions was strong as well. My panels has strong speakers, and I think the time was well spent for attendees. TMC is providing its own coverage of the sessions, and you can follow that on their site. Here's their coverage of our UC Business Case session.

Overall, I think TMC will be pleased with how the sessions are going, and if this continues, I'd say the odds are good that a lot of attendees will be back. That's pretty important, as turnover is a fact of life in this business. For both of my panels, I was very suprised to learn that the vast majority of the audience were first-timers. I think it's great that TMC is attracting new blood, but it also makes me wonder where all the regulars have gone. I'm sure the weak economy has taken its toll, but am not sure if some people have moved on to other events, or simply dropped out of this space completely.

Regardless, the news from Miami so far is very good, and I'm looking for more of the same on Day 2.