5 Interactive Technology Trends for 2011
Dec 10, 2010 by DeDe Mulligan

As technology becomes cheaper and easier to use, interactive technology tool rentals will continue to open up new options for event meeting services planners. Below are the major trends to watch for in 2011.

 
Interactive Technology Tools - AV Event Solutions
Mobile Applications


Organizations will continue to rent iPads and rent Tablet PCs, which are highly portable and easy for attendees to use while sitting, standing, or walking. Here are some ideal uses:

  • Networking
  • Interactive Displays at Tradeshow Booths
  • Lead Exchange and Qualifications
  • Surveys
  • Electronic Ticketing
  • Showcase Programs, Session Handouts and Exhibit Guides
  • Video Streaming

In fact, there are so many new applications being developed for this platform, a meeting apps website has been developed to help planners sort through the software.

Wireless Audience Response Systems will continue to be utilized for audience polling and surveys. In fact, we recently featured the five most popular uses of audience response and how it allows event planning professionals the ability to communicate better with their attendees during the meeting.

Location Applications

Foursquare
 encourages attendees to explore the cities they are in and then rewards them for doing so. Foursquare provide a social city guide elements with game mechanics, so users earn points and unlock badges for trying new places and revisiting old favorites. Gowalla allows attendees to discover new places and hot spots when they  go out, share their photos, and recommend places and cities to fellow attendees.

Hybrid Meetings

As meetings and events continue being cost-conscious and ROI driven, new interactive technology tool rentals will drive continued growth in hybrid meetings. The three major benefits of hybrid meetings are:

  • Saving Money
  • Higher Attendance and
  • Promoting Green Meetings
Skype offer many solutions for businesses including group video calling.

Several hotels, including Starwood and Marriott, have built public telepresence suites to provide virtual meeting spaces for groups to meet. Telepresence is a rapidly growing and increasingly popular technology that enables small groups to meet and collaborate in multiple locations worldwide in real time.  

"We expect to see more requests for hybrid meetings in 2011, with an added emphasis on their availability to reinforce a meeting’s ‘green’ efforts," said Karen Young, PCMA Managing Director and Vice President of Meeting Services. "Incorporating technology, such as live broadcasts and video streaming, allows clients to conduct and attend meetings from remote locations."
 

Social Media

The big 3: Facebook,LinkedIn, and Twitter will continue to be used for event marketing and attendee engagement. While most of this interaction will happen on the attendee’s mobile device, an application for computer kiosks will provide Twitter boards that can allow attendees to tweet between sessions and see live updates from all attendees.
 
Green Meetings

"It’s not enough to simply select LEED-certified destinations and use recyclable products," Young said. Attendees will now expect every aspect of the meeting to have a green focus from using china instead of Styrofoam and iPads instead of thick binders.

An easy example, according to Young, are donation stations where attendees and exhibitors can donate their leftover trade show bags and giveaways to local organizations. Another example is working with the venue to donate leftover food to a local food service charity.

Looking for interactive technology tool rentals? AV Event Solutions, a California event services company, can provide your next meeting, event, conference or tradeshow with all the state-of-the-art technology tool rentals you need.

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