Trade Show News

CES: The Most Powerful Tech Event in the World for Exhibitors

Find out what makes the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) the ultimate tech trade show in the world. And why you, as an exhibitor, should show up here.

Each year, the extravagant trade show by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) introduces us to a myriad of groundbreaking technologies, setting the stage for what’s to come in the world of consumer electronics. From Philips introducing the first-ever home VCR back in 1970 to Microsoft unveiling Xbox in 2001, CES has always been a trendsetter in the tech industry.

[READ: 10 Key Elements of Trade Show Planning]

Let’s explore what makes CES the ultimate tech trade show in the world-

The History of CES

Back in the 1960s, the Chicago Music Show served as the flagship industry event for consumer electronics exhibitors. In 1967, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) was held in New York as a spinoff of the Chicago Music Show. It attracted over 100 exhibitors and around 17,000 visitors. Bob Galvin, the chairman of Motorola, was the kickoff speaker.

Over the years, CES has witnessed numerous milestones and transitions. For instance, between 1978 and 1994, CES was held twice yearly as WCES (Winter Consumer Electronics Show) and SCES (Summer Consumer Electronics Show). In 1998, it moved to the once-a-year format, and the location was also changed to Las Vegas.

[READ: Strategies for Creating the Best Attendee Experience at Trade Shows]

Notable CES Moments and Innovations

Many of the groundbreaking innovations from the tech industry were first unveiled at CES. Here are a few highlights-

  1. Home VCR (1970)- Philips introduced the first home Video Cassette Recorded (VCR) at CES, revolutionizing how we consumed television and movies.
  2. CD Player (1981)- Sony and Philips jointly announced the compact disc and demonstrated the technology at CES.
  3. Camcorder (1981)- Sony and JVC together unveiled the first camcorder.
  4. DVD (1996)- Sony, Philips, Samsung, Toshiba, and Panasonic jointly introduced the DVD (Digital Video Disc) format.
  5. Xbox (2021)- Microsoft chose CES to introduce Xbox, its groundbreaking gaming console, which would go on to shape the gaming industry.
  6. Oculus Rift (2013)- The virtual reality headset was one of the highlights at CES 2013.
  7. Self-Driving Cars (Ongoing)- CES is the hub for automotive tech, with leading brands like Ford and Tesla showcasing their latest innovations at the event.
  8. Flexible and Foldable Displays (Ongoing)- In recent years, CES has seen the rise of flexible and foldable displays in smartphones and other devices.

Why Exhibit at CES?

As a tech exhibitor, why should you consider CES to demonstrate your product or service? Here are some of the top reasons-

Size and Scale

CES 2023 was spread across 2.2 million net square feet and had over 3,200 exhibitors. It attracted over 115,000 attendees from over 140 countries. The massive scale allows for a diverse range of innovations to be on display. Moreover, the biggest companies, including Microsoft, Google, Samsung, Sony, LG, ASUS, Nvidia, Intel, and many more, are regular participants.

Networking and Partnerships

CES is where industry professionals, investors, entrepreneurs, and tech enthusiasts come together. Whether you’re an established brand or a tech startup, CES provides a fertile ground for networking, partnerships, and investment opportunities.

First-Hand Experience

Even for attendees, CES offers a unique opportunity to experience the latest tech innovations before they become commercially available. From trying out the latest VR headsets to testing a self-driving car, it offers a hands-on experience.

[READ: How to Estimate Booth Traffic at a Trade Show?]

Media Coverage

As the largest tech event in the world, CES also receives extensive media coverage. The sheer scale of the event captures the attention of not only tech journalists but also mainstream media, ensuring that the latest innovations are showcased to a broad audience.  

What are the Key Tech Sectors at CES?

CES spans several sectors, showcasing innovation in industries like-

Consumer Electronics

CES brings the latest in consumer electronics, from smartphones and TVs to smart home devices. Some of the recent highlights include 8K televisions, wearable technology, and AI-powered assistants.


CES is a playground for robotics, with innovations for various applications like medical assistance and home cleaning. Notable developments include advanced industrial automation and humanoid robots.

Health and Wellness

Health tech has gained significant prominence at CES, featuring innovations like wearable health monitors, smart devices, and telemedicine solutions.

Artificial Intelligence

AI has been a dominant force at CES in recent years. Products and services range from smart assistants to AI-powered devices and vehicles.

Automotive Tech

Established brands and startups participate in CES to showcase their latest innovations. For instance, at CES 2023, Honda Mobility and Sony together introduced “Afeela,” a futuristic EV, and BMW unveiled the latest version of its “i Vision Dee,” a color-changing car.

How Much Does It Cost to Exhibit at CES?

Exhibiting at a world-renowned event like CES is expensive. But if you have the right trade show engagement strategy, it could prove highly beneficial for your business. A small 10x10 booth space at CES can cost anywhere between $15,000 to $20,000. Apart from this, you’ll also be spending on booth design, displays, staff, engagement, giveaways, marketing, and more.

It is generally seen that the overall exhibition cost is around 3X of the booth fee. So, if the space costs $20,000, you might end up spending $60,000 on the event. You can contact the sales team of CES at for more precise estimates.

[READ: How to Create a Trade Show Budget? (Sample Template Included)]

When is CES 2024 Scheduled?

CES 2024 is expected to be bigger and better than all of its previous editions. Here are the event highlights-

Planning to Exhibit at CES?

As the largest tech trade show in the world, CES should be on the radar of every tech company. If not as an exhibitor, you can consider visiting the event as an attendee to stay on top of all the latest innovations in the industry, connect with like-minded people, and build your network.

As an exhibitor, ensure you work on your booth engagement strategy to make a mark at the event. Audiencegage creates fun and interactive trade show games to help exhibitors with their event objectives. Whether you want to boost brand awareness, launch a new product, or connect with existing customers at CES, we can create custom games to help you excel.

Register for a free demo to see how we can help.

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