CES 2022: Now Google, Intel, GM, Lenovo cancel plans amid rising Covid-19 cases

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2022 is scheduled to take place between January 5 and January 8 in Las Vegas. Ahead of the event, which was set to witness in-person in 2022, the tradeshow seems to be falling apart. Several tech companies have already canceled their in-person events in Las Vegas and more are joining the list. And the latest one to join the list is Google. The company today announced that it is pulling out of having in-person presence at CES 2022 amid the rising number of Covid-19 cases in the country. Instead, it is exploring virtual opportunities now.

“After careful consideration we have decided to withhold from having a presence on the show floor of CES 2022. We’ve been closely monitoring the development of the Omicron variant, and have decided that this is the best choice for the health and safety of our teams. We will continue to collaborate closely with both CTA and our partners to identify and support virtual opportunities, and we look forward to sharing the latest Google innovations with you all,” a Google spokesperson told BGR.in.

Google isn’t alone. Alphabet Inc’s self-driving car unit has also announced its change of plans for the upcoming tradeshow. “Based on quickly rising COVID-19 infection rates, Waymo has made the difficult decision not to participate in person at CES 2022. We are aiming to still virtually participate in some CES-related events,” Waymo wrote in a blog post explaining its decision and detailing how it plans to be a part of the event virtually.

Apart from Google, Intel and GM have also scrapped their Las Vegas plans amid the rising number of Covid-19 cases. GM CEO Mary Barra was scheduled to give a keynote speech at the event on January 5 during which time the company was scheduled to showcase its Chevrolet Silverado EV. The company is now planning to host its exhibit virtually. “We have decided to move to an all-digital approach with our activation at CES 2022 in January…We are continuing with our plans on Jan. 5 to share our significant company news, including the reveal of the Chevrolet Silverado EV,” the automaker said in a statement as Reported by Reuters.

“The health and safety of our employees, partners and customers  is  always a top priority…Our plans for CES will move to a digital-first, live experience, with minimal on-site staff,” Intel said in a statement.

Notably, these developments come a day after Lenovo announced that it was pulling out of the event in Las Vegas.

“After closely monitoring the current trends surrounding COVID, it is in the best interest of the health and safety of our employees, customers, partners, and our communities to suspend all on-site activity in Las Vegas,” Lenovo said in a statement adding, “While this is a change in plans, we are excited for you all to see our latest technology launching as scheduled on January 4th and January 5th.”

Similarly, TikTok has said that it would hold a virtual event for its partners and advertisers.

What are others doing?

Notably, Google, Intel, Lenovo and GM are not the only companies that have opted out of having in-person presence at CES 2022. Amazon, Twitter, Meta, Pinterest and iHeartRadio have already scrapped their CES 2022 plans. They’re planning to host online events now. Additionally, T-Mobile, which is one of the show’s title sponsors has also pulled out of having an on-ground presence. While the company will still be sponsoring the event, its CEO Mike Sievert will no longer be offering a keynote in-person or virtually.

On the other hand, Qualcomm, Sony Electronic, OnePlus, HTC, AMD and Samsung are still planning on having a limited presence at the event.

What are CES 2022 organisers saying?

As companies keep pulling out of having an in-person presence in Las Vegas next month, the Consumer Technology Association that organises CES every year has said that it will push forward with in-person events. In a Twitter thread posted late Thursday night, the organisers talked about the comprehensive safety measures that have been deployed to make the event secure.

“Given our comprehensive health measures, coupled with lower attendance and social distancing measures, we are confident that attendees and exhibitors can have a socially distanced but worthwhile and productive event in Las Vegas, or while experiencing it online,” the organisers wrote from the official CES account.

“We are also working with leading health experts in the state of Nevada who support the best practices we have put in place,” they added.

The post CES 2022: Now Google, Intel, GM, Lenovo cancel plans amid rising Covid-19 cases appeared first on BGR India.

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