The official attendance figures for the giant annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last week are out and the news is troubling for the entire gadget sector.


Overall, attendance dropped by 23 per cent compared to last year. Journalists who covered the show noted, among other things, that taxis were readily available in contrast with other years, when the only way you could get a cab was to grab one in which another fare had just arrived.

Observers on the scene also noted a significant number of empty exhibitor booths for the first time in recent memory and several major players were conspicuous by their absence.

That’s all right in line with the tanking economy and the ascendance of the Internet as the channel of choice for vendors to reach consumers and retailers.

One major example of this trend is Apple Inc., which announced it would discontinue its direct participation in all trade and consumer shoes following one last hurrah at Macworld Expo 2009 last week.

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