Who went to Stars Wars Celebration Europe? (We did!) This year’s convention was an incredible one, taking place in Essen and featuring some of the top talent of the series including Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher. The ultimate Star Wars fan experience, there were panels, signings, special screenings and exhibits – everything you could need to scratch that itch before the new films emerge. Last year’s Celebration VI event in Orlando Florida had 35,000 attendees, one of the biggest crowds yet, and the previous Celebration Europe convention held in London in 2007 saw 29,000 fan boys and girls in incredible outfits to discuss and appreciate the phenomenon that is Star Wars.
If you’re after a more business-oriented event, for five days in September the IFA consumer electronics convention in Berlin will be taking place, with some of the industry leaders in tablets, smart phones and smart TVs as well as washing machines and computers. Keynote speakers, presentations and sales schemes for electronics markets will take up the majority of the time, making this event necessary for leading companies. Leading media companies will be there, including CNBC, PC Mag, Stuff Magazine and the delightfully named Übergizmo.
If you can hang on until next year, the Mobile World Congress in the Fira Gran Via in Barcelona will take place in February. Keynote speeches will come from some of the industry giants, including Dennis Crowley, the founder and CEO of Foursquare and Stephen Elop, president and CEO of Nokia. For the technically minded this place is a haven, and with regular flights to Barcelona there’s no need to miss out on next year’s talks from the chairmen of Mozilla. The GSMA Seminar details a programme of education on mobile privacy, spectrum and disaster response within companies as well as app developer conferences.
Also taking place during February in Barcelona at the Mobile World Congress are the Global Mobile Awards, taking place from the 24th to the 27th. Although virtually no information has been released about next year’s event, 2013’s was great fun, with the winners being honoured in an afternoon celebration hosted by David Walliams, the British comedian and actor. Winners included Samsung for Best Mobile Enabled Consumer Electronics, Vodafone Foundation for the best use of mobile in emergency or humanitarian situations, and maybe unsurprisingly Facebook for best mobile app for consumers. Spanning charity, consumerism, sport and advertising, the awards go to the industry giants who have helped the world become a better place through innovation. If technology is your thing, February 2014 in Barcelona is THE place to be.