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Crystal-gazing into the future of events: Six disruptive technology trends to watch out for

2021 is the beginning of a new direction for the events industry. As the year unfurls, it brings with it revived hope and speculation about the future.

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While a majority of the event trends in 2020 revolved around virtual; cyber-to-site security, sustainability and heavy reliance on event technology will soon become the norm.

Similarly, buzzwords like diversity, inclusion, accessibility and the four Ps of the future (People-Profit-Planet-Purpose) will no longer continue to be just hot topics for discussion but would transition into an event planner’s reality.

Even more so, these aspects will reach a threshold of no return as demand will convert into expectation. In fact, meeting and event professionals will experience a completion of many of their sustainability and inclusivity initiatives in the ‘20s and ‘30s.

All of these changes will shake-up the events industry, but nothing will compare to the new frontier that awaits in 2040 – when the relationship between technology and humans will grow even deeper.

Here are some of the future game-changers:

#1 Thanks to state-of-the-art hybrid event platforms, hybrid events will successfully evolve and take the front seat, with technology allowing a degree of connectivity we can still only begin to imagine.

#2 Artificial intelligence will be one of the most powerful tools available for putting together world-class experiences in events. It will be the most-used technology, being relevant in almost every aspect of the event experience, from the logistical to the experiential.

#3 We are already seeing some fine examples of robot speakers. Therefore, it would be no surprise to think that the role of robotics in providing event-related services will increase manifold. This will allow event organizers to transcend boundaries that aren’t currently possible due to human limitations.

#4 Augmented reality will completely blend the distinction between physical and virtual, transforming the overall event narrative into an experience that can be felt in multiple ways. From branded holograms to AR-backed treasure hunts and other forms of gamification, the attendee experience would be revolutionized.

#5 Personalization will be at its peak. Already we are seeing the kind of in-depth analytics virtual and hybrid event platforms are able to provide. The data tracking and measuring mechanisms will only become more efficient in the years to come. Specifically, predictive analytics will allow event planners to anticipate what the audience wants even before they ask for it.

#6 The Internet of Things will further enable event organizers to get their hands on a treasure of attendee data, which will aid them in making informed decisions. Apart from attendee management, this technology will allow event organizers to enhance safety and security, provide easy navigation, intelligent lighting, smart catering and so much more.

Regardless of the numerous changes expected to arrive, the key thing to note is that technology has the power to accelerate and facilitate, but not alter the fundamentals of an outstanding event experience. Be it 2021 or 2040, the essence of the event industry will remain the same: this is an industry that is for the people by the people.

Author Bio: Falguni Jain is a content marketer for Hubilo, a virtual and hybrid event platform with notable global clients that include the UN, Siemens, GITEX, NYU, AWS and Tech in Asia.

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