IT Month kicks off at Taipei World Trade Center

The China Post news staff

TAIPEI, Taiwan — IT Month 2013 opened yesterday, and will run through Dec. 8 at the Taipei World Trade Center (TWTC), with 350 exhibitors displaying their latest IT products at a total of 1,765 booths in Exhibition Hall 1 of the TWTC, according to event organizers. The annual consumer IT trade show is expected to attract a record 910,000 visitors during its nine-day run in Taipei. Following the Taipei exhibition, IT Month will move to the central city of Taichung from Dec. 13-18, followed by Kaohsiung in the south from Dec. 27-Jan. 1, before ending in Tainan with a Jan. 9-14 expo. The show focuses on four major features: smart handheld devices, near-field communication (NFC) mobile applications, smart wearable devices and sensor/control products. Visitors began to swarm into the venue yesterday afternoon, with many exhibitors offering various discount programs and employing show girls to launch stage activities and attract visitors.

Hot exhibits this year include a bridge camera offered by Nikon. The 8-megapixel camera, featuring a GPS recorder, wireless transmission and a screen that can revolve 450 degrees is being sold for less than NT$12,000 per unit, lower than its normal price by over NT$300, according to a Nikon distributor.

Another focus of attention by show-goers is combination mobile phone and tablet devices. The Asus Fonepad 7, featuring Intel’s Atom CPU and claiming to be the world’s most innovative combination of a mobile phone and tablet, is quite a sought-after item at the show, as it sells for only NT$9,000 per unit. In addition, telecommunications firms and big-name vendors of handheld and smart devices such as Samsung, Sony, HTC, LG and Nokia also joined forces to launch various incentives to promote their services and products.

Wearable devices and technology is also a spotlight at this year’s show. Among the exhibits of such devices are smart watches, which promise features that range from measuring users’ heart rates to voice control over cell phones linked with Bluetooth, according to the Taipei Computer Association, the event’s organizer. Since earlier this year, wearable devices have been making headlines, promising to become the next big thing as they attempt to change what it means to be “connected,” with the potential of extending the always-on connection even further.

The IT Month also served to boost ridership on the MRT’s new Xinyi line. The new line carried over 146,000 passengers as of 4:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon, with 34,000 passengers recorded at the Taipei 101/World Trade Center station.

The Xinyi Line, which was launched on Nov. 24, connects to the Tamsui Line at Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall Station and includes six other stops: Dongmen, Daan Park, Daan, Xinyi Anhe, Taipei 101/World Trade Center and Xiangshan.