OFC/NFOEC Report: Day 1 'Dismal'
SAN DIEGO, March 25, 2009 -- The word, it would seem, is "inauspicious." Day one of the OFC/NFOEC 2009 exposition has come to an end and exhibitors are left scratching their heads wondering where all the attendees were. One of them described the showing today as "dismal." If nothing else, she said, buzz about new 40 Gb/s technologies should have brought people in - if not to buy then at least to see what the fuss was all about. But the traffic just wasn't there.
Nor were the exhibitors, apparently. The word on the street - or on the floor, anyway - is that the number of booths is down by at least 60 from last year (please note: this is rumor only, not an official figure). Whatever the count, several rows in the hall remained unoccupied.
Where was everybody? Surely, the spiraling economy played a role in the relatively anemic turnout. Many companies no longer have the money to attend trade shows; some might have so few employees these days there'd be no one left to mind the store if they sent anyone. One has to wonder, though, if this bodes ill for the fiber optic market generally. Is it possible that the market is not gearing up for a resurgence as many have hoped?
contributing editor, Photonics Spectra
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