Microsoft at the Gadget Show Live - by Mohit Dhagat and Tom Finlayson
The Gadget Show on Channel 5 TV is a popular technology show which has been running since 2003. Having launched in 2009 in Birmingham it has since quadrupled in size –itis nowone of the most exciting, dynamic live exhibitions in the UK showcasing the most innovative new technologies, inventions, toys machines and gadgets. It has become a ‘must see’ exhibition experience for ‘techies’ and gadget fans nationally.
For Christmas 2013, Windows were proud to be the headline sponsor of the event (we’llalso be the headline sponsor of the Gadget Show Live in 2014 at the NEC in Birmingham). Microsoft Surface also sponsored the 2000 capacity Super Theatre which bring to life the TV show on stage for the event audience. As part of this sponsorship, we – along with the rest of this year’s Microsoft interns – were given the opportunity to volunteer and be a part of the Gadget Show itself. In total, there were seven of us involved over the weekend to help demo and present some of the great Microsoft products that we’ve recently launched.
’The Gadget Show Live was a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate my enthusiasm for Bing It On whilst being able to speak to people who possessed such different life experiences and outlooks.’ – Shireen Patel
Microsoft had the biggest single exhibitor stand at the event, which was decked out with devices ready for showing off. We had brand new 2nd generation Surfaces, fancy new 3D printers, a fun zone area with Fresh Paint, Xbox Music and Windows 8 games on display, Nokia Windows Phone stations as well as stations showing off new devices from Toshiba and Lenovo. SkyDrive and Bing were also being demoed with Bing It On and SkyDrive’s Christmas Photo Booth. Of course, one of the prevailing reasons for the stand was to show off the new Windows 8.1 operating system coupled with the new and exciting devices being produced by Microsoft and its partners. As well as this, we also had an Xbox One**SUV giving the public the opportunity to interact with the new deviceahead of the console’s official release.
Being involved with The Gadget Show Live at Christmas, as well as other events, has given us an insight into the world of marketing that we otherwise would not have experienced in our day-to-day roles. Seeing the way Microsoft’s devices and services were being showed off in real life situations was incredibly enlightening for us. It has also been a great opportunity to explain the differences and improvements that Windows 8.1 brings to the computer market while getting real time feedback from potential consumers.
‘Working at the Gadget Show was a brilliant opportunity afforded to me as a result of being an intern at Microsoft. Despite having only worked for the company for four months I was demoing the Windows 8.1 operating systemto a large number of consumers and was trusted to be one of the consumer facing Skydrive team. This experience gave me greater confidence in presenting and demoing in the future whilst being a thoroughly enjoyable day.’ – Connor Jipps
Other events that we’ve had the opportunity to become involved in have included the 21st Raindance Film Festival (Europe’s leading independent film festival), Eurogamer Expo 2013 (the UK’s biggest games show), O2 Campus Party 2013 (the biggest electronic entertainment event in the world) and launch events for Microsoft’s new devices and services – such as the Surface 2 Launch event in Trafalgar Square. The way we, as technical interns, have got involved with these events is through volunteering our help to the marketing and events teams who organise and run these experiences. By helping out they provide us with a great opportunity to get to know the products and services that Microsoft are producing while giving us a chance to evangelise the company we work for to members of the public and other businesses.