A Proud Moment For Futurelooks at COMPUTEX 2008

Probably one of my proudest moments at COMPUTEX this year was seeing Futurelooks recognized as a site that matters. While perusing the FOXCONN booth, I noticed what appeared to be a Futurelooks award logo featured on one of the large walls of the booth.

As I neared the booth, I could make out a Futurelooks’ Editors Choice award. We gave this award to their 9800GTX Video Card earlier this year and thought it was a very solid performer. However, I never expected our award to be important enough to earn a space on a large prominently featured display wall at an international trade show. I was so proud! However, this recognition would not have been possible without the hardwork of Futurelooks Hardware Editor, Jason Landals. I’d like to thank him for producing such an outstanding review that got the attention of one of the largest OEM component manufacturers in the world. It was his review of this card that got us this recognition. Jason couldn’t make it out to COMPUTEX this year, but next year, I’ll make every effort to ensure that he’s on the plane and in Taipei for the only computer show that matters.

Why is this show so important? If you think about it, all the engineering and development of potential products is done in Taiwan and many proofs of concept are shown there. Based on the interest or the number of orders they get on a product, a manufacturer can decide whether or not a product even goes to production. If you’re here, you get to see things that won’t be reality until CES or even CeBit. Although I love CES, by the time you get there you’re already looking at old stuff, at least on the computer hardware side. That show really is about new consumer electronics, not so much about new computer hardware.

For any site that covers computer hardware, being at COMPUTEX is important. It means that you’re serious and that you want to be on the cutting edge. Most importantly, it means you matter and the fact manufacturers feel the same way too by proudly displaying your award logo means that your opinions and feedback are important to the development of future products. It’s funny, but I noticed a couple sites trying to get in on the action without being there by trying to “Regurgitate” press kits. How can you form a real opinion of a product on a press kit? Also, much of the information on early product is not included in those kits. For example, during my meeting with Thermaltake, they showed me something that won’t see the light of day till CES 2009, but more likely, CeBit 2009. It was so secret, proof of concept stage, that I had to convince the CEO of the company to show it to me. It was a great scoop and you can only find out this stuff if you’re there.

Even though it’s only been a few days after the show, I’m already starting to see the impact of our presence there. I’m starting to get requests to take product reviews, straight from Taiwan, bypassing the North American wait. I also spoke directly to the people that sign the checks when it comes to advertising dollars and where to spend it. You can bug your local reps all you want, but it always pays to talk to the boss and build that relationship directly because at the end of the day, where does the money come from?

So I have to ask, knowing that webmasters from other sites occasionally stroll by here, what is stopping you from coming to the only show that matters for the latest Computer Hardware? If your only answer is cost, then my friends, I have to tell you, it’s costing you more to stay on the sidelines.