IBTM: Top Ten Tech Innovations Set to Transform the Events Industry

IBTM: Top Ten Tech Innovations Set to Transform the Events Industry

Event professionals from around the globe recently flew to Barcelona for IBTM World, an annual three-day conference that bills itself as “the leading global event for the meetings and events industry.” There, the more-than 15,000 participants got the chance to network, share knowledge and resources and take in exhibitions. It’s a nice gig if you can get it – for those of us who weren’t able to make it, though, IBTM has something else to offer: A list of the top ten tech innovations that are transforming the events industry. Read on to learn about the best apps, solutions and technologies for designing your perfect event.


The winner of this year’s Technology and Innovation Watch Award, InitLive is a mobile app that works in tandem with an online cloud service to facilitate scheduling and communication between managers and staff. This clever little guy is able to automatically adjust staff schedules around conflicts as they arise and notify designated people at the appropriate time of their meeting or task. For those of you who are sick of running around, this is a great tool for organizing staff and volunteers.


This conference app offers instant offline access to meeting and event programs, as well as daily schedule building, a powerpoint slide viewer, a note-taking function, CME credit tracking and more. The app is specially designed for medical and scientific meetings that feature a number of information-rich presentations.

Loopd Inc.

Aimed at corporate events, this system relies on beacons placed around the event space, chips embedded in conference badges and a mobile app to track attendees’ physical location as they move through the event. At the end of the day, attendees can see where they spent their time and access related documents for each point, while marketers can see who visited their booths. It’s great for attendees, because they won’t have to constantly take notes or exchange business cards, and for vendors who want to follow up with potential customers or gather data for next time.


Forget all the headaches that come with translation headsets – this app does away with them by allowing attendees to listen to translations for talks on their phones or tablets. Users can simply select their language and plug in to live translations from interpreters on-site.


Built by professional event planners, EventCollab provides a cloud-based platform for event teams to communicate and share info such as schedules, documents and to-do lists. Organizers can create “circles” for each group, both in and outside their company, who they need to work with and access information about where each group is work-wise at a glance.


Sick of endlessly downloading and uploading info from one database to another? Then plug into CDEP (which stands for Conference Data Exchange Protocol), a “universal language for data exchange” created by Slidebox that allows different devices and technologies (for instance, a registration database, presentation software and mobile app) to sync up their data.

The Mash Machine

Created by The Mo’Joes, the Mash Machine is a nifty little device through which attendees can create music together. The intuitive interface is made up of tabletop and blocks, each of which represents a snippet of sound that can be combined and re-combined as you move the blocks around on the tabletop. The Mash Machine works as an ice breaker, a tool for team building, an interactive DJing device and more.

Path Event Learning Platform

This web-based learning management system created by Blue Sky Broadcast allows organizers to post content from educational events, including lecture recordings, e-learning presentations, and live webcasts for users to access on multiple devices. It also allows for online registration and reminders for virtual training programs.

SocialPoint Audience Engagement Platform

Want to up your audience engagement? Then check out this cloud-based software, which turns attendees into active participants by helping to facilitate live polling, Q&A sessions, surveys and more. You can even get your audience directly engaged with the material by turning it into a trivia game they can play on their phones. Pretty neat!


Help facilitate networking among attendees with this app, which uses Bluetooth to help users find, connect with and message one another. Users can even connect after the event through location-based networking. The app also offers features like auto check-in, delegate badge printing, moderator messaging for audience participation and more.

David Sonntag
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