Dubai: Tech-savvy shoppers and retailers are gearing up for true spring fever when the first Gitex Shopper Spring 2013 opens doors from April 3-6 at the Dubai World Trade Centre.
A bi-annual Gitex Shopper provides an additional platform for retailers to showcase the very latest in consumer electronics, especially as the rate of technology adoption among residents in the GCC region is exceptionally high and consumers expect to keep abreast of the latest trends.
“The spring edition is especially timely as it falls during the school holidays when we see an influx of regional tourists, with their families, who seek out the latest consumer electronics in Dubai,” Hemesh Chandavarkar, Director - Consumer Cluster, Exhibitions and Events Management at Dubai World Trade Centre, told Gulf News.
He said it is a chance for consumers to snap up great bargains on the latest electronic products and gadgets. All the major power retailers are present with substantially larger stands to provide more choice of products, more convenience and an all-round dynamic shopping experience. This is definitely an event that is not to be missed.
The region’s power retailers that have confirmed their participation include E-Max, E-City, Jacky’s Electronics, Jumbo Electronics and Sharaf DG. More than 20,000 sq. metres of exhibition floor space has been secured by retailers.
“Our experience in earlier years at Gitex Shopper has shown that the exhibition attracts visitors not only within the UAE but also from across the Gulf. Dubai is one of the world’s top 10 city tourist destinations and it welcomes more than 10 million visitors from different countries across the globe,” Chandavarkar said.
The fact that the Spring edition takes place during the school holidays adds another dimension to the show, he said, and added that allowing exhibitors to include family-focused activities on their stands, and showcase tech products that add to the learning and education of the younger, and increasingly tech-savvy generation.
Due to school holidays in Saudi Arabia, retailers expect to see several customers from Saudi Arabia at this event.
“The timing is ideal given that there is no big event between DSF & DSS and this shopper does cover the gap,” Niranjan Gidwani, Deputy CEO of Eros Group, said.
“Given that the spring edition is only four days long as against the eight days of the main Gitex, it would be unfair to make that comparison. We expect a healthy growth in April versus last April. We are looking for a growth of up to 50 per cent over last year,” Gidwani said.
According to the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) report, sales of consumer electronics in the UAE are predicted to rise to Dh14.58 billion by 2015 compared to Dh11.53 billion in 2011. The UAE’s consumer electronics market is set for strong growth with demand for goods and appliances likely to remain robust, the DCCI report stated.
“With the life cycle of most products shrinking and buying happening more at the time of product launches, it was becoming apparent that not all our customers were prepared to wait till October each year to shop. Hence the introduction of a second event made sense. In other matured markets like Singapore, for example, you in fact see similar events take place four times a year,” Ashish Panjabi, Chief Operating Officer at Jacky’s Electronics, said.
As this event comes at a time when many manufacturers transition between line-ups, “we can expect many clearance or end of life offers at this event,” he said.
What to expect
• Windows 8 products will be available at the Shopper for the first time this year.
• Consumers can find cameras and TV sets with the latest 4K technology delivering four times the resolution of HD.
• Computer devices controlled by voice, touch and even eye movements.
• Host of health and fitness devices to track physical activity, calories burned, food consumed and sleeps patterns.
• Interconnectivity is another big theme at the show as homes get even smarter.
• BlackBerry Z10, Samsung Galaxy S3, iPhone 5 and Nokia Lumia will be the star attractions in the smartphone category.
• There are high expectations that iPad Mini will attract a big attention.
• Smart TVs are also expected to be among the most sought-after products, especially the larger-sized screens of 46-inches or more.
• High demand expected in tablets, smartphones, digital cameras, LED and LCD panels, among other gadgets.