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Apple on Tuesday announced that next year is the last year the company will exhibit at Macworld Expo. Moreover, instead of traditional keynote of Apple chief executive officer Steve Jobs, another high-ranking executive from Apple will host the opening of the trade show.

Apple has been steadily scaling back on trade shows in recent years, including NAB, Macworld New York, Macworld Tokyo and Apple Expo in Paris. Instead of Mr. Jobs, Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, will deliver the opening keynote for this year’s Macworld Conference & Expo, and it will be Apple’s last keynote at the show. Some believe that Apple is trying to refocus attention of the public from Steve Jobs to Apple brand itself due to Mr. Jobs’ alleged health problems.

Back in the days Apple used to introduce myriads of new products at Macworld as well as WorldWide Developers Conference (WWDC), but since business cycles and end-user demands are not aligned with trade-shows, Apple has been trying to introduce products when they are ready for the market rather than pre-announce them at various shows.

“Apple is reaching more people in more ways than ever before, so like many companies, trade shows have become a very minor part of how Apple reaches its customers. The increasing popularity of Apple’s Retail Stores, which more than 3.5 million people visit every week, and the Apple.com website enable Apple to directly reach more than a hundred million customers around the world in innovative new ways,” a statement by Apple reads.

The keynote address will be held at Moscone West on Tuesday, January 6, 2009 at 9AM. Macworld will be held at San Francisco’s Moscone Center January 5-9, 2009.

Tags: Apple, Macintosh

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