September 28, 2012

LeWeb 2012 in the City of Lights and Tech

Ayelet NoffAh, Paris, the city of lights, love and Internet innovation. Yes, folks, it’s that time of the year again for us to gear up and see what’s up with LeWeb Paris on Dec. 4-6, organized by the couple that never ceases to amaze me with their energy, Geraldine and Loic Le Meur.

This year’s LeWeb Paris is about the Internet of things.

What does that mean exactly? The subject of the conference is how Internet-driven devices are taking over the world. We all know and are addicted to the mobile revolution. Facebook reports that 50 percent of its traffic comes from mobile devices and that was back when their app was crappy, so who knows where it is now. Google reports that not having a mobile site severely hurts a business’s conversions. All of this ties in directly to the theme of the conference, which speaks of a future (or maybe even a present) in which the PC is not the main device to access the Web, and that is only going to grow. According to current estimates, by 2020 there will be 50 billion Internet devices on the planet.

This will create a hyper-connected world beyond our wildest dreams: Every aspect of our world will be socialized, digitized and connected, and bottom line, it’s going to bring people closer together and help make the world a smaller place. This makes for an interesting subject, considering not only the surging rise of smartphones tablets and other gadgets but also of smart homes, smart appliances and connected toasters (which will, eventually, take over the world).

Confirmed speakers so far include:

  • Kevin Systrom, Instagram
  • David Marcus, PayPal
  • Phil Libin, Evernote
  • Tony Fadell, Nest Labs
  • James Park, Fitbit
  • Marcus Schappi, NinjaBlocks

In line with the theme, most of the speakers come from mobile ventures, some of them, such as Evernote and PayPal, play a big part in making our everyday lives more connected, by making everyday tasks easier, just by making them more connected.

What else happens in this magical city? Well, the LeWeb 2012 startup competition will take place once again. Sixteen emerging startups with exciting products will duke it out on stage for the crowds and the judges’ affection. This is one of the more prestigious startup competitions around, so make sure to apply, or just watch the live stream.

Eligible startups that:    

  • Have less than €1.5M (US$2M) of investment
  • Address either consumer or business users
  • Will launch the company and/or product at LeWeb Paris 2012

LeWeb has always been a personal favorite of mine of all the conferences on techies’ calendars. It has a different, positive vibe of innovation and spice, unlike any other conference of the year. If you have the ability, you should definitely attend. This is a must-attend event. Ayelet Noff is a partner in and founder and Co-CEO of Blonde 2.0, an award winning digital PR agency with branches in Boston and Tel Aviv. Contact Ayelet via The Blonde 2.0 website , email, or follow her on Twitter and Google Plus.

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