NAB Show shelved over coronavirus concerns

After weeks of insisting the show would go on, the NAB Show is changing its tune as coronavirus worries continue to mount.

“In the interest of addressing the health and safety concerns of our stakeholders and in consultation with partners throughout the media and entertainment industry, we have decided not to move forward with NAB Show in April.” reads a statement on the show website that was also posted to the show’s social media.

The decision comes just hours after the World Health Organization gave the go ahead to call the outbreak a “global pandemic.”

The show had been scheduled for April 18 to 22, 2020, at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Meanwhile, NAB is exploring ways to make portions of the show experience available digitally.

The October 2020 New York is not affected by the decision around the Las Vegas show. 

In its initial NAB announcement about the show’s cancellation, NAB did not have an answer about exhibitor, sponsorship or attendee fees.

“We are working through a number of alternative options. We understand the urgency for decisions to be made, but we are in an unprecedented situation and ask for your patience…” reads a FAQ. The page directs exhibitors to communicate with account representatives. 


The announcement follows the postponement of Promax Europe and ConnectechAsia, a broadcast convention and show in Singapore. Austin, Texas’ SXSW was canceled earlier this month.

Countless other conferences, festivals and shows have been canceled around the globe over coronavirus worries.

Large trade shows, conferences and similar events have become a particular concern for officials because they involve a large number of people gathering close together after traveling from around the globe.

NAB had been maintaining it would move forward with the show (with a “no handshake” policy) as planned even as other conferences and shows canceled or postponed. 

NAB had already had multiple key exhibitors, including Adobe, Ross and Avid, speakers and attendees drop out over coronavirus concerns.

Multiple conferences and events scheduled to coincide with NAB Show, including Avid’s user conference and PBS’s TechCon were previously canceled. 

Many corporate attendees likely would be barred from attending, at least in an official capacity, by company guidelines limiting travel and large gatherings.

NewscastStudio has been a media partner of NAB Show for several years.