@ CES: Apple Is Scouting The Competition

Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) famously avoids the biggest event on the tech industry calendar, and given the traffic on Paradise Road this morning you can’t exactly blame them. But that doesn’t mean Apple isn’t scouting the competition in person at CES 2012.

While wandering around the Central Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center Tuesday, I bumped into Greg Joswiak, head of iOS product marketing for Apple, just outside of Sony’s booth. Joz, as he’s known within the Apple community, grinned sheepishly upon being recognized by a reporter and stopped to chat for a few minutes.

Joswiak said he was interested in how other companies present their products at events such as CES, from things like booth layout and aesthetics to which products are highlighted within a company’s booth. He seemed less than impressed with Sony’s booth but didn’t really want to get into a lengthy discussion.

Apple hasn’t done any kind of trade show booth since it announced it was pulling out of Macworld after the 2009 show, but that doesn’t mean the company can’t learn anything from the way the rest of its competitors market their wares to industry professionals and the public. And it also allows for a first-hand report on which products or services are resonating with the crowds.

It’s not all that surprising that Apple would want to keep tabs on CES but I was a little surprised to see Joz, one of the higher-ranking executives in Apple’s hierarchy, walking the show floor like anybody else. His badge was strategically arranged as to cover over his name and company affiliation, however, a nod to Apple’s penchant for keeping a low profile.

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