After attending many years’ worth of BlackBerry World™ conferences – not to mention countless other huge events like CES, Mobile World Congress and our very own BlackBerry® DevCon – it’s fair to say that we’re old pros at the whole conference-attendance thing. Now that BlackBerry World 2012 is on the horizon (coming up fast on May 1-3rd 2012, in Orlando, Florida), we thought it’d be a good idea to compile a list of all the knowledge we’ve gained and tips we’ve learned for ensuring that your BlackBerry World experience is useful, educational, and above all – fun!
Whether you’re a BlackBerry World newbie or a seasoned conference veteran, we think you’ll be able to take away at least a few ideas from the below. Of course, if you haven’t yet registered for BlackBerry World 2012 and still need to be convinced, give this video a watch first:
Now, read on for our top survival tips, and don’t forget to register for BlackBerry World if you haven’t yet done so:
- Battery swap stations are available for you, but always carry a charger or spare battery just in case. You could purchase a spare battery or an external charging kit or get a USB to AC adapter that can be used with your USB cable to recharge on the go.
- Make sure you have a good supply of business cards with up-to-date information on them to hand out to new contacts. If you and the new contact each have one of the NFC-enabled BlackBerry smartphones with the latest BlackBerry® 7 OS update, use BlackBerry® Tag to exchange your contact information with each other.
- Review your current sound and alert profiles – you don’t want to be the one whose ringtone goes off in the middle of a session!
- Set up a BBM Group for BlackBerry World attendees in your contact list, and use the group to organize meeting times/places as well as swap thoughts on the best sessions to attend.
- Use the Calendar on your BlackBerry® smartphone or BlackBerry PlayBook tablet to set reminders for sessions that you want to attend. (The BlackBerry PlayBook tablet calendar even has social integration, so you can keep track of which of your colleagues and friends are going to the same sessions!)
- If you’re on a BlackBerry® Enterprise Server, you can set your Out Of Office using your smartphone. Here’s how to do it for users with BlackBerry® 7, BlackBerry® 6, and BlackBerry® 5.
- During the conference breaks, make sure to load up on free snacks – and stock up so you’ve got a supply handy throughout the day.
- Download apps like Poynt (for BlackBerry smartphones and BlackBerry PlayBook tablets) and Foodspotting for BlackBerry to help you find the perfect local place for a business dinner or team get-together.
- There will be plenty of after-parties and chances to mingle with other attendees, but be sure to drink water throughout and try to get at least 8 hours of sleep per night. We know you’ll be busy – especially those of you working – but making sure you’re hydrated and well-rested is important!
- If you’re not on a BlackBerry® Enterprise Server, you can install BlackBerry Protect on your BlackBerry smartphone, just in case you accidentally leave your device somewhere you can’t remember. If you can’t locate your BlackBerry smartphone, you can use BlackBerry Protect to wipe your data remotely. Check out Jason’s post on BlackBerry Protect tips, and be sure to also read Ty’s post for five reasons why you should be using BlackBerry Protect.
- Take every opportunity possible to network and meet with new people, whether in your industry or not. The Solutions Showcase is a perfect spot to meet conference sponsors and other industry professionals.
- If you’re looking to network with friendly faces, definitely stop by our Social Media Desk – we’ll have staff handy to engage in random giveaways throughout the day. Keep an eye on @BlackBerry4Biz during the event for more details! (Also be sure you have foursquare installed on your smartphone so you can check into the Social Desk, find friends, meet people and find out about specials in the area.)
- As you’re en route to BlackBerry World (hopefully using BlackBerry® Travel to keep your trip organized!), take a moment to determine your business or personal goals for attending, then make a list of what you want to learn or accomplish. Being focused on your end takeaway will help you get the most out of your experience.
Those are just a few bits of conference-attendee wisdom we’ve accrued over the years. If you’ve got any handy tips for having a successful BlackBerry World experience, let us know in the comments!