Microsoft will wipe its yearly slate of conferences clean as the world struggles to reel in an ongoing pandemic caused by a novel coronavirus.
According to a report from ZDNet, the tech giant confirmed that both internal and external events scheduled throughout the rest of the year will be going digital-only.
‘In light of the challenges presented by Covid-19, we are adjusting our event calendar and strategy,’ the company told ZDNet.
‘For the remainder of 2020 we are embracing the opportunity to experiment with new platforms to provide our partners, customers and developers the highest quality, digital-first experiences.’
Microsoft will call off in-person events for the coming year amid an ongoing coronavirus pandemic that is forcing people around the world to remain isolated
That includes major events like like Microsoft Ignite which was scheduled to take place in September and acts as a springboard for developers and other IT professionals.
Already Microsoft had announced the cancellation of its Build developers conference as well as its Inspire conference slated for July that usually attracts about 40,000 attendees.
The company reportedly hasn’t decided whether events scheduled for the first half of 2021 will also go digital-only.
The move mirrors those by other major tech companies including Google and Facebook.
Google has already called off the remaining plans for one of its biggest conferences of the year, its annual I/O conference in San Francisco.
In a statement earlier this month, the company said I/O won’t be taking place ‘in any capacity this year’ after cancelling an in-person conference earlier this month.
‘A GoogleIO update: Out of concern for the health and safety of our developers, employees, and local communities — and in line with “shelter in place” requirements by the local Bay Area government — we sadly will not be holding an I/O event in any capacity this year,’ wrote the company on Twitter.
Google had previously said that it was looking into an ‘alternative format’ for the conference – most likely an online-only event.
Facebook announced last month that it was canceling its convention, the F8 developer’s conference, which was due to take place in San Jose, California, in early May.
Facebook’s Konstantinos Papamiltiadis cited ‘growing concerns’ around the virus, leading the tech giant to cancel the ‘in-person component’ of the conference.
Last year the event had drawn crowds of around 5,000 visitors.