LAS VEGAS — Mother Nature spoiled Google’s coming out party at CES, as heavy rains forced the search giant to shut down for the day the gargantuan outdoor booth that has come to represent its intention to dominate the colossal tech conference.
When GeekWire arrived at the booth this morning, we were told a press event coinciding with the kickoff of the big convention was delayed indefinitely due to an intense downpour. Google crews were covering up the booth to do their best to protect it and employing big buckets to catch the buckets of rain.
A Google spokeswoman emailed press attendees this morning, saying that the booth will be closed for the opening day of CES.
“Due to concerns for safety around the parking lot, our booth will be closed for the day, including our press preview,” the spokeswoman wrote.
Google’s presence here in Las Vegas has been a big theme in the days leading up to the commencement of CES. The booth, a flurry of announcements and branding on everything from the monorail to giant LED signs at various casinos were evidence of the search giant’s commitment to making a statement this week.
Google’s main rival in the digital assistant world, Amazon is out en masse at CES as well. Amazon’s booth is also outside and is expected to open as planned this morning. Amazon’s presence is a little more modest, featuring a smart home trailer, the Treasure Truck and a display of various Alexa devices.
With the two tech giants volleying big announcements back and forth this week, we’d like to think today’s weather mishap for Google unfolded like this:
Rain was in the forecast Tuesday, but weather services predicted mostly showers and light rain throughout the day. Weather forecasts call for more rain into the late afternoon Tuesday.
And meanwhile, this was the scene at a parking garage near our hotel: