While not very familiar to the world of pleasure boaters, the industry behind boating that brings you all of the technology, connection, and innovation is shown at IBEX, best known as the International Boat Builders Expo and Conference. It’s an exciting show and were glad to be here. Today’s 2016 show located in Tampa Bay, FL has opened to record numbers.
Hardin Marine is that friendly face that PBN looks to so often for the latest in what’s happening and we noticed they were the only performance manufacturer we recognized amongst a sea of marine technology leaders. Jeff Stull of Hardin pointed out the change in today’s boats being more of a social environment has them designing new products that crossover to different boating segments.
If you ever wondered why such a shift in boating, and the types of boating are happening then a trip through this monstrous venue will clear your thought process as this show is full of what has launched the wake board and center console market into blistering numbers we haven’t seen in years. The insight and knowledge that IBEX has on display is showing that innovation and new technology are driving today’s market.
No longer is a consumer willing to settle for decade old power plants and gauges, controls and dashes that haven’t changed in thirty years. No longer will “Lipstick” on that same old hull that hasn’t seen an innovation in its construction or running surface suffice. Today’s new boats are FULL of innovation from material improvements to flat iPad style touch screen dashes as well as numerous driver assistance options. We are finally building boats that make the older boats look like they’re from a bygone era. If you haven’t looked at a new boat and the result of all of these innovations you’re missing something great.