The TechCrunch SXSW 2016 Recap

0/22 Replay Gallery More Galleries

The TechCrunch SXSW 2016 Recap

For those with South by FOMO or who want to relive past week glories, we present to you images of this year’s SXSW festivities in Austin, Texas. Flip through the fun. You might even find yourself or a friend in there somewhere.


This is South By

The screen caption pretty much nails SXSW, “Geeks sharing ideas over beer.”

In this pic: Brady Forrest kicks off Ignite. The orignal speaker series is back up and running and came to SXSW this year. A couple of TechCrunchers even took part in the presentations.

For those unfamiliar, Ignite is an original speaker series held in hundreds of cities throughout the world that will let anyone speak about any topic for 5 minutes, using 20 slides.


South by VR

If there was one takeaway from SXSW 2016 it was VR. Virtual reality was everywhere this year. Throughout Interactive, Film and Music, brands used VR headsets to educate, entertain and promote.

Photo credit: Paul Hudson


IBM lounge

A worker fills in the equivalent of a life size adult coloring book on the wall at the IBM Interactive lounge.


TechCrunch Bash

Our annual SXSW TechCrunch party went down at Deloitte Digital’s Interplay Lab at the Palm Door this year on Austin’s infamous 6th Street. About 650 people came through to say hello and let musician Robert DeLong wow them with dance music made from video game controllers.


Gizmos and Gadgets

Galore. And there are a lot of opportunities to try new ones at SXSW. This little doodad can wrap around anything and comes with a built-in camera for recording in whatever spot its placed.


Upside Down Promotions

The major cable networks seemed to have gotten the memo that SXSW is now about the big brands vying for millennial attention. Many, including AMC’s “Preacher” (using this upside down church as prop) came to promote their new spring lineup.


Bitcoin Bootie

Spotted: a blockchain sneaker in the wild at Founders Fund party at Vortex.


SyFy Party

SyFy threw a fun shindig to promote it’s new show “The Magicians” on the last night of SXSW Interactive. I met up with some friends and to partake of the decadent desserts (cherry cordial with fried doughnut holes over ice cream). Sadly, there were no magicians.


Barack Obama made a visit

U.S. President Barack Obama spoke during South by Southwest Interactive with Texas Tribune editor Evan Smith (L) at the Long Center for Performing Arts in Austin, Texas on March 11, 2016. / AFP / MANDEL NGAN


But first Obama went to Torchy's for a taco

US President Barack Obama orders during a stop at Torchy’s Tacos on March 11, 2016 in Austin, Texas. / AFP / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)


Mr. Robot's World

USA Network built a life-size Coney Island replica Ferris wheel mimicking F-Society headquarters, an imaginary(?) place in Mr. Robot, a show about a guy who is either having a psychotic break or stuck in virtual reality (we’re really not sure), starring Rami Malek and Christian Slater.



Lucius performed all over Austin during Interactive and Music. I just happened to catch them playing for a tiny 20 person crowd one afternoon.


Food trucks

What would Austin and SXSW be without them? Pretty sure I’m made entirely of tacos now.


Wristbands for days

This software developer showed us just how much fun he’d been having during Interactive and part of Music.


Funny or Die

Funny or Die was back with a crowd pleasing music and comedy event showcasing several good acts at the Historic Scoot Inn, including Adam Devine, Anna Kendrick and Tracy Morgan.


Mc D's

McDonald’s returned for the second year as SXSW’s main sponsor to help us build our own burgers on-demand and give us virtual reality experiences in our Happy Meals.

Photo credit: Paul Hudson


SparkFun Electronics

SparkFun taught the basics of programming and soldering electronic parts during SXSW Create.

Photo credit: SparkFun Electronics


Brand Activation

A major part of the SXSW experience includes brands vying for attention and 2016 was no exception.

Pictured here: Cool Effect, a nonprofit startup on a mission to reduce C02 in the atmosphere, took pictures of conference-goers and turned them into gifs.


Samsung Lounge

Photo credit: Paul Hudson


Willie Nelson's ranch

Locals know Willie puts on a separate bluegrass and country music festival on his ranch in Luck, Texas in conjunction to SXSW. It’s about an hour’s drive out but is worth the drive if you are “lucky” enough to get a ticket. This year featured some of the legendary musician’s family members, including his two sons who play in a weird, experimental band called Insects and Robots (and sounds nothing like country).


Star Wars: Secrets of the Force Awakens

Director J.J. Abrams came to Interactive this year to promote his investment in ‘Jinx’ director Andrew Jarecki’s KnowMe app, to discuss behind-the-scenes of the latest Star Wars movie and talk about the new Star Wars documentary ‘Secrets of the Force Awakens,’ debuting publicly April 5, 2016.

Photo credit: Paul Hudson


St. Lucia and Big Boi

Media Temple put on the closing act once again this year, featuring Biz Markie as DJ, St. Lucia and Big Boi. Lines formed round the block hours before the performances.