The annual Mac conference, Macworld, which in the past has competed for the spotlight against mega trade show CES, has been moved from January to stave off shutting altogether.

This year's show will run for 3 rather than 4 days from 9 February till 13 February at the Moscone Center in San Francisco and for the first time include a Saturday as show runners IDG hope to woo the crowds rather than shut completely.

According to the show organisers the reason for the move is that "the old January date posed logistic hurdles for developers, who found themselves rushing over the holidays to complete code, ship products to San Francisco, and travel for the trade show".

"Moving the event to February is aimed at relieving some of that pressure", Paul Kent, vice president and general manager of Macworld Expo told Macworld magazine.

The show, which has run for over 10 years, has been the main Apple Mac event of the year seeing the launch of the iPhone in 2007 and the MacBook Air in 2008.

Last year Apple announced that it was pulling its support for the show by cancelling future appearances.

Meanwhile CES, in an attempt to capitalise on the move, is offering an Apple focused area at the Las Vegas show.

Many commentators believe that the show in its current format will struggle to keep going.

Kent told MacWorld magazine that he "believes organizers have a good foundation in place for next year’s show. Already, 10,000 people have registered for the event, and 90 percent of the faculty from the 2009 conference agreed to come back to the 2010 event. Exhibitor interest has also been strong".