3 Takeaways from Mobile World Congress 2017

Dr. Hannu Verkasalo, the CEO of Verto Analytics and one of our contributors, shares his insights about this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
The event delivered the usual press and industry spectacle. While MWC was once merely an annual event for the telecom world to meet and network and to initiate new business models and partnership ideas, today the event has grown to include more than 100,000 attendees, and exhibitors include everyone from major device manufacturers to ad tech platforms, mobile app publishers, analytics and optimization services, and more.

While previous MWC gatherings have been used as a platform for big announcements, such as Mark Zuckerberg’s campaign to provide free internet across emerging markets, or major product launches from the likes of Nokia and Microsoft, this year’s event was not dominated by a single headline-maker. Instead, several smaller (but no less interesting) stories emerged, such as Huawei’s push to use artificial intelligence to drive improvements in user experience and the utility of smartphones and device comebacks for both Nokia and Blackberry (the question is, are these just publicity stunts or is there actual potential?). I was also impressed by the efforts of the big telecom companies, from Verizon to Telefonica, into areas ranging from virtual reality to connected cars. But overall, I saw three major themes emerge from the conference that I feel will heavily influence mobile in the coming year:

  • Artificial intelligence, natural language processing, and machine learning;
  • Screenless interfaces: voice, sensors, and gestures intersect with virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR);
  • The internet of things and 5G;

Read the full article on Verto Analytics website.

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