Mobile World Congress, workbar

Mobile World Congress Debrief

At MassTLC’s
recent Mobile World Congress Debrief on March 7, 2014, an audience of mobile
app developers, infrastructure providers, investors and analysts gathered to
hear our panel discuss their observations from the 2014 Mobile World Congress
(MWC).   Nitzan
, Managing Partner at High Start Group, moderated the panel, which
  • Gene Dolgin, Senior Manager, Endeavour Partners
  • Meredith Flynn-Ripley, CEO, Heywire
  • Mads Lillelund, VP and GM,
    Bluesocket Business Group, ADTRAN
  • Victor Milligan, CMO, Nexage
  • Stuart Taylor, Managing Director,
    Service Provider Transformation Group, Cisco

All of
the panelists agreed that applications have now taken center stage at MWC.  Carriers have seen their influence at the
event decline and are now trying to attract attention to their services.    Among the big ideas that the panelist took
away from MWC are:
  • There
    is a widening divide between carriers and applications developers
  • Carriers
    are trying to sell services now and are no longer the center of the mobile
  • Every
    player on the periphery of mobile is struggling to understand the apps world
  • Europe,
    Asia and to a lesser extent the U.S. are working on city-wide mobile
    deployments (smart cities)
  • Ancillary
    spaces like healthcare are getting pulled into mobile but do not understand it
  • Big
    device makers are getting close to or surpassing the smaller plays in terms of
    UX/user design

observations from our panelists included:
  • GPS-driven apps, especially in the
    healthcare/exercise space, were big at MWC
  • IoT is finally real, after years of buzz about
    it; this is related to the smart cities trend
  • A large
    number of cars were present at the
    show, highlighting the integration of mobile apps in a traditional heavy
    manufacturing industry
  • M2M, even more than wearables, is experiencing the
    fastest growth.  Healthcare and
    automotive are two verticals that are driving M2M
  • Security was much discussed at MWC
  • Data
    analytics companies had a limited presence at the conference, but advertising was center stage

Mobile in the enterprise was also discussed.  The panelists felt that getting the right
apps and content under the enterprise’s control was the biggest issue for the
enterprise.  There was a belief that the
mobile enterprise strategy is moving beyond IT’s control.  Hyper-adoption by consumers is impacting
enterprises as workers bring their devices and apps into the workplace.  The upside for the enterprise is that costs
get passed onto employees who pay for their own devices and apps, and
productivity increases as employees tend to work more hours because they are
always connected. 
asked for predictions about what will be big at 2015’s MWC, our panelists had a range of answers, including: 
  • Mobile
  • Cars/wearables
  • Virtualization/software
    defined network solutions
  • In-home
    mobile apps
  • 5G
  • Monetization
    of apps independent of carriers
  • Use of
    data intelligence
  • Apps
    mirroring how users act and live. 

Thanks to everyone that joined us, to our moderator and
panelists and to the Workbar team for hosting us. 
Please feel free to share your observations about MWC or mobile
trends in the comments section.

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