Highlights from Mobile World Congress 2017

This year’s global gathering, Mobile World Congress, was the largest and best-attended event for the mobile industry since 2009.  Over 108,000 attendees walked between the 9 halls and 8 outdoor spaces to see the latest and greatest on offer from 2300 participating companies.

Miss out? Not a chance! The Chelsea Apps Factory contingent braved this bastion of global mobile insanity, achieved daily step targets their desk-bound co-workers could only dream of and flew home with more cherished memories of phones, drones, ringtones and tech zones than you could shake a stick at.

Here’s our round-up of the technology themes and highlights you may have missed:

1. Enterprise Mobility
The theme came through loud and clear. Enterprise Mobility was everywhere. It was a clear message that this wave continues to build - heralding huge demand. Enabling organisations are tooling up and the opportunities in enterprise mobility are being further defined, recognised and validated. This really underpins Gartner’s prediction that by 2018 demand for enterprise mobile apps will outstrip available dev capacity by a staggering 5:1.

2. The Hype Around 5G
The 5th generation of wireless technology was talked about endlessly as though it were already ‘a thing’. With speeds that will blow the fastest broadband off the face of the planet and enable the connection of everything around us, there are unfortunately still many showstoppers. For instance the industry has yet to define what 5G actually looks like and even more importantly, how it will be enabled.
Our predictions? Despite fighting talk from Samsung boasting a 5G phone by the next MWC it could be at least another 24 months before we see real progress.

3. VR/AR/AI
It seemed that unless exhibitors were talking about VR/AR/AI and 5G on their stands they were just not playing the game this year.
Everywhere from Intel to Ford there were VR-zombies, 5g enabled smart home mock-ups and IoT devices. There’s a long way to go in relation to user uptake for virtual or augmented reality but it won’t be long before a decent chunk of the population will know what "immersive experience" really means. Mobile devices may supplement or even form an integral part of this experience.

VR/AR/AI

4. Nokia 3310 - The Phone That Keeps On Giving
The Nokia phone that does virtually nothing is back! Yes - we got to enjoy a reunion with the Nokia phone of our youth, the 3310.
Originally launched 17 years ago (what?!) admittedly it does now boast a few new features - a colour screen, it’s half the previous thickness and it still has its original game - Snake.  It also retains great battery life - one month standby time. A month! It will be interesting to see how well it does in the market.

Nokia 3310

Other points of interest from around the show included:

  • An IBM hosted an event called “Mobile and cognitive", which provided some interesting Watson case studies from Visa, Bragi (a hearables company), Kone and Vinesleuth.
Two interesting links will loop you into the tone of the session: Bragi: Bragi Dash plus IoT Kone: Listen in to lifts chit-chatting to each other, IoT-style. (This is sometimes temporarily offline, so there’s a short video explaining it here.)

Two interesting links will loop you into the tone of the session:
Bragi: Bragi Dash plus IoT
Kone: Listen in to lifts chit-chatting to each other, IoT-style.

(This is sometimes temporarily offline, so there’s a short video explaining it here.)

  • Xperia 4K HDR screens were impressive:
Xperia 4K HDR Screens
  • Intel’s face recognition within the Smart Home:
Intel's Face Recognotion

MWC 2017 was an amazing place to find out about next year’s technologies and to get a sense of the levels of innovation and optimism currently within the mobile market.
If you’d like to talk to us about any aspect of the event in more detail - or how we can help mobilise your business - simply call us or email contact@chelsea-apps.com