That’s it folks, the world’s mobile execs, tech journalists and PR people are flying home – Mobile World Congress 2014 is over. To reflect an industry that grows in importance every year, MWC 2014 was the biggest show yet, and the defining moment was the appearance of Mark Zuckerberg.
In previous years, MWC’s keynote has been delivered by a suit-wearer, but this year it was tech’s big celeb. Sporting a khaki green T-shirt and looking like an infinitely more cheerful version of the kid depicted in The Social Network, Zuckerberg had some big topics to discuss – specifically his vision for connecting everyone in the whole world to the internet. The reach of Facebook and now WhatsApp means you’d be mad not to take him seriously.
But where does expanding the reach of the mobile internet leave mobile operators? There’s no room for SMS revenue in Zuckerberg’s connected world, and operators will instead need to find ways to deliver more and more data capacity. The operators are notoriously slow to move, but with WhatsApp promising to also offer voice calls, data must be the operators’ priority. In the UK, 4G roll out has been slow – but standards setting for 5G is already on the MWC radar, with work on standards underway.
While mobile operators may be struggling to react to change, Shazam is one company that is taking the lead. With the news that it plans to make TV advertising its primary revenue source, Shazam has redesigned with a view to becoming a content platform, rather than a launchpad that takes users elsewhere. As we reported at our own Breakfast Club event back in November, the marketing opportunities Shazam’s work on TV advertising brings point to engagement figures that are off the charts.
Shazam’s evolution reflects a wider trend. Qualcomm told The Guardian at MWC that augmented reality (AR) is moving beyond its gimmicky reputation, and if the neverending curiosity about Google Glass is anything to go by, Qualcomm is not wrong. Mobile innovations that used to be interesting ideas or clever tools are starting to find their place in the world, and discovering that their place is quite important for consumers and therefore brands.
And, if you’d like to explore what mobile can do for your business get in touch with us at Yodel Mobile.