5 key takeaways from the worlds biggest mobile event


Every year at Mobile World Congress there is a lot of hype, brand noise and people with over 100,000 in Barcelona this year for MWC2016 at the world’s biggest mobile get together.

Appsafrica Advisory shares five key takeaways we learned from this years event:

1. The next big thing.
Virtual reality is the next big thing and was a major focus at Mobile World Congress 2016 with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg making a surprise appearance at Samsung’s press conference and many other vendors announcing launches. Samsung and Korean rival LG announced new 360 cameras and the latter is also bringing own VR headset to work with its new G5 phone, while Chinese-owned Alcatel will ship its new Idol 4S smartphones in a plastic box that doubles as Google Cardboard compatible VR viewer. read more

Facebook shared how it was bringing its streaming technology for 360 video to Samsung Gear VR in coming weeks

2. Bloodbath coming for device manufacturers
As one walks through vast halls of the latest tech and devices from established brands such as Samsung, HTC and others there are still 8 more halls filled with mobile brands and global manufacturers most people have never heard of and probably never will. Blackberry once a huge draw at MWC have been a casualty in recent years. There will be many more heading that way in a race to the bottom with many simply offering a commodity, with very little differentiation (unlike Oppo – see below), easily replicated at cheaper prices. Blackberry at least owned something with their own OS, many new devices built on Android with a “better camera” won’t cut it and many more failures to come.

3. Shoes just got clever
The internet of things (IoT) is nothing new with just about everything connected at MWC, this year cars were a major focus for many including Visa allowing payment from the car for petrol. Wearables again are nothing new however Samsung have in conjunction with its in-house startup, Salted Venture launched what could be the biggest revolution in footwear. Samsung’s IOFIT is embedded with sensors that can detect balance and posture at various parts of a foot especially for budding athletes. The trainers contain and application, which displays real-time data which the user can then evaluate and see how they can improve. read more

samsung trainers

4. Mobile charging is a thing of the past (nearly!)
Fast charging tech is a massive deal these days and Oppo the Chinese manufacturer launched it’s rapid phone charging solution ‘Super VOOC Flash Charge’ at MWC  and means Oppo’s new devices will be fully charged in just a quarter of an hour, while five minutes at the plug provides ten hours of talk time. Unfortunately Oppo doesn’t plan to release the Super VOOC tech to other mobile manufacturers, so it will only appear on Oppo’s own handsets but finally one of the biggest issues faced by mobile consumers globally is now getting sorted. read more

oppo - supervooc

5. Four Years From Now
Four Years From Now (4YFN) is the start-up element of MWC2016, housed at the old conference facility MWC is too big for. This event housed start-ups from all over the world. Appsafrica.com were kindly invited to join a panel with many start-ups pitching their ideas. While some great ideas were communicated, one over-riding theme became clear, a distinct lack of African involvement and very little presence of African start-ups. Visas, travel and costs are all possible answers but more needs to be done to put the African start-ups on the global map at the worlds biggest mobile event.

Lets see what Africa can do one year from now?

Appsafrica Advisory is a private consultancy service providing expert insight helping to build strategy, drive expansion and support operations for companies entering or expanding in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Appsafrica Advisory develops strategies and drives expansion for companies entering or expanding in Sub-Saharan Africa. We are a private advisory service providing expert insight, business development and implementation assistance for mobile web and technology ventures.