MWC 2017 Rocks Barcelona

By: Larry Loeb| - Leave a comment


A trade show for the telecommunications industry, Mobile World Congress (MWC) has grown over the years to attract more than 100,000 annual attendees. There will be 2,200 exhibitors at the show this year, each with a product or point of view, so there will be no shortage of shiny things to gawk at. MWC 2017 is an event for anyone interested in enterprise mobility, including those in adjacent industries who want to discover how mobile technology can benefit their sectors.

MWC 2017: Big Players Show Up

It’s also important enough of a show for company heads to present a keynote or two, including Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings, NEC’s president Takashi Niino, John Stankey of AT&T and new U.S. Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai. The players in telecom are out in force for MWC.

And that’s exactly why any chief information officer should consider attending. The concentration of big players is high — and they’re the ones that can help get things done. There are never guarantees, but the networking potential is clear.

The sessions offer new perspectives and context for emerging technologies. By focusing on areas relevant to the enterprise, a CIO could gain additional knowledge about a subject that may be difficult (and less exciting) to gather by other means. Not only that, the audience for a talk will likely consist of professionals with a shared interest in the subject. Paying attention to the questions they’re asking could give a CIO a chance to gather some competitive intelligence.

Innovative Sessions

One innovative technology that will be explored at MCW 2017 is graphene, a material that may affect the future of telecom. Not only will Nobel Laureate Konstantin Novoselov talk about the unique properties of graphene, but attendees can also gain insights from companies who have already successfully implemented the substance. The session will explore the relationship between graphene and the Internet of Things (IoT) in a talk entitled, “From Datacom to IoT, Enabled by Graphene” lasting all day on Thursday, March 2. Who knew chaining carbon like this could cause such a fuss?

The arrival of 5G networks will also be a hot topic. The session “5G Beyond the Hype: Value and Building Blocks” on Tuesday afternoon will look at the practicalities of 5G, which has a projected rollout of 2020 in Korea and Japan. The speakers will explore the qualitative differences between 5G and forerunner technologies. By showcasing the significance of 5G, they’ll highlight the progress that has been made toward putting this new mobile network in place.

On Wednesday, “Enabling IoT Platforms” will be considered. With IoT projected to grow to huge numbers in 10 years, we’ll need platforms to create an IoT ecosystem across industry sectors. The session will focus on how IoT solutions can create synergies between use cases to foster economies of scale, as well as identifying the core network technology that will meet rising demand. Speakers include Patrick Zhang (president for HuaweiTechnologies’ marketing and solutions department), Deon Newman (VP of marketing and IoT at IBM), Raj Talluri (senior VP of product management for Qualcomm) and Vicente Munoz (global IoT chief officer at Telefonica).

In addition, on Wednesday, a companion session on “Enabling IoT Security” will explore best-practice security strategies for IoT deployments, looking at the security impact on different network layers and exploring cross-industry consensus on security for devices, sensors and users. The session speakers include Avast CEO Vince Steckler and Nikos Isaris, the European Commission’s deputy head of unit for IoT.

It’s easy to see from these sessions that MWC 2017 is far broader in scope than just the latest in snazzy mobile phones. Any CIO will find that attendance at the show can widen their viewpoint on the effects that emerging technologies and products may have on their business.

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