Today marks the end of this year’s Mobile World Congress. Couldn’t make it to Barcelona to get the news live? Here are some highlights.
What is Mobile World Congress?
Mobile World Congress is an exhibition and conference between leaders in the mobile industry. It consists of mobile network operators, device manufacturers, service providers, and developers. The focus for the event is the worldwide market.
Apple and Microsoft represent the largest names to not have exhibits for the event. Microsoft did send representatives that displayed Windows Phone 8, and other companies showcased their Windows 8/Windows Phone 8 products. They just did not have a formal booth. Apple did not attend nor had anyone to show off their products. That is normal behavior for Apple.
Mobile World Congress 2013 Highlights
- Mozilla has partnered with 17 mobile operators to bring Firefox OS devices to their platform this year. The also announced that LG and Huawei will join Alcatel One Touch and ZTE as device manufactures.
- LG has no plans to support Windows Phone 8.
- Facebook now considers itself a mobile company. 70% of their user base now accesses them through a mobile device, compared to 40% through a desktop. Mobile advertising now accounts for 23% of revenue. This is especially noteworthy considering they did not have mobile advertising until last year.
- Samsung announced HomeSync. HomeSync is an Android based competitor for Apple TV. It is a 1 TB drive that allows 8 accounts to sync photos, videos, and apps. Users can upload or download content from Android or stream from other Samsung products.
- LG has purchased webOS and will use it exclusively in smart TVs.
- Foursquare declared themselves the location layer of the Internet. They have found that 20% of users of the Explore tab check-in to a new place. This has led to one million merchants paying for access to dashboards for the site. Foursquare also announced that they merchants may now pay to drive customers to locations.
- Google is now aiming for 2-5 daily transactions with Google Wallet.
- Smartphone subsidies are they key reason for the increase in mobile broadband usage in Latin America.
- Dropbox’s founder was vocally critical of Apple. He criticized them for being “religious” about their products and feels they place “bizarre limitations” on cloud services. He then praised Samsung for working with them to delivery a positive experience despite the fact that they Samsung has a competing service.
- 3G/4G usage will grow to 50% by 2017 as 2G usage declines.