IoT Events Q1 2019: Mobile World Congress 2019

This series of posts will take an overview of IoT Events from Q1 2019.

World’s largest mobile industry event – Mobile World Congress was organized by the GSMA (Groupe Speciale Mobile) from February 25th – February 28th 2019. It was held in the mobile world capital – Barcelona.

The event themes included : 5G, Artificial Intelligence(AI), Industry 4.0, Immersive Content, Disruptive Innovation, Digital Wellness, Digital Trust and The Future.  

This year, more than 109,000 visitors from 198 countries attended MWC2019.

Courtesy: MWC Barcelona 2019

Cristiano Amon, president of Qualcomm took this stage to announce that 5G is here and it’s roll-out will be 10x faster than 4G. Further, it was announced that there are plans to release Snapdragon platform with integrated 5G. This will definitely make it cheaper and easier for manufacturers to integrate 5G into more devices.

5G will bring a wide range of benefits to the users – streaming video will become more like streaming music, all the apps relying on online services will run faster and smoother.

While Apple is not expected to make any announcement about 5G until 2020, it really lands on the Android ecosystem.

Adding to this, Bob Borchers, VP marketing platforms and ecosystems at Google said, “Qualcomm and Android, with other partners, are going to reinvent the future.”

Speaking of AI, José María Álvarez-Pallete López, chairman and CEO of Telefonica talked about how AI-driven networks will get smarter. He revealed that mobile data traffic is growing at more than 50 percent every year.

Asking the telcos to be responsible, he said, “We need to have more sustainable business models. We need to do business in a financially, in socially responsible and environmental way. The opportunity is amazing.”

GSMA Director General Mats Granryd highlighted how AI and intelligent connectivity can help in healthcare. He explained, “Tuberculosis kills more than any other disease in the world — 2000 people will die today from it. With Big Data, we can predict where the next outbreak will happen, and put up treatment centers. The possibilities for intelligent connectivity are endless. Doctors can also perform real time remote surgery.”

Using the MWC platform, SAP Leonardo Internet of Things(IoT) capabilities were unveiled. SAP tagged Leonardo IoT as “all-encompassing technology that generates and drives digital transformation for Industrial IoT and Industry 4.0.”

In addition to this, SAP announced cloud-to-cloud interoperability of SAP Leonardo IoT with Microsoft Azure IoT Hub, which will provide customers a choice of connectivity and device management.

Furthermore, SAP said it plans to offer similar interoperability with other partners in future.

Digital Wellness really stood out the most this year at MWC. Many french startups are creating ‘empathetic’ AI software to help families take care of their elderly and vulnerable relatives.

Under Digital Wellness, biggest topic was of restoring ‘data citizenship’ in the age of mass data breaches and waning customer trust in the tech giants. Eric Leandri, CEO of Qwant stated that in Europe, we are treated as data citizens whereas in USA, customers over the years have been treated as consumers.

To offer the attendees some extraordinary immersive content, there was your friendly neighbourhood Spiderman! Sony Pictures Virtual Reality (SPVR), Nokia and Intel joined forces to create this amazing immersive experience. Thanks to 5G technology, media and entertainment industries can foresee new business opportunities now.

“5G will take us beyond traditional uses of media,” said Sandra Rivera, Senior Vice-President, General Manager, Network Platforms Group at Intel.

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