Navigating Mobile World Congress 2015: Understanding the Impact on Your Business – Dan Hodges

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March 2015, Barcelona, Spain -- There has been a major change in focus over the last few years for Mobile World Congress. It is a shift in emphasis from the mobility of the single device to the experiences a person has across many devices and screens.

Mobile World Congress is a unique venue where the entire mobile ecosystem and the Internet of everything come together. It is increasingly a place where executives and brand teams go to understand connected cars, connected homes, the impact of technology on shopping and much more.

Navigating Mobile World Congress with its 1,900 exhibitors spread out in eight halls requires a focused approach. This year, Consumers In Motion Group created an immersive experience for CEOs, CMOs, senior brand and agency executives attending the event. This exclusive and immersive program included meetings with leading mobile and IOT ecosystem players, innovative start-ups, non-competitive brands, OEMs, along with private sessions with thought leaders and innovators.

Consumers in Motion Group vetted all the exhibitors and sessions and ranked them based on the business priorities of the executives attending. The process was designed to help them accelerate their understanding of mobile, IOT and related technologies on their businesses. We are already planning to expand and intensify our agenda for 2016 based on the success of this year’s program.

Here are some of the highlights from Mobile World Congress 2015:

Wireless charging technology: This eliminates the need for a plug to charge a mobile phone. It is already being piloted with retailers and QSRs in Europe. The initial test results are showing that spending by consumer’s increases when used in retail and QSR.

LTE Direct: This technology offers location targeting without the need for beacons.

Phillips LED Location Targeting: Phillips powered LED lights offer retailers, QSRs, banks and others the ability to target by location without the use of beacons. Using LED lights as beacons is a cost effective way to facilitate location technology at scale.

Payments : Changes in how retailers use technology to engage with shoppers promises to “rewire the commerce experience over the next three years,” according to Anuj Nayar, senior director of global initiatives with PayPal. Apple, Google and Facebook are joining messaging players and mobile operators in the land grab for the future of mobile payments.

Automobiles: Ford Motor Company introduced a smartphone app in Europe that allows drivers to remotely manage the charging of their electric vehicles. With the MyFord Mobile app, users can manage the status of their car, check the range and plan journeys to include charging stops.

Autonomous cars: In 2016, Nissan will launch vehicles that will allow drivers stuck in traffic jams to switch to autonomous mode, take their hands off the wheel and let the car handle navigation, driving and changing lanes. In 2018, the car could be put into autopilot on highways and will take care of everything.

Machine to machine : Industry analysts are predicting that the number of “things” connected to mobile networks could vastly exceed in-service mobile phones by the end of the decade. Machine-to-machine (M2M) and the Internet of Things (IOT) open up many exciting opportunities -- for traditional mobile players, new entrants and for society at large.

Dan Hodges is CEO and Founder, Consumers in Motion LLC. He can be reached

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