6th InfoCom Mobile World Conference
Mobile Changes Everything: The X factor!
Data is on the move!
Many centuries ago, Heraclitus said «Τα πάντα ρει», which means that nothing stays still and “everything is on the move”. If we tried to describe the current situation in the ICT market, we could safely say that more than anything else… Data is on the move!
In a surprisingly short time, 4G was able to boast of super growth that has already brought 4G++ to the public and –accordingly- has violently pushed forward the whole mobile industry. It is more than clear, that “data consumption” is nowadays the moving force as well as the only parameter showing a rapid increase in size. And, while consumption by itself is something we can measure, the impact to users’ lives we simply can’t. The fundamental changes in mobile industry have changed our lives in many levels.
Internet access is already «location agnostic», as there is no longer any distinction between fixed and mobile access. Speed and stability of the networks are non-negotiable and connectivity is being regarded as one of the basic commodities in our daily life. For the new generation, Wi-Fi and connectivity are possibly both included at the base of the Maslow pyramid!
Data gathering changes the way the market moves on and this trend will surely get boosted because of IoT. High speeds and low latency allow and facilitate rapid execution, almost in real time, while processing power transferred in the cloud allows access to most demanding applications, like those related to Virtual Reality. If 4G has changed the mobile market, 5G will change the world.
The mobile phone is not a tool, anymore. It’s an extension of our life! Yet, how will be the future devices? On what platform will they operate? In what way will they collaborate? What will be the role of providers? What are the services in-waiting? What are the opportunities and challenges offered by the market? All these questions -and many more of the same kind- will get their answer during the 6th Mobile World Conference, to be held at Divani Caravel Hotel on April 21, 2016.
The 4G to 5G way: narrow path or avenue?
For mobile providers, the biggest bet is the constant need for continuous upgrading of their infrastructure, so they will be able to satisfy an always increasing demand. Yet, their revenues don’t follow the same trend, forcing them to be always on alert, searching for better cost/return ratio on their investments.
For that reason, infrastructure manufacturers keep on trying to develop new technologies and methods which will make data transfer much faster and less costly. This is not an easy task, as the lifecycle of each technology innovation is getting more and more narrow, stretching the limits to the utmost.
In spite of the fact, that 4G is still far away from the end of its life, discussions about 5G have already got particular dynamics, although there are serious objections stemming from the fact that this competition merely intensifies the race in such an early stage, when even official specifications have not been set, yet!
What are the limits of 4G? What is its evolution path and how we will inch towards the «GBit society»? The road to 5G has really opened or this is just wishful thinking? Who needs it after all? Manufacturers? Networks? Consumers? How much ready are the markets for the investments needed? What is the level of maturity for this technology? Is Europe ready and willing to claim technology supremacy regarding the new generation of mobiles or the train is lost forever?
In this session, we will try to answer all these questions, in our effort to outline the road to 5G.
Applications & Services: Maturity or renaissance ?
Is it possible for a smartphone or a tablet to fully substitute the PC? Most probably, this is the biggest question that manufacturers and developers have to answer. Is OS the key? Or, maybe, the User Interface? Is it the dimensions of the devices? Is it Security, or maybe, something still unknown – an Χ factor?
The main difference between a PC and a mobile is that the mobile is anywhere, anytime, offering access to all necessary information and data. It is not pure coincidence that mobile phones are full of sensors… At the end of the day, mobile is a PC, if its user exploits it this way, so this rather “rhetoric” question is destined to analysts and not to users.
The adoption of mobile devices as a tool for work is not something new… Of course, there are millions of apps that can serve that purpose. The fields of eCommerce, eHealth, logistics, eBanking, CRM, as well as the rapidly growing IoT field -a real revolution, as everybody admits- constantly create new applications and ask for our attention, craving to enter our daily life. At the same time, the stormy charge of Virtual Reality opens new horizons for the meaning of User Experience.
So, for all those who believe that that applications are not useful anymore and also that developers have exhausted their inventive spirit, presentations in this session may perhaps oblige them to think twice…
- Which are the new fields that are promising significant growth?
- Would Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality or IoT push the creation of a new generation of apps?
- Following the important growth of electronic transactions, wouldn’t be natural for the banks and payments companies to exploit this trend, offering a new generation of applications with a more user-friendly interface?
- Could smartphones leverage the wider spread of electronic money?
- How UI will be in the era of ΙοΤ and contactless transactions?
- Which is the market that offers the biggest opportunities and challenges?
- Are there any standards, platforms, support mechanism and infrastructure needed for the creation of an ecosystem and, if so, what is the time-plan for its evolution to a mature holistic proposal?
The future experience: Connectivity everywhere!
This year marks 25 years from the appearance of GSM and 10 from the appearance of the first smartphone in the market. We now have a whole new generation of consumers that grew up holding a mobile phone in their hands. And, while marketers are still searching for killer apps, they also have at the back of their minds, the big question «after smartphone, what?»
Yet, what are the true limits of smartphones? What is their future? When are we gonna see devices with a flexible touch screen? What will mark the post-smartphone era? What kind of devices shall we have, then? What kind of impetus 5G will bring to the market? Processing speed still counts or we are entering an era of dumb screens and just fast connectivity? If processing power is being transferred to the cloud, what does this possibly mean for operators? What is the evolution of current applications and what are the trends for the creation of brand new fields of uses? What will be the role of a mobile phone in a smart home? What is the future of wearables? What will be the shape of media in the future? In what way our mobiles will enrich and transform reality towards Virtual Reality and what are the new dimensions that AR may take? Will connected cars be the next mobile “users”?
The future looks captivating to say the least, although it is quite hard to estimate its real dimensions. Like Universe, mobile market tends to expand! Things change fast and it seems that mobile is the spearhead of digital technology; it tends to be a prophecy turned true, too soon! So, be there: meet the magic future in the most fascinating way!