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UK Insights

Will.i.am and Mark Zuckerberg on day 1 of #MWC15

Claire Davies

Former editor and head of content

Mobile 02.03.2015 / 22:30

Will.i.am at Mobile World Congress

Kantar reaction to the big names at Mobile World Congress

The big names were out for day 1 of Mobile World Congress 2015 in Barcelona, with Will.i.am and Mark Zuckerberg appearing on separate panels.

Will.i.am might be best known to the British public at the moment as a judge on the Voice UK, but he was billed as 'Global Music Artist, Entrepreneur and Founder and Chairman, i.am+' at #MWC15. He was speaking as part of a panel discussing: 'The Future of Entertainment is Mobile.'

Amongst other things, Will.i.am was talking about his line of smart-watches and new ideas he has for wearable products, although he doesn't actually like the word 'wearable'. He talked about the importance of fashion, and the fact that the fashion industry doesn't use the word wearable.

One of the things that resonated with some of the Kantar folks in the audience was when Will.i.am talked about the importance of data. He said people are wary of giving away their personal data, but what they people don't see, and what happens all time, is the sharing of your likes and dislikes, the clothes you buy and the things you eat. And that this behaviour, or as he called it, your 'idataty' (a portmanteau of identity and data) is really powerful.

Will.i.am may have sold out stadiums, but at #MWC15 he couldn't compete with Mark Zuckerberg. Last year, the Facebook founder talked about how he wanted to work with mobile operators to connect the next billion people to the internet, for free, via Internet.org. Kantar's Mardien Drew was hoping for an update: "I was looking to hear how the partnership with the mobile operators is going and how many people have been connected. He did give us a bit of an update, in that he talked about piloting it in 6 emerging markets, but he didn't talk about how many people he had managed to connect and he didn't give detail on what next. And whenever he was questioned about how people should be paying for data in the future, he didn't really answer the question."

There was also a bit of discussion about the purchase of Whatsapp, which was announced at Mobile World Congress in 2014. Teleanor, the Swedish mobile phone operator, did touch on the fact that messaging services like Whatsapp, have taken revenue from operators who used to make money from messaging. But Mardien says really the panel discussion with Mark Zuckerberg just left you with a feeling of 'watch this space.'

Source : Kantar

Editor's Notes

Kantar are exhibiting at #MWC15, come see us at Hall 8.1 D51. Contact us for data, insights or an interview.

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