Having spent four days at the world's biggest mobile event,
Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, our mobile experts have noticed
some key trends: diversification, personalisation and the
importance of connections.
Guy Rolfe, Kantar's head of global mobile practice, says: "The
mobile sector is now more competitive and aggressive than ever
before. The carriers and the content providers are all fighting for
vital revenue, for example: WhatsApp announcing it is going into
voice. We are seeing the diversification of many business models as
everyone fights to grow new revenues, such as: mobile ad servers
seeking to extend their value proposition."
Mardien Drew, head of the digital incubation team at Kantar, has
been coming to Mobile World Congress for the past 3 years: "A few
years ago the mobile operators all talked about getting handsets
into the hands of consumers, now they talk about connecting the
next 3 billion people. This desire to connect people is how Mark
Zuckerberg described the purchase of WhatsApp in his Mobile World
Congress keynote. Nothing has wowed me this year, as it did a few
years ago. It feels like we're just experiencing the logical next
step. For example, 3 years ago we had the connected house, 2 years
ago we had the connected street and this year, the connected city.
None of it is particularly new to MWC, but the 'hype-cycle' is slow
and it takes a long time for these things to come to market."
Looking ahead to #MWC15, Guy Rolfe expects the trends from this
year to intensify: "I expect the aggressive competition between
carriers and content providers will continue to heat up and as this
battle unfolds we'll start to see market sector consolidation. From
a consumer point of view, I'd like to see real innovation that
delivers consumer benefits, for example improved battery life.
There is speculation Google and Apple are both working on a new
generation of battery but there is no indication yet just how close
they are to making this a reality."
Mardien says a theme that she expects to continue to grow in
importance at Mobile World Congress next year is personalisation:
"This year we've seen personalised headphones, covers, cat mascots
(!) as well as a huge variety of apps that are tailored to a
particular individual providing personal benefits. I don't
necessarily think we'll see big announcements next year, instead
we'll see products and services continuing to take their logical
next steps and additional layers of personalisation."
Source : Kantar