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UK Insights

Previewing Mobile World Congress 2015

Claire Davies

Former editor and head of content

Mobile 16.02.2015 / 10:30

Mobile World Congress logo

Kantar experts look ahead to Mobile World Congress 2015

Once again, Kantar will be exhibiting at the GSMA Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. More than 85,000 people are expected to descend on the Spanish city between the 2nd and 5th March 2015. We'll be in our usual spot: Hall 8.1 Stand D51.

So what will be the hot topics at #MWC15? And who will be the must-see speakers? We've asked mobile experts from around our company for their thoughts.

Mardien Drew, head of the digital incubation team at Kantar, is looking forward to attending 4 Years from Now: "It's a new programme presented by Mobile World Capital Barcelona, which brings together entrepreneurs and investors to share ideas on a variety of topics related to start-ups and innovation. Eric Salama Kantar's CEO will be speaking! I'm also looking forward to seeing Sarah Mansfield, from our client Unilever speak about a need for a different approach to giving users transparency, choice and control over their data and privacy now that mobile devices and apps are expanding users' digital footprint on a massive scale. I also have Chris Moody on my list of must see speakers. Chris is VP Data Strategy at Twitter and will be discussing how operators and brands can benefit from leveraging big data, predictive analytics and location technology to personalise customer experience. As we work more and more with images collected through our panellists, I am also particularly interested in learning more about how innovations in imaging technologies be integrated into future offerings. Given the different functions photos can serve, how are concerns over privacy and ownership being addressed by different service providers?"

Carolina Milanesi, Chief of Research at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech is interested to see what Microsoft have been up to: "From a hardware vendor perspective we will have news from the usual suspects from HTC to LG to Samsung. While most of the smartphones and wearables we will see are mostly going to be improved iterations of previous models, I am curious to see what could be the first high-end Microsoft product since the acquisition of Nokia. With the arrival of Windows 10 to smartphones, it seems the right time for Microsoft to revamp the high-end portfolio that has been put to the side over the past year to push sales in the mid-tier."

And Carolina expects wearables will still be a hot topic: "Judging from what we have seen at CES wearables and the connected home will still feel like a work in progress, especially in the area of value proposition for the consumer. Connected cars and drones will also be present at the show. Ironically, the bigger ecosystem that was created thanks to the smartphones will likely steal the attention rather than most smartphones themselves, as both users and industry watchers have come to take those somewhat for granted."

Kantar's Ben Tuff is our global account director for Samsung, and he also thinks the connected home will feature heavily: "I expect there to be lots of discussion around what the home of the future will look like and how the phone will become the connector of the home. There will be ongoing reference to "where is my hover board?" (yawn!) leading into discussions about eco systems and the realisation that any advantage will come from those, not the hardware."

Simon Falconer, Global Product Development Director - Mobile, at Kantar's TNS says the audience at MWC has been changing over the past few years: "I expect to see the extended presence of consumer packaged goods (CPG/FMCG) marketers and agencies at MWC, as mobile media and marketing further matures. For 2015, there is the dedicated Mobile Media Summit that will 'focus on mobile media and advertising global best practices from the top global brands and agencies.'  I'm excited to hear Chris Copeland, Global CEO GroupM, and other speakers from Mindshare, MEC, MediaCom Worldwide and OgilvyRED. Separately, Twitter have scheduled several educational sessions targeting developers and marketers."

Simon thinks the big trends this year will include:

Location-based marketing:  whilst not new from a technology perspective, consumer usage has remained very low; however, recent developments, such as the Facebook Tips product announcement, could significantly extend the volume of consumers marketers can reach through location based mobile marketing. This means marketers' interest will grow as they seek to reach the right people, at the right/place occasion with the contextual right message, content, service or promotion.

Reaching the non-smartphone user: Whilst internet connected smartphone continue their giddy rise to prominence, key target consumer groups, especially in emerging markets, are still in a 'dumb' or feature phone world. Others have smarter phones, but not the income to take full advantage of internet connectivity. Expect interest in technologies and approaches to reach and engage this group, be it through involvement in initiatives like (promoted by Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg at MWC 2014), or more modest but still impactful ideas, such as Unilever creating the mobile media channel in India.

Mobile-based data for consumer understanding: as mobile continues to grow as the centre-piece for other connected technologies, from wearables to cars, marketers are increasingly interested in working with these new data streams to better understand current consumer behaviours, and predict emerging trends ahead of their competitors.

Source : Kantar, Kantar Worldpanel, Kantar TNS

Editor's Notes

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