5G, Messaging, and Beta Labs – Future Networks at MWC19 Barcelona

MWC19 Barcelona, the world’s premier event in the telecoms calendar, kicks off next week – and the future of mobile network services will, naturally, take centre stage. The GSMA’s Future Networks programme has a packed agenda this year, which we invite you to consider ahead of the event itself.

RCS Business Messaging is transforming the way brands communicate with consumers, and the way those customers interact with them.  Where previously a separate OTT app would be required for each company to surpass the limitations of SMS, mobile users can now browse, shop, pre-order and more through far more engaging multimedia features, via a native device interface which allows them to do so all in one place.  Key to bringing about the global rollout of RCS have been the GSMA’s RCS Business Messaging Labs, which bring together the leaders in messaging including operators, brands, technology companies, marketing companies and aggregators to share insights, discuss progress and help build this growing ecosystem.

The latest of these Labs will take place on the Sunday before Mobile World Congress begins in earnest: the RCS Business Messaging Awareness Lab #22, an all-day event (10:00-17:00 followed by networking drinks) sponsored by  network transformation experts Mavenir.  Expert speakers from Mavenir, 3C, Accuweather, AT&T, Cequens, CM,com, Deutsche Telekom, Google, GSMA, Infobip, LivePerson, Kirusa, MobileSquared, NumberAI, Praekelt, SummitTech, Twitter, Vodafone, Virgin Trains will take the stage.

With a market forecast expected to grow to $74 billion by 2020, discussion turns to monetisation: how can RCS and the Conversational Commerce it makes possible be most effectively marketed, what role can AI play in adding value for consumers, and where is the market heading next?

Interested parties can join the audience on the following Monday, to review the extraordinary results of live RCS campaigns, and hear key players from Accuweather, Broxel, Deutsche Telekom, GSMA, Tenor and Virgin Trains, lead a discussion on digital transformation and the role RCS will play in this to enhance consumers lives.  Sponsored by Interop Technologies, the RCS Business Messaging Seminar: Intelligently Transforming Consumer Experiences will feature a particularly intriguing opening keynote on the role GIFs are playing in the changing norms of telecommunication, and how that is helping RCS provide even more seamless means for consumers to indicate preferences and moods to the brands they interact with.  Attendance is free, but delegates are required to register: if you’d like to attend, please submit your details here.

5G, of course, will feature strongly at this year’s MWC, as the much-anticipated technology continues to be deployed in key markets, and attracts considerable investment. Among the most exciting use cases on offer to consumers are those made possible by the combination of 5G and the Cloud, which allows for incredibly immersive experiences through extended reality (XR).  XR – the spectrum of technologies combining augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR), simulated reality (SR) and virtual reality (VR) –  is a natural use for 5G.   Without the ultra-high speeds, ultra-low latency and enormous coverage of 5G networks – and the massive storage and computing capabilities of edge computing and the Cloud – these demanding technologies would simply not be viable at consumer scale.

The 5G Cloud XR Summit on Wednesday 27 February, sponsored by Huawei, will bring together leading operators such as China Mobile and Deutsche Telekom to chart the course on Cloud XR with experts from Microsoft, Intel and Verizon; speakers will identify the key use cases in Cloud XR, investigate the value chain, stakeholders, and business models, and share case studies and best practices. Register here to secure your place!

5G will, like any revolutionary new technology, need to be made economical to achieve sustainable scale. Business models must always be designed to effectively balance affordability to consumers and recognition of the considerable investments made. Our second Beta Lab: Innovation and Cost Reduction in the 5G Era will showcase some of the most ingenious and efficient innovators in this developing ecosystem. Along with global operators and vendors, these innovators will share their validated cost intensity savings which are poised to provide unprecedented benefits to consumers while also delivering ROI to operators and their partners. If you want to hear from some of the most exciting voices in Energy, Backhaul, Infrastructure and Automation, register now here, for the event on Monday 25 February.

That’ll be followed on the Tuesday by the LTE Evolution Roundtable, which will focus on how 5G and LTE, one of the technologies making up Mobile IoT, will coexist and complement one another in the coming years.  If you’d like to join the discussion, which will explore the balance between LTE evolution and 5G investment, please register your interest here.  The roundtable is free to attend, but attendance is by invitation only.  Also on the Tuesday will be our roundtable on Mobile Broadcast in the 5G Era, which will give concerted thought to LTE’s mass market adoption in the age of 5G – how cooperation and coordination across the entire ecosystem of operators, vendors and manufacturers can be optimised to the benefit of all. Applications to attend should be directed here.

From 08:30-19:00 every day, Future Networks will be showcasing the latest innovations in 5G, Cloud XR and RCS Business Messaging in GSMA’s  Innovation City, Hall 4.  Google, the GSMA and global operators will demonstrate how they are working together to bring better carrier messaging for everyone, and over 20 global brands will showcase their consumer campaigns.

5G will also take centre stage in Innovation City, showing how intelligent connectivity is the key to a number of exciting consumer and commercial opportunities. See how some of the fastest cars in the world are being used to test high-speed 5G in the UK’s first live 5G testbed with AutoAir and McLaren Technologies. Interact with a connected robot at the China Unicom booth and of course, experience how extended realities are being transformed through 5G cloud computing with Huawei, Deutsche Telekom and Skyworth.

For a full view of everything you can expect from Future Networks at MWC19, take a look at our event guide, where you can find even more information about all of our unmissable seminars, roundtable and demos.