IoT to Take Centre Stage at Mobile World Congress in Pivotal Year for the Industry

February 5, 2018

Andrew Parker, IoT Marketing Director, GSMA

rc-bioThe Internet of Things (IoT) is increasingly being delivered through mobile networks, via licensed low power, wide area (LPWA) connections.  GSMA Intelligence projects that, by 2025, there will around 3 billion LPWA connections, of which more than half will be in licensed spectrum: the LTE-M and NB-IoT technologies to which we refer collectively as Mobile IoT.  As we embark on that remarkably promising future, this year’s Mobile World Congress is naturally a particularly significant one for all things IoT.

A highlight of the sessions immediately preceding this year’s Mobile World Congress will be the 6th Mobile IoT Summit: Scaling Global Deployment, bringing together leading voices from across the ecosystem to consider the task ahead.  Opening keynote presentations from Huaweiand Sequans Communications will establish the context from which the session will proceed. Senior representatives from Vodafone, Telefonica, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom and China Mobile will then comprise our first panel, on how they plan to drive forward growth and encourage global adoption, and on key findings from launches so far.  All of the operators are looking to cover more countries with Mobile IoT networks in the coming year, offering customers the global outreach of their services. We will then be presented with some deployment case studies, before concluding with our second panel on the technological outlook for Mobile IoT.  IoT experts from Nokia, Sierra Wireless, Ericsson and EMEA will contemplate how best Mobile IoT can meet its potential to drive down costs and power consumption while also ensuring wide coverage, and what consequences that will yield in turn for the rest of the industry.  The Summit will take place on Sunday, February 25 between 13:00 and 18:30 at the Hotel NH Collection Barcelona Tower and is free to attend, but do please register here.

The Internet of Things is the revenue drive for MNOs

Among the greatest changes brought about by the IoT will be to how operators, and indeed others across the ecosystem, .  As operators increasingly look beyond traditional revenue streams, capitalising on the sheer volume of data produced by the IoT will form a core element of many business models.  Properly analysed, anonymised big data will allow operators to offer a vast range of high-value, data-driven services.  We are therefore delighted to host a flagship seminar at the Mobile World Congress on Generating Value through IoT and Big Data, which will convene leading operators and their analytics partners, with a focus on improving outcomes in agriculture, industry and the environment.  Case study demonstrations will include data-driven air quality solutions by Telefonica and Far EasTone, agricultural services by Korea Telecom, and a range of urban and industrial innovations by M1 and Turkcell.  Audience members will have an opportunity to ask questions of each case study in turn, making for a highly interactive and revealing session. The session will run between 09:00 and 11:00 on Tuesday 27 February, and those registering will have priority entry.

The Tools to Create New Solutions on Mobile IoT Networks

This emphasis on practical engagement with innovative IoT solutions is maintained throughout Mobile World Congress this year, illustrating how decisively the IoT has stepped out of the realms of theory and preparation, and into that of demonstrable reality.  On Wednesday 28 February we will hold our Mobile IoT Innovators Developer Workshop, in partnership with Telefonica, which will allow device makers, product developers and solution providers to gain valuable insight into the work of technical experts at the forefront of Mobile IoT.  The event runs from 15:00 to 17:00, giving ample time to cover issues, in depth, such as using multi-technology chipsets and modules, standardisation and connectivity challenges and security and business requirements.  There will be opportunities for hands-on experience, by which participants will be able to learn about the practical implications and opportunities of building Mobile IoT products and solutions. There will also be time dedicated to ongoing collaboration efforts convened at the GSMA’s Open Labs, and Telefonica’s The Thinx.  Throughout the Congress those with an interest in practical technological solutions will be able to drop in to see the Internet of Things at Innovation City 2018, which will host demonstrations as various as Telefonica’s smart SIM-based utility metering to Mobile World Capital’s smart stadium in Barcelona.

Cybersecurity Is Important to any Connections, IoT Is No Exception

One of the most sensitive issues in the industry is, naturally, security.  As the world moves online at an exponential rate, so does the potential for cybersecurity breaches, leaked data, destroyed reputations and costly remediation.  Improving security must be at the forefronts of our minds, and efforts, or the IoT will never reach its incredible potential; growth is almost wholly reliant on consumer confidence.  The first session of our seminar on IoT Security, Drones – Creating a Connected and Secure Future, on February 28 between 12:00 and 14:00, will therefore be dedicated to discussing best practice in security, considering assessment frameworks, and recent regulatory developments in the US and the EU.  We will also continue our practical focus with a live hack demonstration, so attendees can witness how easily devices can be compromised where they are not properly secured.  We will then move on to consider in depth the role drones are set to play in scaling the IoT – the commercial opportunities, connectivity challenges, and security considerations involved in helping bring these highly versatile solutions to the mass market.  With senior security experts from NIST, Verizon, Infinion, Telefonica, ENISA, ElevenPaths and Globe UAV, this is an unmissable session for those with a professional interest in securing the IoT.

We are confident our plans for IoT at this year’s Mobile World Congress will prove a highly productive array of discussions, on the some of the most important priorities the industry faces.  We are all however subject to time constraints, and no conference can cover every angle, or address every possibility.  We therefore hope as many of you as possible will be able to join us on the evening of February 28, between 17:00 and 18:30, for the Mobile IoT Innovators Networking Reception, where collaboration may be brought about in a less structured manner.  Join peers from across the ecosystem to discuss latest market developments, use cases, and network deployments in Mobile IoT, in what will be a rare opportunity to do so with players from around the world.  We look forward to driving forward development of the IoT ecosystem in every way we can, and these more organic discussions play an important role in building the relationships we all rely on to do so.

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