Exploring Rich Communications Services in Asia at MWC Shanghai 2018

RCS, one of the mobile industry’s fundamental innovations of recent years, will be crucial in supporting the modernisation of commerce and services in Asia. With launches from China Mobile, KDDI, NTT DoCoMo and SoftBank Corp. Earlier this year, 55 operators across the globe have adopted the new communications platform. The upgrade of SMS to RCS will enable businesses to use their ever-increasing understanding of their customers’ needs and preferences to deliver highly personalised services, communications and offers in a market estimated to be worth $74 billion by 2021.

This new tool will thus be central to the upcoming Mobile World Congress Shanghai 2018, where the region’s border mobile industry will convene to examine commercial opportunities and strategic imperatives.  The RCS Seminar, ‘RCS Business Messaging: The Future of Brand Communications’, held on Thursday 28 June, will explore the technology’s current commercial opportunities in greater depth and feature experts from 3Cinteractive, China Mobile, KDDI, Mobilesquared, NTT DoCoMo, Samsung, Softbank and WIT Software. Speaking ahead of his appearance at the seminar, KDDI’s Manager for Service Planning and A2P Business Strategy, Hideyuki Koto, claimed that “RCS will play a key role, not only as MNO service but also as an engagement platform between brands/enterprises and consumers. During our presentation, we will describe what “+message” offers to Japanese subscribers.”

Mobile World Congress Shanghai will also host the next in the series of the highly successful RCS Business Messaging Innovators Labs, taking place on Wednesday 27 June. The Innovators Labs, which are open exclusively to GSMA Members, act as an unofficial forum for the wider industry’s strategic direction and will contain representatives from a broad array of ecosystem players including 3Cinteractive, Juphoon, Mavenir, MessageBird, Mobilesquared, Samsung and  WIT Software. Together, these companies will share their experience of designing commercial models and customer trials, the most useful of which will inform the GSMA’s standards, which exist to ensure RCS becomes the industry-leading business messaging platform. Ahead of his presentation at the Lab, Luis Silva, CEO and Founder of WIT Software, claims that “RCS turns your smartphone into the ultimate digital billboard and can change customer-brand relationships forever.” This developing relationship between customers and brands will be further explored in the Lab by Jeff Michaud, VP Client Strategy at 3Cinteractive, who claims that “RCS Business Messaging will fundamentally change the way brands engage with consumers on their mobile device,” and who will be showcasing a variety of live campaigns from 3Cinteractive’s brand partners. Nick Lane, Chief Insight Analyst from Mobilesquared takes a commercial perspective and will be exploring how RCS can drive mobile operator and brand revenues, stating that “RCS will take brand/consumer engagement to new heights, prompting brands to migrate their app spend onto RCS.”

The RCS Operator Roundtable, also taking place on Thursday 28 June, will bring together operators who have launched, or are about to launch RCS, and those with an interest in providing this technology to their customers. In this operator-focused event, participants have the opportunity to share lessons learned with their peers and explore the central role that operators can play in the future of business messaging. The first hour of the event will be for MNOs only but vendors are invited to join for the second half and will be offered the chance to present their RCS offerings and respond to questions from the operators in the room.

Throughout Mobile World Congress, those looking to experience live, interactive demonstrations of the new technology can do so at the event’s GSMA Innovation City, the mock-urban environment exhibiting the industry’s most advanced solutions. This year, Samsung will showcase their RCS platform and will bring a number of RCS use cases from across Asia to reveal how major brands are using this exciting touch point to enhance their customer experience and fuel customer engagement. Visitors to the City will experience live RCS Business Messaging campaigns in action from brands including 1-800-Flowers, FRVR, Migu, Snap Travel, Syte Inspire and Walgreens. A window into the many ways in which this emerging technology can be used, these demonstrations will illustrate how RCS will form the basis for ‘contexual commerce’, the ideal where commercial preferences and purchase opportunities are integrated into everyday environments –  we hope to see you there.

Find out more and register for Future Networks RCS events at Mobile World Congress Shanghai 2018: