Mobile World Congress 2017: Highlights of Trends And Forecasts

Mobile World Congress (MWC) the largest global gathering of the mobile industry concluded last week. Summary of the trends and declarations that grabbed the audience attention at the global platform, and will practically affect the technological circle in future, are given below.

Improvement in the Virtual Reality (VR) market

Though the VR market has is relatively new, tech companies have are coming up with strategies and new products that revolve around it. The market has been gradually expanding as we had observed with the coverage of the collection of best VR headsets of 2016. The trend has been well exhibited by VR-related updates this year, at the Mobile World Congress.

Image Source: BI Intelligence

  • To contribute in the VR development, Qualcomm has introduced its new gadgets. It has announced a head-mounted display (HMD) developer program and a new VR kit. The HMD program is now available, whereas the kit is expected to be released in the second quarter of 2017.
  • Oculus dropped its hardware prices to stay in equilibrium with consumer price points. On Wednesday, the company declared to decrease the Rift headset and touch controller by $100. This makes the total amount dropped to $598.
  • Samsung announced a companion controller for its Gear VR to make it more user-friendly. The new controller consists of two new touch points, one of which is a touchpad and the other a trigger.
  • Samsung is also testing its latest solo VR headset prototype through handpicked users. This VR headset does not require any smartphone or PC to power up the gadget. The solo VR headset requires high processing power to provide a true 3D VR experience which is tricky to create. For this purpose, Samsung is using its state of the art Exynos chip to boost up its headset. It has also recommended other VR manufacturing companies to use its Exynos 9 chip to create headsets.

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High anticipation of next generation mobile networking

GSMA has announced embracing 5G. The adoption is projected to reach 1.1 billion 5G connections by 2025, five years after the next-generation mobile networking will probably step into the market. If that happens, it will mean that one in every eight mobiles in 2025 will have 5G connections running, globally. The lack of following equal standards by mobile network providers, device producers and tech manufacturers has become the biggest obstacle in achieving such target, according to Bloomberg.

The influence of Artificial Intelligence on both consumers and businesses

Throughout the Mobile World Congress week, various companies announced AI services in a variety of consumer devices and software. LINE, messaging app announced its Clova, an AI digital assistant. Clova can be accessed through an app and an attached speaker named Wave. LINE has also declared its partnership with Sony to produce strong AI digital assistant smartphones. In business perspective, Samsung SDS introduced Nexshop Training where AI Chabot will train retail personnel, as per ZDNet. Introducing its new AI standard, Amdocs is launching its new AI services to telcos with the name of aia.

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Due to the growth in aversion to advertising and increase in ad-blocking trend, producers and brands are switching to interactive video, known as 360-degree video. It is an augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) based video which will help them regain their lost market share.

Interactive video provides life-like and emotional experience that is required to grab the audience attention.

The 360-degree ad of Hong Kong Airline had an impact 35 times more than its 2D ad. In the meantime, Lionsgate’s Blair Witch VR campaign witnessed 57% voluntary feedback rate. A great future lies ahead for these interactive videos. According to YuMe, 63% of US audience claims the experience to be the ‘next big thing’.

Senior research analyst for BI Intelligence, Dylan Mortensen has presented a detailed report on interactive video. The detail includes the benefit of each video format and highlights the process through which producers can utilize each format.

Key points from the report

  • Facebook and Google are still the dominating giants in the digital ad world. According to IAB, the digital industry witnessed 2% decrease in ad revenue in H1 2016, excluding Google and Facebook.
  • Marketers have not been able to strongly influence the consumer shift to mobile. In 2016, US consumers gave one-third of their media time to mobile phones, while only 17% spent watching ads.
  • Now advertisers can grab a huge audience through 360-degree video. It also allows users to view ads according to their will. The format has the ability to create longer viewing periods.
  • Both physical and digital worlds are highly influenced by augmented reality (AR). According to Global Market Insight, 81% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is expected of the AR market from 2016-2024.
  • Though it’s highly complex, VR also comes with great rewards. VR content inflicted more emotional engagement and longer viewing time than traditional 2D, as per YuMe and Nielsen. According to BI Intelligence, the global VR headset sales will grow 359% over the period of six years. It will generate over 55 million from 12 million in the period of 2017-2022.

Which particular technology at Mobile World Congress amazed you?

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