11 April 2017
7 min read
In the wake of one of the most disruptive MWCs to date, we’ve extracted some of the event’s best learnings, biggest trends and brand new innovations that are helping to mobilise the workforce and power the hyper-connected office. From connected cars quantified self wearables, it was intelligent technology that stole the show at the world’s biggest mobility event.
With the latest technology, insights and innovation trends from the event, you can ensure you’re keeping putting IT at the forefront of business progress and keeping your users connected.
Mobility: it's more than a mobile dvice
Being a mobile worker began with the mobile phone, enabling us to simply talk or text on the move. But today, mobility is much more than a sales call from the car or an office check in, while you check in the airport. Today, it’s about shrinking the distance between online and offline working, increasing productivity and driving business growth without disruption from anywhere you are in the world.
Top trends spotted at MWC 2017
5G connectivity: it’s almost here
The long-awaited network technology that promises considerably faster data communication speeds is being driven by the explosive demand for video. It’s been in the pipeline for some time, is due to arrive in 2019 and was one of the biggest topics at MWC 2017. Video is driving the need for increased data and speed capability. First mobile networks aimed for coverage, then bandwith, now they are driven to enable video for entertainment and industrial apps
There was also talk of a lite version being released later this year. To compare speeds, consider this; downloading an HD movie on 4G takes 31 seconds. Downloading an HD move on 5G takes 1 second. With an acceleration of this size, it’s no wonder O2 has predicted that 5G will contribute £7bn to the UK economy by 2026.11
What’s in it for you? While your business could be transformed by the connection speeds offered, many congress delegates felt the hype didn’t live up to the reality that there is still no agreement on what actually constitutes 5G. And as it’s only set to be available in 2019, it’s more a consideration for a future mobility strategy.
The Internet of Things: connecting our roads and cities
IoT continues to disrupt the way we interact with everyday products and connected cars stole the show at MWC this year. Companies like Intel showcased how they’re powering the next generation of intelligent connected cars designed as communication hubs that can automate driving, minimise collisions and implement 5G technology. And from inside to outside the car, expect to see your city more connected in the near future with the roll out of smart traffic lights that speak to your vehicle and tell you when the light will change, making our journeys much smoother. Companies expected to spend almost $5 trillion2 on IoT within the next five years, so expect the way we operate to be revolutionised
What’s in it for you? IoT technology that helps to streamline operations, enhance productivity and enable remote working is available now and in more convenient places than ever before, like connected cars showcased at MWC 2017.
AI, VR, robotics and drones: making major progress
Artificial Intelligence shows rapid and major advances at every MWC and this year was nothing short of spectacular. TeleSoftas, a Lithuanian mobile app development company, demonstrated how they’re designing business meetings of the future through virtual reality - with avatars to represent different employees around the world. Softbank, from Japan, unveiled new customer service robots created to greet and give product demonstrations in store to free up their human counterparts. A special area at the event was roped off to show the capabilities of drones, earmarked to make man-powered delivery vehicles redundant in the near future. While many are still skeptical of the home adoption rates of AR and VR (the headsets’ high price tags could be a barrier), findings in the 2016 Tech Pro Research report state that 67% of businesses are considering using AR in the future, while 47% are considering VR for the future.3
What’s in it for you? If you think AI, VR, Robotics or Drones could have a positive effect on your business, you might have to wait a while longer until the technology is readily available and more budget-friendly. Stay up to speed by following companies like TeleSoftas online to stay informed about their release date.
Virtual Assistants: better than ever
Apple’s Siri has faced increasing competition in the last year from devices like Amazon Echo and if MWC 2017 is anything to go by (and it is) this will continue to rise over the next 12 months.
What’s in it for you? Intelligent virtual assistants that are voice activated and hands-free will become an essential part of your mobile business toolkit, helping employees to communicate quicker and collaborate more easily.
Digital Twins: no more broken devices
Devices in the future will have a ‘digital representation’ of themselves that allow IT teams to examine the objects in real time and use analytics to enable predictive maintenance.4 If IT team can predict an issue and stop it before it happens, this could mean your mobile device may never break down again.
What’s in it for you? No breakdowns means no downtime, helping workers stay connected and keep productive.
Managed IT services: aaS is the future
The future is offline, if MWC 2017 is anything to go by. While being cloud-based is nothing new, the scale of adoption of SaaS, NaaS and DaaS is unprecedented. IT and other operation apps will all be replaced by cloud-based services.
What’s in it for you? Managed services lower your costs and offer agile on-demand availability without compromising the IT security of your business. In other words, it’s a no-brainer.
Holographic Meetings: remote face to face meetings
Microsoft HoloLens enables you to interact with the physical world around you with a headset and holographic content. As the technology moves forward, the need for face to face meetings could take a back seat as holographic meetings become increasingly possible.
What’s in it for you? One of the biggest drawbacks of remote working is not getting valuable face to face time to connect with co-workers or clients. Holographic technology could remove this obstacle by giving you face to face time from anywhere in the world.
Hybrid devices: travel light
Hybrid devices help professionals to streamline, stay connected, keep secure and collaborate from any location, with no need for downtime. In the office of the future, hybrid devices will have made carrying multiple devices a thing of the past.
What’s in it for you? Powerful, portable hybrid technology is available now and should form an essential part of any mobile business strategy. If you’re looking to boost your workplace productivity, enhance your employees’ experience and keep your business secure - explore the HP Pro x2 612 G1 today.
Robust batteries: Longer lives and faster charging
With more people working on the move than ever before, it was only a matter of time before battery life was enhanced. Professionals expect to be always on and if their battery life can’t keep up they could look elsewhere. A key common feature on new devices unveiled at MWC 2017 were longer-lasting, faster-charging batteries.
What’s in it for you? It goes without saying that longer battery life helps your employees stay connected and productive for longer. In your business mobility strategy, ensure you take the battery life of your device fleet into consideration as it could have a significant impact on your operations.
Customer service: enhancing their experience
Mobility isn’t just about enhancing productivity for employees. It also helps improve the customer service experience. One of the most exciting releases at the MWC 2017 came from HP, who unveiled new commercial accessories for the HP Elite x3 Windows 10, with a mobile scanning solution and mobile retail solution.
What’s in it for you? Or more importantly, what’s in it for your customers? The solutions can seamlessly scan barcodes, check prices, view inventory and dock into a full PC experience later on, helping to create a quicker, flawless customer journey with no delays or data errors.
The BYOD and enterprise mobility market size is estimated to grow from $35.10 billion in 2016 to $73.30 billion by 2021.5 Long gone are the days where we were restricted by being in the office to reach our files, collaborate with coworkers or make a client call. Mobile technology innovations have accelerated the mobility revolution for some time and shows no signs of slowing down. As the trends and innovations at MWC 2017 made clear, businesses must get on board, keep pace and embrace changes if they want to stay afloat in the future.