Much of the mainstream coverage of MWC19 focused on the products, innovations and devices that will be more familiar to the average consumer. You could be forgiven for thinking that the highlight was the announcement and demonstrations of folding smartphones, namely the Samsung Galaxy Fold and Huawei’s Mate X.
Whilst these made the news headlines, the real stories from this year’s exhibition concerned Virtual Reality (VR), the Internet of Things (IoT) and the further roll out of 5G networks.
Appropriately, the interdependence of IoT, 5G and Artificial Intelligence (AI)/ Machine Learning (ML) was much discussed, with 5G, AI, and IoT being described as a “new trinity”.
In order to counter the claim that 5G is too expensive for the general user, the utilisation of 5G by businesses, commercial enterprises, banking, telecoms and network managers was much promoted.
Similarly for the uptake of IoT to gain widespread traction, 5G networks will, it was argued, be essential. As the IoT spreads from early adopters into the mainstream, existing 4G networks will be insufficient to cope with the demands in terms of both data and speed of transfer.
The other contenders for 5G optimised uses are VR and Cloud Gaming. Both are seen as potentially key drivers in attempts to persuade mass uptake of 5G for the general mobile user/consumer. In order for multiplayer games to be played with the same degree of speed and connectivity as broadband allows, 5G is being touted as essential.
By deploying 5G connectivity with VR and Extended Reality (XR) viewers /headsets users of 5G mobile devices would no longer need to be tethered to their devices in order to play games. It is this aspect of 5G that may well drive a demand for the 5G handsets debuted and demonstrated.
How much of, or when, this seamlessly connected future will actually come to pass is open to debate; however the main takeaway from MWC19 by our attendee, Rosana@MLReporter.com , is that 5G is set to dominate the tech landscape for the foreseeable future.
Rosana@MLReporter.com at MWC19