We returned from Barcelona, where we attended our first Mobile World Congress. It was such an amazing experience that it makes the perfect topic for the first post on the blog 🙂
For the ones that are not familiar with the event, the Mobile World Congress is the world’s largest exhibition for the mobile industry. You will find device manufacturers, technology providers, vendors, content owners, and mobile startups from all over the world. The 4 days exhibition usually takes place in February, but this year it occurred during the first week of March.
Within this post I’ll list my personal 4 best reasons to attend the event, as an App Factory.
This edition has counted over 93,000 attendees.
Well before the start of the event, as soon as your company profile is published on the list of exhibitors, you will start receiving dozens of emails everyday from companies that are interested in your work and want to meet you personally. We set up several meetings before arriving in Barcelona, and many others once on site.
Special Tip: Don’t be shy, engage with people that pass close by your stand.
2. Learn about new technologies
MWC is a great place to learn about new available technologies. For example, did you know that the owners of the app DMD Panorama have made available an SDK to integrate their technology into your own apps? With a few lines of code, you will be able to add the 360° photo feature into your own mobile app! Or you might be more interest in MOCA that simplifies the development of proximity marketing features that work with iBeacons. The list goes on and on…
Special Tip: Grab a list of exhibitors, read the short companies descriptions and set a meeting with the people that provide new services that might be useful to you.
Networking at mwc is easy and fun. During the day, thousands of business cards are exchanged every hour. And after 7pm, when the fair closes its doors, the networking continues at the private parties downtown. On our first night we attended the Mobile Marketing Party, organised by several companies operating in the mobile marketing industry. It started at 8pm and ended at 12am, 4 full hours of eating delicious food, drinking good cocktails and meeting interesting people.
Special Tip: Don’t miss the night parties. After a few beers people lower their barriers, they get more emotional and sincere, and you have a chance at getting to know them better, and eventually establish stronger relationships.
4. Know the founders of your favorite startups
Ever wandered to personally meet a founder of a successful startup based across the ocean? At MWC, the are hundreds of startups coming from all around the globe. Many of them are represented by their founders, or at least by their top executives. It is a fantastic opportunity to grab a coffe with people you followed online.
Special Tip: Don’t miss the “Four years from now” (4YFN). A special event organised within the MWC. 4YFN is all about startups, the best place for digital entrepreneurs and investors.
You can say that MWC is like Disneyland for a digital entrepreneur operating in the mobile industry. There is just one downside: the exhibitor pass isn’t cheap. Prices go from $700 up to $5,000 per person, which could be not affordable for a small company. But good news is that several countries offer sponsorships for the most promising startups.