Mobile World Congress
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Mobile World Congress
News around Mobile World Congress 2011
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#mwc11: TripAdvisor Adds Virtual Tours Using Augmented Reality to iPad App

#mwc11: TripAdvisor Adds Virtual Tours Using Augmented Reality to iPad App | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
TripAdvisor®, the world's largest travel site*, now with more than 5 million unique users a month on mobile alone, today announced the launch of a new virtual tours feature for the TripAdvisor iPad app, built using augmented reality technology. The new functionality allows travelers to take a virtual walk through their travel destination with nearby places superimposed over Street View from Google, including TripAdvisor's more than 40 million traveler reviews and opinions, giving travelers an even more engaging and insightful way to discover great hotels, restaurants and attractions. The feature is available today in the TripAdvisor iPad app, available for free in the Apple App Store.
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MWC RoundUp: The Good, The Bad, The Exciting & The Boring. #mwc11

MWC RoundUp: The Good, The Bad, The Exciting & The Boring. #mwc11 | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Phones

LG Optimus 3D. One of the most talked about phones during MWC but I don’t really know what the whole buzz is about. I tried very hard to see the value of adding 3D into a phone…but I don’t. The ‘no glasses’ 3D makes it really annoying to watch movies and play games, worse than that, it actually made me feel dizzy. They told me my eyes were ‘weird like that’. Apparently, ‘some people’ have it. Uh huh.

Windows 7 phone! Love from the first touch! I honestly didn’t think I was ever going to like a Windows phone but Windows 7 changed my mind. I am in love with its simplicity, user-friendliness and the minimalist interface.

Tablets

I was hoping to find a tablet I want to buy but I haven’t. The tablets were boring, they all looked alike and there was not a huge amount of differentiation inside either so I decided to wait for the iPad 2.

Stands

Android just made my days! Especially their smoothie bar with free Gingerbread, Cupcake, Donut and Honeycomb smoothies (YUM!). They also had a slide, little Android clothing pins and you could androidify yourself and get stickers of your Adroid you! Oh yeah, and they also displayed some cool apps ;) I spent a lot of time at the Android stand, I think you understand why :)

Exciting stuff to follow in 2011:

Voice-over-LTE, NFC, mobile payments, mHealth.

Favorite quotes:

“Calling twitter microblogging is like calling a car a horseless carriage”, Dick Costolo, CEO, Twitter

“Good user experience is like music in movies. If it’s good, you won’t even notice it. But when it’s bad…”, Risto Lahdesmaki, Co-Founder, Idean
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#mwc11: RIM vows NFC payment capabilities on new BlackBerry phones

Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) co-CEO Jim Balsillie promises the majority of new BlackBerry devices shipping in the coming months will integrate Near Field Communications technologies, enabling support for mobile payment solutions and other location-specific services. "Many if not most of BlackBerry devices throughout the year will have NFC in them," Balsillie said during an appearance here at Mobile World Congress 2011. Balsillie first indicated RIM's interest in NFC last November during the Web 2.0 conference, saying "We'd be fools not to" when asked whether the device maker planned to roll out NFC support.

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mwc11: HTC, Android generating most buzz at Mobile World Congress

mwc11: HTC, Android generating most buzz at Mobile World Congress | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Wondering just which revelations at 2011's Mobile World Congress have gone down the best with attendees while you're stuck in the rain sodden UK?

According to the latest analytics by the firm – as detailed by UK publisher Connect2Media – HTC has stolen much of the limelight following the unveiling of a refreshed Android line-up, including its forthcoming stylus-enabled tablet Flyer.

Both LG and Samsung are also generating much chatter following their own press conferences, with Motorola – which announced its own Android tablet, Xoom, long before MWC 2011 – coming bottom of the pile.

When it comes to platforms, Android is generating what Webtrends believes to be more than 62 percent of the buzz.

However, perhaps owing to Nokia's strategic partnership with Microsoft, Windows Phone 7 is reportedly being talked about more than iOS in Barcelona, taking roughly 20 percent of the pie.
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#mwc11: Wi-Fi only tablets are rare - Brilliant iPad pricing

#mwc11: Wi-Fi only tablets are rare - Brilliant iPad pricing | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
When Apple launched the iPad last year many were surprised at the aggressive pricing. This pricing strategy has proven to be brilliant, and forced competitors to look to carrier subsidies to get pricing low enough to generate sales. This is why we don’t see too many Wi-Fi only tablets hitting store shelves even though most companies announce them at launch. The reality is they cannot sell them cheaply enough to both compete with the iPad and make a profit.

I am convinced this is why the Wi-Fi only model of the Samsung Galaxy Tab has yet to see the light of day. Samsung launched the 3G models first, to get carriers onboard with their subsidized pricing. The strategy worked for Samsung, with decent sales numbers as a result. But this created a bit of a dilemma for Samsung in regards to the Wi-Fi only model, as it can’t sell them cheaply enough to seriously compete with the iPad’s good pricing and still make a profit. This is why the Wi-Fi only model of the Galaxy Tab is nowhere to be found. The unit price would likely be way too high to compete with the iPad, and Samsung would be left with egg on its face.

This is why tablets being announced this week at the Mobile World Congress are too expensive to get consumer’s dollars. Take away the carrier subsidy and these things are hundreds of dollars too high to generate a sales volume necessary to make a product successful. Tablet makers are between a rock and hard place, and they have been put there by a brilliant strategy by Apple.
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#mwc11: O2 aims for revenue share apps starting with eBay

#mwc11: O2 aims for revenue share apps starting with eBay | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
At Mobile World Congress this week, O2 announced it will pre-install eBay apps on most of its smartphones and mid-market devices in a multi-year deal that will launch in the UK in the summer.

O2 will take a cut of any transactions made on the preloaded app and is looking to repeat the process with other brands that align with its customer base, using different revenue formats.

O2 will also install a folder on each handset that will hold preloaded apps and enable new downloads. When customers upgrade their handset they will be able to transport the folder to another device or app-enabled TV.
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#mwc11: Google's Eric Schmidt on Android's future, HTML5 and more

#mwc11: Google's Eric Schmidt on Android's future, HTML5 and more | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Eric Schmidt's keynote on the second day of Mobile World Congress contained lots of interesting glimpses into Google's thinking – certainly, it has to be said, a much more intriguing one than Steve Ballmer's, and as informative as (but broader than) that by Dick Costolo of Twitter, who followed Ballmer on Monday.

A few choice elements from Schmidt's speech, and from answers to questions:
• "We've got an OS for phones called 'Gingerbread' and one for tablets called 'Honeycomb'. G and H. You can imagine that the next will begin with I and will be named after a dessert, and it will unite them. Android releases follow on in a roughly six-month cycle." (Twitter folk are suggesting that the "I" will be for "Ice Cream" or "Ice Cream Sandwich".)

• Chrome the browser has 120 million active users, up threefold in the past year. "Chrome will provide a programming platform for this next generation of cloud-based applications."

• HTML5 could eventually become the platform that all apps, whether for mobiles or for PCs, are written on. "It's taken 20 years because the underlying standards had to evolve from the proprietary Mac and Windows platforms. But they have both adopted HTML5 as a future direction. So that means in future a lot of apps will be running in HTML5 in both mobile and non-mobile form."

• YouTube doubled revenue in 2010: "We're finally now able to monetise professional content. We have a display [ad] business [online] that's taking off." (Notably, he didn't suggest that YouTube was profitable, and you'd expect that he would have made a lot of noise about it if it were.)

• He has been "surprised" by the monetisation of apps – in the Apple and then the Google ecosystem. (He sounded as though he was surprised at the idea that people will pay for apps; of course if they do then Google, unlike Apple, doesn't get a cut and can't necessarily sell ads against them.)

• Is Facebook a competitor? Google isn't seeing it affecting advertising income. "Our main competitor is Microsoft and Bing."

• The growth in access to mobile "does change the power dynamic between governments and citizens in very interesting ways."
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#mwc11: Google confirms new device coming with new Ice Cream Android operating system

#mwc11: Google confirms new device coming with new Ice Cream Android operating system | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Google has confirmed that new versions of its mobile and tablet operating system, Android, will each be accompanied by new hardware. Andy Rubin, head of Android, and chief executive Eric Schmidt, said that Ice Cream, the forthcoming OS, will bring together the tablet features of Honeycomb and the phone features of Gingerbread.

Speaking at a media event after Mr Schmidt’s keynote at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Mr Rubin said that it was important that new versions of an operating system were not “just a thought experiment,” and that “each software release be accompanied by a hardware component”. He did not elaborate on a manufacturer or a form factor for the new operating system, but said that sales of HTC’s Nexus One had exceeded Google’s expectations. The sequel, the Nexus S, was made by Samsung and the company’s first official tablet, the Xoom, has been made by Motorola.
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#mwc11: GSMA announced iPhone 4 Best Mobile Device

The winners of the 16th Annual Global Mobile Awards were announced at the GSMA Mobile World Congress.

Apple’s iPhone 4 was awarded Best Mobile Device, HTC collected the Best Device Manufacturer Award and Angry Birds picked up the Best Mobile App Award.

There were nine other categories of awards - including prizes for innovation, advertising and ‘green’ technology - all presented by TV and radio personality Jonathan Ross.
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#mwc11: Is this the Kinect of Mobiles?

#mwc11: Is this the Kinect of Mobiles? | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
What if you could gesture your hand in front of a smartphone to command it, browse menus, select items, zoom, rotate and more…? Engineers at XTR (which has Texas Instrument as an investor since 2010) have worked hard on this problem and they think that they have a solution. Their touchless gesture software is touted to work with any platform (this is a single core mobile device). Before you watch the video (in the full post): the general idea is that the camera can recognize the skeletal structure of your hand (it expects a hand). From there, it can recognize hand gesture, but also finger gestures according to XTR. The first productivity boost? You don’t need to wipe your screen anymore ;) Check the video after the jump.
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#mwc11: Google CEO Talks up Potential of Mobile

#mwc11: Google CEO Talks up Potential of Mobile | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Google CEO Eric Schmidt took to the stage at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Tuesday to talk up the Android OS for tablets and phones, in addition to giving nods to Chrome, search and YouTube.

Schmidt said that there are 300,000 Android devices activated daily, and 150,000 apps in the Android app store -- a number that has tripled in the last nine months. Developers now start with mobile apps because that's where the growth is, he added, saying that smartphone sales surpassed PC sales last quarter.

There are a number of trends at work, Schmidt said: cloud computing, which has been present for a long time; the fact that devices are packing in more and more power; and the fact that networks are getting more powerful. Roughly 98 percent of mobile phone operators offer megabyte-per-second speeds, he claimed. What's important about LTE, the newest technology for mobile broadband, is that it will create the opportunity for another set of applications that we can only imagine, Schmidt said.
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Schmidt swings at Apple, "The future is about the masses, not the elitists" #mwc11Feb 15 via TweetDeck

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#mwc11: Microsoft Phones to Be Connected to Xbox

Days after beginning a sure to be lucrative partnership with Nokia Corp. phones, Microsoft Corp wants to connect its phone software to the Xbox before the year’s end. The company is also working on other upgrades including a faster Web browser and decreasing the time it takes to switch between phone applications.
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#mwc11: Why Wi-Fi sucked at Mobile World Congress

#mwc11: Why Wi-Fi sucked at Mobile World Congress | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
There were dozens of Wi-Fi networks at this year's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. But with more than 60,000 people in attendance, the systems were so overloaded that there may as well have been one landline connection with a 56k modem.

Areas marked "free Wi-Fi here" often had no or painfully slow connections. Demonstrations from Microsoft, Google, Intel, Yahoo, Hewlett-Packard and Research In Motion, among others, became comical when the presenters were unable to connect even to their own networks.

"That's the problem with networking conventions," said Google CEO Eric Schmidt during a keynote address this week. "Everyone is on the network."

The problem is easy to understand, but the solution is much more complicated.

Mobile World Congress was a peculiar event in that most people in attendance had smart devices with the ability to connect both to 3G networks as well as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Many of the attendees carried two such gizmos, like a BlackBerry and an Android phone, or an iPhone and an iPad.

That's a whole lotta gadgets trying to suck down a whole lotta data. This year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which draws the same kind of uberwired crowd, had similar connectivity problems.
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#mwc11: ZTE to Include NFC Chips in Phones by Q2

#mwc11: ZTE to Include NFC Chips in Phones by Q2 | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Chinese mobile phone maker ZTE, which managed to make the top-five mobile phone market share like for 2010, says it will start incorporating Near Field Communication (NFC) chips into its phones starting in the second quarter of this year.

With NFC technology, users would be able to simply hold the phone up close to an NFC-equipped pay terminal or scanner and pay for items through a linked bank or credit card account instantly. This could range from convenience store purchases, to things like movie or subway tickets, or even restaurant bills.

Through a partnership with semiconductor company NXP, ZTE says it will incorporate the company's PN544 NFC technology in its smartphones and feature phones, including the Android-based QSC6270, as well as entry-level devices. The chip can work in both battery off and battery low modes, and has been optimized for low power consumption.
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#mwc11: Mobile Payment Technology Offered In Europe This Year

#mwc11: Mobile Payment Technology Offered In Europe This Year | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
German Telecommunications giant Deutsche Telekom has announced that the company plans on bringing mobile payment technology to its customers this year.

The move, which was revealed at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, will see Deutsche Telekom customers in Germany and Poland being offered the chance to make payments by passing their phone over a payment terminal. In other words using their mobiles much like a wallet or credit card.

It is expected that customers in the United States, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic will get the mobile payment service in 2012.

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#mwc11: Yahoo, Intel, Cisco Execs Push for Open Mobile Platforms

#mwc11: Yahoo, Intel, Cisco Execs Push for Open Mobile Platforms | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Executives from Intel, Yahoo, and Cisco on Wednesday echoed a call for openness and interoperability that seems to be a theme among many of the presentations here at Mobile World Congress.

"Users dont want to think what network is out there," said Intel chief Paul Otellini. They just want to connect as fast as possible without thinking about protocols, so "our job is to create capabilities that make using [mobile] devices seamless to the user."

"Increasingly, I believe that users are going to want consistency across all these devices, so our view is you want to start with a consumer-centric or user-centric model," he continued. "Everyone's going to have their own assembly of devices, [but it's] important that we as an industry think about how these devices will interact with one another."

Cisco's John Chambers agreed. When you talk about networks, consumers "eyes glass over; they just want access," he said.

"It's got to be much simpler," Chambers said. Users need to be able to "take any device you're on, anywhere in the world, and connect it to any content you want."
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#mwc11: Intel-Powered Smartphones Coming This Year

#mwc11: Intel-Powered Smartphones Coming This Year | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Intel Corp. (INTC) expects to see smartphones using its chips on the market later this year, Chief Executive Paul Otellini said Wednesday.

Otellini made the statement during a panel discussion at the Mobile World Congress here.

Intel, the world's largest manufacturer of computer chips, hasn't yet commercially launched any chips for smartphones.
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#mwc11: Operators join together for NFC mobiles

Near Field Communications (NFC) trials have been proposed in small doses but apparently all the operators in a UK are pushing the technology forward.

This was the claim made by Charlotte Blanchard, director of products and services at 3, who said her company was deeply involved in moving forward to bring a standard to the technology which would enable tap and pay transactions from a mobile phone.

“NFC is starting to get a lot of traction,” she told IT PRO during a meeting at Mobile World Congress 2011.

“Operators are all behind it [and] we are starting to see manufacturers behind it as well. It feels like all the pieces are coming together.”

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#mwc11: NFC tags could make phones wallets of the future

#mwc11: NFC tags could make phones wallets of the future | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Near-field communication (NFC) could be the breakthrough technology of 2011, some analysts predict.

NFC allows for a wide variety of data transfers over a short distance, and is currently most frequently used to take mobile payments.

Dan Simmons reports from the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, on how manufacturers are looking to capitalise on the technology already in use by Google and Nokia, and rumoured to be a feature on Apple's next incarnation of the iPhone.
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#mwc11: Toshiba offers sneak peek at 'premium' tablet

#mwc11: Toshiba offers sneak peek at 'premium' tablet | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
After its Android-powered Folio 100 suffered something of a consumer nightmare in 2010, Japanese electronics specialist Toshiba has this week unveiled a fresh-face slab of tablet computing at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Although the device is as-yet unnamed, Toshiba claims it will boasts “premium specifications”, which would suggest the final product will be far removed from the Folio 100 in terms of both performance and pricing.

In terms of core fixtures and fittings, the tablet will carry a 10.1-inch capacitive touchscreen (1200x800), light-sensitive Adaptive Display Technology, the new dual-core Tegra 2 ‘system on a chip’ processing platform, and Google’s tablet-optimised Android operating system (Honeycomb).

Other contributing elements include front-facing and rear-facing cameras, support for video chatting, two USB ports, HDMI-out, a built-in accelerometer, and data storage expansion via microSD.
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#mwc11: Glu Mobile Brings Mobile Gaming To The Next Level

#mwc11: Glu Mobile Brings Mobile Gaming To The Next Level | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Glu Mobile has been all over the place in this all about Android version of the Mobile World Congress. Glu Mobile was announces as a roll out partner for the upcoming Sony Xperia Play on Sunday night.

In a pre-show briefing with Glumobile they told Thedroidguy that they would be bringing their popular titles to both the Sony Xperia Play and the Motorola Xoom. Sony revealed that Guitar Hero would be part of the Xperia Plays initial offerings. Glu also told us that their popular Family Guy uncensored would make it over to the Xperia Play as well.

On the Honeycomb side Glu Mobile has really taken gaming to the next level. At CES we had a video of their Toy Shop Adventures playing on the Acer Honeycomb tablet with Andy as the star. The game since released to Android is great on most screens and devices but faster and more realistic on the Honeycomb tablets.
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#mwc11: Android Ice Cream will combine Honeycomb for tablets, Gingerbread for phones

#mwc11: Android Ice Cream will combine Honeycomb for tablets, Gingerbread for phones | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
With Google positioning Android 3.0, also known as Honeycomb, as a tablet-only operating system, it’s been unclear when similar upgrades will make their way to phones. Today while on stage at the Mobile World Congress conference in Barcelona, Google’s Eric Schmidt shed some light on the matter.

Schmidt said that the next version of Android, which will “start with an I [and] be named after a dessert”, will combine the current Gingerbread release for phones (Android version 2.3 and 2.4) with Honeycomb for tablets (version 3.0) into a single OS. That means we shouldn’t expect to see Honeycomb running on phones anytime soon, and that Ice Cream will be the next major Android update for phones.

Ice Cream, which will likely be labeled Android 3.1, will bring the exciting interface improvements to phones that Google has been showing off for Honeycomb tablets.
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#mwc11: Xperia Play Phone May Not Have the Juice for Serious Gaming

#mwc11: Xperia Play Phone May Not Have the Juice for Serious Gaming | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
Sony Ericsson has released details on the Xperia Play, the so-called PlayStation phone the company's been hinting about for weeks. "With a 1 GHz processor, the Play won't be any more powerful than any other phone on the market right now. That means it's up to Sony to bring content that will differentiate it," said consultant Steve Palley.
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#mwc11: GSMA and Neustar to Work with Twitter for Real-time Mobile Communications Delivery

#mwc11: GSMA and Neustar to Work with Twitter for Real-time Mobile Communications Delivery | Mobile World Congress | Scoop.it
The GSMA and Neustar, Inc., (NYSE: NSR), a leader in providing carriers and enterprises with solutions for sending calls, messages, and content across networks worldwide, today announced that they will work with Twitter, Inc. to ensure subscribers can reliably access their Twitter stream in real-time - even when they change mobile operators - by using the GSMA PathFinder Service.

"Neustar is proud to work with the GSMA and Twitter to ensure that people around the world are able to connect to their social life as it happens," said Steve Edwards, senior vice president, Carrier Services at Neustar. "Twitter is showing tremendous innovation and leadership by using Pathfinder as part of its reliable infrastructure for its network of users."
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