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Barcelona hosts the world’s main event of the mobile industry this week

The GSMA Mobile World Congress, the main international trade fair and congress for cell-phone-related industries, is being held in the Catalan capital from Monday the 25th of February until Thursday the 28th. 70,000 attendees, half of which are senior executives from 200 different countries, are coming to Barcelona to develop new business opportunities and discover the sector’s novelties. With 94,000 square metres of exhibition space, 1,500 participating companies and 300 speakers, the 2013 MWC will break all previous records, and it will be the 8th consecutive year it has been organised in Barcelona. In addition, Barcelona will unveil its new Mobile World Hub by June, aiming to become the world capital of the mobile industries in its own right.

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25 February 2013 11:07 PM

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ACN

L\u2019Hospitalet de Llobregat (ACN).- The GSMA Mobile World Congress, the main international trade fair and congress for cell-phone-related industries, is being held in the Catalan capital from Monday the 25th of February until Thursday the 28th. 70,000 attendees, half of which are senior executives from 200 different countries, are coming to Barcelona to develop new business opportunities and discover the sector\u2019s novelties. With 94,000 square metres of exhibition space, 1,500 participating companies and 300 speakers, the 2013 MWC will break all previous records, and it will be the 8th consecutive year it has been organised in Barcelona. In addition, Barcelona will unveil its new Mobile World Hub by June, aiming to become the world capital of the mobile industries in its own right. The MWHub will become a platform to foster entrepreneurship, spread knowledge and act as the international standardisation body for this industry. Furthermore, as from this year, the Catalan capital will have a permanent centre to showcase mobile solutions and host networking activities, located in the city centre. It will also host a festival throughout the year organising cultural and social activities related to the mobile industry. For all these reasons, the Catalan Minister for Business and Employment, Felip Puig, encouraged the companies participating to the Mobile World Congress \u201Cto set up a permanent operations base\u201D in Barcelona. This would enable them to be in this new ecosystem for the mobile industry and would contribute to the transformation of Barcelona into a permanent meeting point for cell-phone-related industries at a world level.


The connected city and NFC technology

Puig also encouraged the companies to use Barcelona as \u201Ca lab\u201D to experiment with projects of smart buildings, mobile healthcare and long-distance education. In fact, the creation of an interconnected city, in which all its inhabitants and objects communicate with each other via wireless Internet, is one of the main attractions of this year\u2019s event. Another strong interest point is NFC technology, which enables a mobile device to interact with another terminal or gadget only by being near them. For instance, this will enable people to use their cell-phones like a wallet, to make payments, by just moving their mobile device over a payment terminal. It can also help travellers to orientate themselves by only moving their mobile towards a street sign or map.

70 Catalan companies are participating in the 2013 MWC

70 Catalan companies are participating in the Mobile World Congress. 48 of which will be present at Catalonia\u2019s stand, organised by the Catalan Government. Most of them are focused on the development of apps. For instance, one company, WeSmartpark, has developed an application to share car parking spaces by the hour. This way, the regular user of a parking spot can rent it out for certain hours while he or she is at work. This will also save money for the person parking for a few hours, as the price will be cheaper than that of official parking sites. Another company, Good Deal, has developed a machine to print supermarket discount coupons using QR codes. They noticed that customers get their discount coupons once they pay and are about to leave the shop, and on many occasions they forget about them or they leave the coupons at home once they come back to the supermarket. With this new technology, customers will be able to print the coupons they are interested in when they arrive at the supermarket and use them as they pass through the checkout. Furthermore, instead of using their loyalty card, customers will be able to use their cell-phone to print the coupons.

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  • Attendees can charge their mobile device within a secure locker (by J. Pueyo)

  • The southern entrance of the 2013 GSMA Mobile World Congress on Sunday, the day before the event's kick off (by J. Pueyo)

  • NFC is one of the main drives of the 2013 Mobile World Congress (by J. Pueyo)

  • Catalonia's stand with 48 Catalan companies at the Mobile World Congress (by O. Campuzano)

  • A welcome sign at the south entrance of the 2013 GSMA Mobile World Congress (by O. Campuzano)

  • Attendees can charge their mobile device within a secure locker (by J. Pueyo)
  • The southern entrance of the 2013 GSMA Mobile World Congress on Sunday, the day before the event's kick off (by J. Pueyo)
  • NFC is one of the main drives of the 2013 Mobile World Congress (by J. Pueyo)
  • Catalonia's stand with 48 Catalan companies at the Mobile World Congress (by O. Campuzano)
  • A welcome sign at the south entrance of the 2013 GSMA Mobile World Congress (by O. Campuzano)