MWC 2024: Discover the power of vertical innovations at MWC Barcelona

The GSMA’s Head of Connected Industries, IoT and Identity, Richard Cockle outlines some of the must-see innovations at MWC Barcelona from industries beyond mobile

Why are vertical markets such an important part of MWC Barcelona?

As digital technologies have become ubiquitous in every walk of life, telecoms has transformed into a horizontal industry that is now partnered with every other sector in our connected world.

MWC is no longer just about mobile, and we celebrate the broader ecosystem of players who are central to digital transformation.

The industry’s transition is reflected in the profile of attendees we now see at MWC Barcelona; of the 88,500 attendees at last year’s event, 56% represented industries adjacent to the core mobile ecosystem – and we expect to see this trend remain for 2024.

Where can I see vertical innovations at MWC Barcelona?

We’ll have a number of exhibition spaces and keynotes that shine a light on innovations unfolding across adjacent industries.

Connected Industries, located in Hall 4, is our dedicated area for a huge range of connected businesses and organisations, from health and hospitality, mining and maritime, to aviation and agriculture. It’s the place where the world’s most influential decision makers, representing diverse industries, gather to exhibit, debate and network on the future of connectivity.

Also in Hall 4, we’ll have the GSMA Foundry – the home of telco innovation – located at the GSMA Pavilion. The GSMA Foundry will house real-world industry demos showcasing how industries – including space, mobility, fitness and critical infrastructure – are using mobile technologies to drive positive outcomes for their businesses and society.

Turning to the line-up of speakers on the MWC Main Stage, you’ll see executives from many of the familiar names that you’d expect, including Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefónica, Vodafone, and more. But we’re also thrilled to be welcoming leaders from the entire connected ecosystem, including Accenture, Alef Aeronautics, Dell Technologies, Google DeepMind, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, the National University of Singapore, PwC, The B Team, the UN’s AI Advisory Body, and many, many more.

What will I be able to see?

GSMA Foundry is a must-attend space for anybody looking to see how industries are pushing the boundaries of connectivity in new and innovative ways.

We’re honoured to have representatives from the European Space Agency (ESA) present at the ESA’s Foundry booth to engage with attendees on the ESA’s latest Satellite Telecommunications initiatives. The booth will also showcase some of the Agency’s most captivating projects, delving into the world of non-terrestrial networks through metaverse experiences and virtual tours of the 5G/6G Hub.

Meanwhile, Unmanned Life will demonstrate its autonomous indoor drones which are being deployed across ports, construction sites and other critical infrastructure facilities. The drones are equipped with AI computer vision that allows for real-time person detection to keep sensitive sites more secure, and represent a real-world application of a GSMA Open Gateway Quality-on-Demand API.

Which industries will be on show?

While our exhibitors and attendees hail from every sector under the connectivity umbrella, our Connected Industries space will have four dedicated ‘Summits’. These represent the industries where mobile technologies are having an unprecedented impact – Smart Mobility, Manufacturing, FinTech & Mobile Commerce, and Sports & Entertainment.

Each day of the show will see leaders from these four industries take to the Connected Industries Stage for a packed agenda of sessions focused around the latest trends and issues impacting their sector.

  • Day 1 – Smart Mobility: With connected automotive and aerial mobility on the cusp of widespread availability, the Smart Mobility Summit will delve into topics such as the connected vehicle revolution, the commercialisation of drones and the digital transformation of our railway networks.
    • Featured speakers include HARMAN, Qualcomm Technologies, Skyports Infrastructure, Thales, Volvo Cars, Wind River Systems.
  • Day 2 – Manufacturing: IoT Technologies, combined with AI, edge computing and 5G, are driving digital transformation towards Industry 4.0. The Manufacturing Summit will explore the emergence of robots in Smart Factories and the rise of industrial AI.
    • Featured speakers include Bosch, Dassault Systèmes, NTT Data, Petronas, Trend Micro Inc.
  • Day 3 – FinTech & Mobile Commerce: Mobile technology is at the heart of FinTech, a market that is set to exceed $225bn in value by 2024. The FinTech & Mobile Commerce Summit will analyse the emerging fraud landscape and what’s in store for the next generation of payments and mobile commerce.
    • Featured speakers include Bolttech, Chenosis, FSISAC, Onfido, Palo Alto, Trustonic and Worldpay.
  • Day 4 – Sports & Entertainment: Mobile technologies have emerged as an invaluable ally to the sports & entertainment industries, providing innovative ways to create more memorable experiences for fans and guests. The Sports & Entertainment Summit will delve into the transformation of gaming and look at how the entertainment industry is embracing new technologies.
    • Featured speakers include the team behind the 37th America’s Cup, Activision Blizzard, FC Barcelona, King and Xsolla.

With just over one week left until MWC Barcelona opens its doors, now is the time to register for your chance to see how mobile technologies are changing the face of industries. If you are a member of the press planning to attend, please do reach out to our PR team on to say hi – we’d love to connect!

See more: MWC 2024: Snowflake to showcase telco AI innovations and enhanced ecosystem partnerships at MWC

See more: MWC 2024: Businesses favor gradual adoption of GenAI as they look to address knowledge gaps

See more: MWC 2024: J.P. Morgan Payments: Rethink payments to power innovation