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It’s been a while since I was boots on the ground in Barcelona, but as an event where I clocked up thousands of steps chasing down briefings for clients over the years, and met my now husband, I do like to keep abreast of the latest and greatest in the mobile world.

Although I am generally a B2B tech girl, my eye was first caught by the Samsung Galaxy smart ring which was unveiled today at the show. I’m addicted to my smartwatch, but also horribly allergic, so it struck a chord with me. Other big consumer tech news coming out of Barcelona

include new flagship handsets from Xiaomi, new eye-tracking tech to rival Apple (who don’t attend MWC) from the Honor Magic 6 Pro, and a concept laptop device from Lenovo featuring a transparent display. Good for meetings I guess to stop everyone hiding behind their screens?!

In the crossover of B2B and B2C, former client Qualcomm has announced their latest Snapdragon X80 chipset for Android devices, adding AI for better 5G connectivity amongst other new features. And of course they’re not the only ones talking about AI at the show – far from it.

As covered by Mobile Europe, MWC saw the official proclamation of the creation of the AI-RAN Alliance, a new initiative designed to integrate AI into cellular technology to advance RAN technology and mobile networks, and featuring the likes of AWS, Ericsson, Microsoft, Nokia, NVIDIA, Samsung Electronics and T-Mobile USA – amongst others.

Meanwhile Tecnotree was able to claim the successful completion of 14 simultaneous AI and digital transformations for customers across North America, the Middle East, Africa and Latam, as well as a new contract with Umniah Jordan – so a big day for them!

Staying in the realms of OSS/BSS, Qvantel today announced that Very Mobile has migrated Qvantel Flex BSS to AWS cloud. With its no/low code approach of configuration over coding, Qvantel Flex BSS enables Very Mobile to quickly react to market opportunities and deliver great customer experience.

Sustainability is also on the agenda for this year’s event, with Nokia publicly committing to reaching net zero by 2040. This reduces its former target by ten years and puts it ahead of wider global goals set by the Paris Agreement. As Catalonia experiences severe drought during the event and the GSMA works closely with Barcelona authorities to minimise the environmental impact of the show, it will be interesting to watch what other climate pledges emerge.

Jen Hibberd

Jen is a Director at Liberty Communications

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