The Ultimate Survival Guide: Mobile World Congress
“Intelligent Connectivity.” The vision for the upcoming Mobile World Congress (MWC) is about more than simply convening mobile technology professionals. It challenges those who are driving mobile transformation to think, design, and create beyond what’s possible today. With more than 107,000 expected attendees, 2,400 exhibitors, and over 320 speakers, MWC is the largest mobile technology and telecommunications industry show and one of the largest conferences in the world. The annual convention provides leaders in mobile tech from around the globe a collaborative platform to create a better future, today.
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All About #MWC19Mobile World Congress offers attendees and exhibitors extensive opportunities for networking, education, and innovation. In 2018, more than 107,000 professionals from 208 countries attended the show, including 5,500 CEOs. This year, attendance is expected to be even higher. More than 320 scheduled speakers will deliver presentations on topics that fit into seven event themes, including:
- Industry 4.0
- Immersive Content
- Disruptive Innovation
- Digital Wellness
- Digital Trust
- The Future
Logistics and Mobile World Congress TipsThe Mobile World Congress is huge in terms of attendees and venue. But have no fear, we’ve compiled helpful resources to ensure you’re equipped with everything you need to navigate the halls easily and allocate your time wisely.
Pick Up Your BadgeYour badge is your key to the conference. The GSMA will send registered attendees an email a week before the event with instructions for collecting it. International guests can retrieve their badges at the Barcelona Airport. Find other pickup locations here. Make sure to bring:
- The QR code (included in email)
- Your passport or EU National ID card
The VenueBarcelona’s Fira Gran Via will host the conference. The building, designed by Japanese architect and Pritzker Prize winner Toyo Ito, is one of the largest and most modern venues in Europe. Some conference events will also take place at Fira Montjuïc and La Farga L’Hospitalet. Find them on the map here. Think ahead: With a cool 100,000+ extra people in town, traffic will be dense. Plan your transportation accordingly. By foot, the venues are a 30-40 minute trek, so wear comfortable shoes.
ExhibitionsOver the course of the 4-day conference, more than 2,400 companies will showcase cutting edge mobile technology and products. (Say hi to us from WalkMe in Hall 2 E50) The exhibitors will span 100,000 square meters of space across 9 halls. Within them, zones and pavilions are organized according to industry sectors, such as IoT, Nex Gen technologies, and wearables. There are also pavilions organized by country, so you can target geographical regions that make sense for your business. Innovation City, one of the Mobile World Congress’s most visited exhibition spaces, is located in Hall 4. The City hosts some of GSMA’s leading initiatives, such as #BetterFuture, GSMA Internet of Things, Mobile for Development: Humanitarian Innovation Showcase, and more. There, attendees can also meet representatives from leading mobile brands, such as Huawei, KT Corporation, Sierra Wireless, and Turkcell. Think ahead: Simply wandering through the exhibition halls is not a productive approach for navigating a conference of this size. We recommend creating a list of the companies you’d like to visit each day and mapping them out in advance.
NetworkingIn addition to viewing the latest mobile technology and hearing from industry-renowned thought leaders, attendees also have the opportunity to network with colleagues from around the globe. The Mobile World Congress provides plenty of space for face-to-face meetings with potential partners and clients. It has 11 networking gardens throughout the Fira Gran Via and several networking lounges. At the end of the day, attendees can enjoy complimentary food, drinks, and entertainment at their choice of networking events. Find the schedule here. Think ahead: Don’t wait until you arrive to arrange meetings. People’s schedules fill up quickly, so it’s best to reach out in advance. Note that some networking lounges require advanced booking, and some are reserved for a specific type of pass. For instance, PwC’s VIP Networking Lounge is open only to Gold and Platinum Pass holders. Before scheduling your meetings, be sure to check on room requirements.
Your Packing ListThe attire for the conference is business professional. In addition to your wardrobe, don’t forget these other essentials.
- Comfortable walking shoes. Do not underestimate the power of a blister.
- Business cards. Print twice as many as you think you’ll need. Then bring some more.
- Laptop or tablet. We recommend a tablet if you have one—they’re lighter and less bulky.
- Chargers for all of your electronics. External batteries are an even better option. The competition for charging stations can be fierce.
- Notebook and pen. Old school, eh? But nothing’s better for jotting a few quick notes following presentations and meetings.
- Watch. Don’t be the person who pulls out their phone every 10 minutes to check the time.
Enjoy Barcelona!Barcelona is a beautiful and historic city, with many museums, monuments, sights, and restaurants worth visiting. If you have time to spare on your trip to the Mobile World Congress, be sure to check out some of our favorite spots:
- The Gothic Quarter
- La Rambla
- Plaça Reial
- La Sagrada Familia and Park Güell
- Plaça Catalunya
- Museu Picasso
- Fundació Joan Miró
- Parc de la Ciutadella
- Barcelona Beach