so I went to the Barcelona zoo…

also known as the Mobile World Congress. Phew.

It was quite a show. 60,000 visitors supposedly. It was the first time I had been and it was quite surprising – and not in a good way.

Perhaps if I’d thought about it – it would have become obvious in retrospect but MWC is like an entire conference devoted to the guy who’s too old to be at the nightclub – yet still insists on going.

Yes I know that not everything is about mobile, social, location and apps – and yes I know that the world doesn’t revolve around iphone 4 and Nexus S users however it was just bizarre how telco the entire conference was. I remember commented about this when I presented at UpLinq (which is I suppose a sort of US based equivalent of MWC) but in Barcelona it really hits you in the face.

The carriers and most of the companies that work with them (supplying bandwidth, services, hardware etc etc) have ZERO idea as to where the market has moved. They might aswell still be selling US Robotics Sportster modems.

I mean – when a company as large and cumbersome as Verizon appears to be amongst the more proactive ones then you know you’re in trouble. I actually had a good chat with some of the developer outreach folks from Verizon – and they’re really trying to take apps seriously (at least as much as their senior management will let them)

Let’s see – The Google/Android area was of course awesome – Matt Hershenson’s hardware hacked Nexus S handsets allowing HDMI output really shined here. They’re pretty much the only way to do HDMI output from Android phones properly. (hacking Droid X units with RealHDMI is not the same as you get a smaller 854×480 insert on a 1280×720 screen)

But other than that area and maybe (just maybe) some of the Samsung stuff – it was really fairly dry and boring there.

Had a good time hanging with @jebinger, John Malloy and @webbizceo (aka Damien Patton) at the Blue Run dinner.

Barcelona didn’t exactly provide great weather – but I escaped from rain to a nice lunch with Christine Claure from Navteq. I also had time to connect with Tom Goguen (@tomgoguen) who thinks it would be great if BBM (BlackBerry Messenger) could speak echoecho.

So do we Tom, so do we.

I guess if nothing else – it was nice to see our final product coming together and getting some serious market validation at a very high level – which is a nice segue into the next post…our coming out party at Launch 2011


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