Mobile world congress once again saw record crowds with 108,000+ professionals from all around the world, attending the show is one of the top-tier events you can go to and see what Andreessen Horowitz mean when they say that mobile is eating the world.

While we are not at the level of Sundar Pichai in an AI first world we are definitely living in a mobile first world, and the extent of that mobile in terms of hours spent engaged and reach of the engagement from a world population perspective is astonishing.

Here are the key insights I picked up while at the show again this year:

Apps & Data

With app downloads reaching 224 billion in 2016 the world of gaming is still huge but apps have spread out much further and broader, including utilities, movies (Netflix), music (Spotify). But as these apps are getting more and more data intensive the pressure has been put on to the Telco’s to increase data limits or to go mobile first and have apps pre-installed into the handset OS.

You can clearly see why Telco’s are looking to get a closer relationship with the data being transmitted through there networks and handsets. With this data Telco’s can start to monetise further by creating there own data management platforms to enrich supply side platform inventory based on behavioural data. It’s one way that the industry can fight back against the 90% of online advertising revenue being collected by Facebook and Google.

Video

Mobile video is right now is the fastest growing part of the market. Supply initially outstripped demand due to logistics however that with the exponential rise in mobile technology the demand is now equally as hot. Why? Because video advertising works. Works very well if you look at the data.

Video has been adding in all the dimensions that static misses and the addition of those elements is causing a mass influx of app downloads, brand engagement and retention while costing dramatically less CPM’s than mass broadcasting TV.

Robots

I have spoke before about the impending take over of smart robots automating to execute on everything better than a human being, and over the past few years it still felt like a ‘future’ thing.

This was the first show I have been to where I felt the power of exponential technologies converging.

For example there were robots reading emotions, others playing the drums like the next Travis Barker, and the famous NAO robot tapping into artificial intelligence to give thought out answers to complex questions.

As always the networking, learning (favourite keynote) and parties in Barcelona was first-rate and would recommend anyone in the mobile sphere to get out there if you can.