GSMA causes confusion with a strange choice of taxis at Congress 2010

“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated” or so said Mark Twain, once upon a time in a country far far away. Isn’t it great how a little bit of information (or misinformation) can have such a profound effect on the way the world is viewed?

Do you remember where you were when you heard that Nokia were not exhibiting at the Mobile World Congress 2010? Followed by the collective gasps of horror, the ‘tsks’ and ‘tuttings’ and inevitable barrage of rhetorical questions. Was this the end of the show as we knew it?  Would the congress go the way of the likes of Comdex etc?  Did anybody care?

Well no, I don’t think they did. Why?  Because the mobile industry has grown up. They are no longer the ‘kids in hoodies’ hassling the big fixed line communication providers as they try to hang onto shrinking marketplaces and margins.

The mobile boys dumped their ‘L’Enfant terrible’ image years ago and they are ready to do business with the new masters of the mobile world; the companies that offer the holy grail of the mobile marketplace:  “Content Monetization” … if you are allowed to utter such an awful phrase.

Those new masters are the media companies. Disney, Google, News International, Electronic Arts, Sony Pictures etc; the list goes on. As does their list of premium interactive content which we, the viewing, button bashing public, just can’t get enough of.

So what if Nokia hasn’t spent millions of Euros building a booth?  No doubt they will have several hundred of their elite Finnish shock troopers going into battle all over the Fira and up and down “Las Ramblas” doing deals, pressing flesh and generally making their presence felt.

I wouldn’t bet my house on whether the Congress is going to be around forever but in my opinion as long as the operators want to keep selling airtime and m-commerce services, handset manufacturers want to shift volume and the whole world wants to watch the “The Simpsons” on the move Mobile World Congress ain’t going nowhere.


NEWS JUST IN: Nokia Microsite went live today announcing the rumoured presence in Barcelona.  Still – you get our point about Disney and stuff.