The number of visitors and participating companies is increasing rapidly after COVID-19.

Under the theme of ‘The Future Comes First’, you can experience various latest mobile technologies.

2024 Mobile World Congress Overview

Mobile World Congress (MWC) will be held at the Barcelona International Exhibition Center (Fira Barcelona) in Spain from February 2024 to 2, 26. This event, which started in 29, is considered one of the world's top three tech events, along with CES in the United States and IFA Consumer Electronics Show in Germany, and has been held in Barcelona since 1987. As its name suggests, MWC, unlike other tech events, focuses on the wireless communications industry. Therefore, you can check out the latest mobile-related technologies of global IT companies, hear industry insights from internationally influential prominent figures, and meet future technologies that can change the global market in the future, attracting the attention of the industry.

MWC, which celebrates its 19th anniversary this year, has achieved great results in 2022 and 2023 as well. First of all, the number of visitors increased significantly from 2022 in 6 to 2023 in 8. More than half of the visitors are at director level or higher, and 9000% of them are members of the C-Suite, giving them the opportunity to meet key company figures with business decision-making authority during the event. Additionally, the number of participating companies has increased significantly from 21 in 2022 to 1500 in 2023. Organizers predicted that the number of visitors to this year's event would reach 2400 to 9, and that the number of participating companies would remain similar to last year.


<View of the 2023 MWC event venue>

[Source: Self-portrait of the Madrid Trade Center]


MWC organizers set this year's main theme as 'Future First'. This means that related industries, companies, and countries must quickly join forces to maximize the potential of wireless communications. To this end, the organizers set the main themes of the event as 1) 5G and Beyond, 5) Connecting Everything, 2) Humanizing AI, and 3) Manufacturing DX. , 4) Game Changers, and 5) Our Digital DNA were selected.

2024 MWC major events

As mentioned earlier, the number of exhibiting companies participating in this year's MWC is expected to reach about 2400, continuing from the previous year. Representative global companies confirmed to participate include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google, Ericsson, Microsoft, Samsung Electronics, Qualcomm, Huawei, Airbus, and Deloitte, but Apple is expected to not participate. They will present a variety of products and services in the mobile field, and this year in particular, interest is expected to be focused on technologies related to AI, cloud computing, and industrial connectivity. In addition, through the GLOMO (Global Mobile Awards) awards held during MWC, companies that stood out in 6 categories divided into 30 categories (mobile, digital, devices, good technology, government leadership, and excellent achievements) An organization will be selected, and by examining the technologies submitted by the selected companies, it will be possible to see what areas the global mobile industry is currently focusing on.


At this year's MWC, you can meet more than 1000 mobile industry experts through various conferences, seminars, and sessions. Among these, the event that deserves priority attention is the keynote speakers, and a total of 1 industry figures are scheduled to participate as of January 29th. The most notable speeches include 'New Strategies for a New Era' by Microsoft Vice Chairman Brad Smith and Dell CEO Mike Dell, and Antonio Neri. and ‘Powering the Future,’ attended by Hewlett-Packard Chairman and Huawei Chairman Peng Li. In addition, although the topic of the speech is not yet known, attention is expected to be focused on the speech by Demis Hassabis of Google DeepMind, who is confirmed to attend.

In addition, a separate 'Connected Industries' space will be set up at the event venue where you can see what innovations are created through the convergence of industries in the 4th Industrial Revolution. The space is largely divided into four fields (manufacturing, smart mobility, fintech and mobile commerce, and sports and entertainment), and various seminars are held through summits in each field. First of all, at the Manufacturing Summit, you can see what changes technologies such as the Internet of Things, AI, Edge Computing, and 5G are causing in the manufacturing industry, and at the Smart Mobility Summit, you can see how automobiles, aviation, logistics, shared mobility, shipping, and railways are changing. We take a look at what kind of digitalization is happening in various fields. At the Fintech and Mobile Commerce Summit, you can see how technologies such as cloud, AI, and 5G are affecting the industry, and at the Sports and Entertainment Summit, you can see what new experiences the mobile industry can provide to the sports and entertainment industry. We would like to take a look at this, etc.

The GSMA Ministerial Program is also a side event worth watching with interest. This event is an opportunity for high-ranking officials from governments, telecommunications regulators, international organizations, and industry CEOs to meet to share knowledge and discuss policies and regulations in the mobile industry. The 2023 event will feature 150 ministers and ministers from 70 countries. More than 100 representatives from regulatory authorities participated. This year, sessions such as ‘Responsible AI: Following and Ethical Compass’ and ‘Steering the Digital Economy’ are expected to attract attention.

In addition, 4YFN (4 Years From Now), the world's largest startup event, will be held at MWC. This side event is a meeting place between promising startup companies around the world and the world's leading venture capitals and incubators, and about 2023 companies will participate in 800. Among these, startups selected in the top 50 will receive pitching opportunities for investors, and companies that win the 4YFN Award will receive a prize of 2 euros and free participation in the 2025 MWC. In addition, various conferences and events will be held on topics such as AI, decentralization, and startup growth/funding/innovation.

Meanwhile, KOTRA plans to operate a Korean pavilion at MWC together with the Korea Information and Communication Technology Industry Association, and a total of 32 companies (19 general companies and 19 startups) will participate in the Korean pavilion. The biggest feature this year is that 9 domestic organizations, including KOTRA and the Korea Information and Communication Technology Industry Association, will form an integrated Korea pavilion, where approximately 100 Korean companies will showcase the latest mobile-related technologies. In addition, in early February, we plan to provide a landing page service that allows you to view information on Korean companies participating in MWC at a glance through the integrated Korean pavilion.

Prospects and Implications

In order to realize a faster and more tightly connected online network, new technologies and new markets are constantly being created around the world, so interest in MWC events is expected to increase in the future. According to A Sawa, an IT company visiting this MWC event, the Spanish government is using a significant portion of the Corona recovery fund for the digitalization of homes, businesses, and public institutions, and general companies are also using various mobile solutions to survive in the increasingly fierce competition. They showed great interest in and expressed their position that visiting MWC is essential to check global mobile trends and network with competitive companies.

Among them, the 5G service market, which is the basis for high-speed wireless Internet infrastructure, is expected to grow even faster in the future. Grand View Research predicts that the global 5G service market will reach a CAGR of 2023% from 2030 to 59.4, reaching a market size of $2 trillion. In particular, these 2000G services will be used for vehicle-to-vehicle communication (V5V). ), vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication, and unmanned vehicles are expected to be widely used in the transportation and logistics fields. In addition, based on 2G infrastructure, the number of IoT devices worldwide is expected to increase to 5 billion within the next two years, and fixed wireless access (FWA) and Open RAN are required to maintain stable and fast Internet connections between these objects. ), interest in new technologies such as hyperscale is expected to increase further, and discussions on investment in 2G infrastructure are also expected to take place in earnest.

In particular, generative AI, which has recently attracted worldwide attention, has significantly increased its contribution to the global economy, and is expected to become one of the areas covered most in depth at MWC. According to PWC Consulting, the economic value of AI to the global market is expected to reach $2030 trillion by 15, of which $7000 trillion will be generated from general consumption and $9 trillion from improved productivity. I expected it to be. In particular, many companies are already actively introducing solutions that combine technologies such as AI, robots, and AR/VR to improve productivity, and this field is expected to play a large part in future MWC events.


Source: Comprehensive data from KOTRA Madrid Trade Center, including MWC website, Grand View Research, PWC, and interviews with IT company A


 Source: KOTRA