So we’re a few weeks after the very first Mobile World Congress Americas (MWCA), and it’s interesting to look back and see how the event matched up to expectations. For an inaugural event, MWCA had some hits and some misses. We held some very interesting customer meetings. The Innovation City area was buzzing. But elsewhere, there was a lot of open space that created a feeling of sparse attendance. In fact, attendance was off forecast with 21,000 or so attendees, and the construction activity around the expansive Moscone Center area served to make the physical layout a bit disjointed. However it was a great start for this new event. Let’s see if the move to LA next year shows the event going more mainstream.

Nevertheless, 21,000 attendees and 1,000 exhibitors makes for a challenging network environment! And Cisco was happy to have worked with the GSMA to successfully provide carrier-grade Wi-Fi network experiences for MWCA, which allowed the GSMA to offer free high-speed Wi-Fi service to MWC Americas attendees as well as connectivity services to exhibitors. During the event, nearly 22,000 devices authenticated to the network and, amazingly, roughly 65% of them did so via Hotspot 2.0 (aka, Wi-Fi Certified Passpoint) enabled by Service Providers who support it for carrier offloading from cellular to Wi-Fi. Cisco has been an early proponent and supporter of HS2.0 in our Wireless LAN solutions to enable automatic authentication of mobile devices with SIM and SP-profile based connection on the Wi-Fi network.

With our Wi-Fi network analytics solutions, we also harvested a lot of interesting event-level data. For example, we know that 7.5 terabytes of data were carried throughout the conference. For more, check out some of our published results here:

We’ll see you next year at Mobile World Congress Americas!


Brian Walsh

Senior Marketing Manager