Cool Stuff You're Missing at Mobile World Congress #MWC15

4 minute read
Virginia Backaitis avatar

So what if it’s a little cloudy in Barcelona, Spain today. The high is 76 degrees Fahrenheit. Those of us who live in the US Northeast would certainly enjoy the reprieve from the snow and the cold.

But the weather isn’t the reason that we’d be near the shores of the Mediterranean today. The Mobile World Congress is the draw.

It’s the event where vendors like Samsung are unveiling iPhone rivals, where Microsoft is revealing its revamped mobile play and IBM is showing off the spawn of its marriage to Apple … and so much more.

Can Apple Help IBM Rock?

It’s possible to make workplace apps that everyone loves. Syncplicity has done it via its “Beautiful, Brainy, Impenetrable” mobile app. Microsoft has successfully brought Office apps to mobile devices that are widely used, and Salesforce has gone mobile-first on its Analytics Cloud.

So will IBM’s launch of three new IBM Mobile First iOS mobile apps it developed together with Apple wow Business? Today the company unveiled Dynamic Buy for the Retail industry, Passenger Care for the Travel and Transportation industry, and Advisor Alert for the Banking industry.

Dynamic Buy is supposed to make retailers smarter and depend less on hunches and more on data. It promises to help retailers gain real-time perspective and data-driven recommendations on how products are performing and seasonal recommendations, for example, helping retailers realize better return on investments.


Passenger Care is geared toward the Travel and Transportation industry to equip customer service reps with the information they need to assist passengers from anywhere at any time. The idea is to speed check in, shorten lines and offer a more personalized experience.


Advisor Alerts are supposed to help Financial Services professionals prioritize the needs of clients by leveraging analytics and providing a personalized dashboard that displays recommended next steps, portfolio-impacting alerts, and provides a communications platform to quickly delegate tasks to teams back in the office.

IBM says it has 50 companies signed on to use the apps, so needless to say, we’ll look for them, eyes wide open.

Is There Still Life in Windows Phones?

Despite evidence to the contrary, Microsoft still believes you’ll want a Windows Mobile Device. In Barcelona, Chris Weber, Microsoft’s head of mobile device sales, told the Wall Street Journal that Microsoft plans to leverage Windows 10 when it unveils its next phone.

The plan is less about making the phone cool (because though the masses don’t buy it, many like its models, its OS and the UI). It’s more about using the draw of Windows billion business users to woo app developers. Windows 10, after all, will be the OS for both desktops and mobile.

Learning Opportunities

Samsung Galaxy S6 Woos the Enterprise


Samsung is out to reclaim its mobile phone throne from Apple with its Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. And though its slim body made from aircraft-grade metal, wireless charging capabilities, curved edges and 64-bit, 14-nanometer Exynos processors give it plenty of appeal, it needs apps that make the most of those features.

Today’s phones need to appeal both to the consumer and to the Enterprise. And Samsung has gone the extra mile in the case of the latter. It offers Knox protection, which is calls “ defense-grade features for real time protection from potential malicious attacks”.

It’s the "best security on market," according to Gregory Wade, VP Samsung Knox. It’s also marketed as working out of the box, with integrations to widely used business MDM’s such as  AirWatch and MobileIron, among others.

To appeal to Business users, it also comes loaded with free Microsoft Skype, Onenote and OneDrive. Owners will also be given 100GB extra storage for two years.

Vidyo, a mobile video conferencing app was selected by Samsung for its ability to deliver one-touch HD multipoint video conferencing over Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G wireless networks. It  scales to leverage the phone’s enhanced resolution which has a 2560 x1440 pixel QHD display, enabling the first ever QHD resolution video conferencing on a mobile device.

With VidyoMobile, Samsung Galaxy S6 users can take full advantage of the QHD display to bring details to life for a rich in-conference experience anytime, anywhere. Vidyo leverages Samsung’s Flow, a Samsung-only technology for seamless transition of applications and data across devices.

There’s also an enhanced fingerprint scanner, a reactivation lock and advanced tokenization.