Our 3 Key Takeaways From Mobile World Congress 2018

The Mobile World Congress is a premier mobile event. It is poised to keep getting bigger every year as mobile starts to morph into digital. Sometimes hailed the Mobile Walking Congress also includes a Crowd Manager to help guide thousands of delegates from around the world through the exhibitions enormous labyrinth. But above that, at Mobile World Congress there is always a rise in innovative developments that give way to a new revolution. One that fundamentally changes the way we live, work and communicate.

To refresh your memory, we’ve summarized our own observations in three key takeaways:

1. eSIM

Mobile has transformed the telecommunications market (business and retail). Now it is helping to scale the rise of adjacent technologies like the internet of Things (IoT), soon to influence nearly every type of industry. According to Gartner, there will be more than 20 billion connected things by 2020 and the number of companies offering 4G enabled devices such as smart watches, routers and modems, connected cars and drones at MWC18, proves that we are well underway. On top of that, there is an exponential amount of new 5G equipment on the market including equipment around LTE-M and NB-IoT. In fact, iBASIS tested mobile connectivity with our global eSIM in a partner’s LTE-M module at the show.

Connected devices, especially when they travel internationally across borders, are going to require the infrastructure and enabled networks to operate seamlessly. At the heart of that is the new eSIM (otherwise known as embedded SIM) that will essentially eliminate the need to have a physical SIM card (and SIM slot) and the information on it will be compliant and rewritable by all operators. This means a device can change operator with a simple data exchange. A new SIM will not be required, nor should there be any time delay in switching the eSIM to its new purpose. Without the need to include traditional SIM cards in new devices, technology vendors will be able to create devices that are more interconnected than ever, at the smallest size ever seen. For all that technology to work correctly, it’s going to need to stay connected – and eSIM is going to make that connection simple and reliable.

2. Security

The number of connected devices around the world will offer huge opportunities for companies. Connected devices combined with big data will benefit millions of people around the world, however, the IoT opportunity also has its dangers. With the rise of IoT devices, there is also a rise in vulnerabilities for these devices. Recent hacks have proven this point and the acute need for a more complete security initiative. While some risk is inevitable, the industry must ensure that the balance between risk and reward is right to ensure businesses and consumers adopt the new technology and services enabled by IoT.

The GSMA together with the mobile industry has delivered a set of IoT Security Guidelines, backed by an IoT Security Assessment scheme, to provide a proven and robust approach to end-to-end security.

3. 5G

Although 5G may not at first seem much different than 4G LTE, and eSIM solutions may not seem that much an improvement over the already-miniature SIM card, these technologies are on the forefront of the digital age of tomorrow – and business leaders need to be prepared for the opportunities they’ll bring.

As we move into the world of 5G, a new opportunity of data speeds will be available to consumers and businesses, not to mention the amount of data that will be generated by those. 20 billion-plus devices. Telecom providers are prepared, which is why 5G is going to be such a big deal. Some tech leaders believe 5G will be the next technological revolution – and if the estimated download speeds are on point, which could be up to 10 times the download speed of current 4G, it will be a dramatic change in how users and industries handle their data. To put it in perspective, current 4G speeds can download about one gigabit per second – and that’s only if the user is experiencing optimal performance. With 5G, users will be able to download 10 gigabits per second and have improved connectivity and latency.

That speed means Ultra HD videos can be accessed almost instantaneously, photos can be shared in a heartbeat, and files that were previously too big to easily distribute can become effortlessly and reliably shared between peers. More people across the globe will be downloading even more data, faster, with higher reliability. This will strengthen the opportunity for new devices to enter the Internet of Things and become mainstays of businesses and households across the globe.


No one can foresee what technology 5G and eSIM will produce. In any case, iBASIS can help you with keeping them connected worldwide with guaranteed End-2-End security, rooted in GSMA standards. iBASIS Global Access for Things is a global mobile connectivity solution for things worldwide. With our global network capabilities and more than 20 years of experience in the field of empowering connections, we are your global operator of access for the connection of things. Regardless of what new devices 5G and eSIM bring into your organization, iBASIS is prepared to offer the connectivity solutions your business needs to thrive in the age of the Internet of Things.

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