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Within three years, most users will turn to their tablet or smartphone for online activities

New predictions from Gartner show how we’re moving to 'mobile first'

New predictions from technology research company Gartner have shown how we’re increasingly relying on mobile technology.

It’s forecasting that by 2018, more than 50% of users worldwide will go to a tablet or smartphone first for all their online activities.

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By 2020 there'll be four internet-connected devices for every person in the world

By 2020 there'll be four internet-connected devices for every person in the world

A new report from Strategy Analytics shows that almost 12 billion internet-connected devices will be in use around the world by the end of this year; the equivalent of 1.7 devices for every person.

However, growth in machine-to-machine connections for the ‘Internet of Things’ is expected to result in this ratio increasing dramatically in the next six years.

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96% of mobile phones worldwide are expected to have Bluetooth connectivity by 2018

Figures released at the Bluetooth World 2014 conference show that 96% of all mobile phones - not just smartphones - are expected to include Bluetooth wireless technology by 2018.

That compares with 90% in 2013.

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Mobile phones and eBook readers are more 'personal' than tablets and PCs

Figures from the GlobalWebIndex market research study into digital consumers have provided a fascinating snapshot of mobile device usage.

Globally, Android was the most-used mobile operating system, climbing from 27% market share in 2011 to 65% by the end of 2013.

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Thailand leads the move to smartphones and tablets for internet access

New figures from media agency Mindshare Worldwide show that Thailand has the world’s highest proportion of internet users who aren’t relying on desktop computers.

Just 54% of people in Thailand used a desktop or laptop computer as their main internet device, with 32% using smartphones and 11% on tablets.

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Opinion Articles

‘The Eyes Have It’ at Mobile World Congress

James Rosewell writes:

DoCoMo are one of many network operators and handset manufacturers demonstrating innovative new products as Mobile World Congress. Our eye was caught by the employee demonstrating “Eye Controlled Earphones”. It’s a good job the ladies from the CBOSS stand weren’t walking past at the time.

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'Mobile Money Monday' at Mobile World Congress

James Rosewell writes:

Monday’s Mobile World Congress conference agenda dedicated one of 4 streams to Mobile Money - Transfers, Transactions and Technology allowing all stakeholders to share experiences and debate the future of Mobile and Money.

Two types of service dominated presentations and panel discussions; Near Field Communication (NFC) technology enabling payment at traditional Point of Sale (PoS), and the Mobile Wallet replacing plastic or cash.

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‘Innovation Corner’ at Mobile World Congress

James Rosewell writes:

Here’s my pick of the 3 most innovative companies I’ve uncovered at the 2010 Mobile World Congress.

Cootek.com win the prize for simplest innovation... an accurate touch screen keyboard. They’re a few months away from being ready to release the software to handset manufacturers, but the demo handsets worked very well. The keyboard assumes the user is not going to press the intended key, but in fact might miss and press another key in the same area. Based on this knowledge and an extensive dictionary of words and language context, it’s able to determine the intended word with surprising accuracy. I sincerely hope their technology will be made available for the Nexus One in the not too distant future.

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Google “Mobile First” from Eric Schmidt’s Key Note at Mobile World Congress

James Rosewell writes:

Google CEO, Eric Schmidt, presented a compelling vision of a mobile centric future. The phone has become the “high value end point” for Google services enabled by a combination of increasing handset power, mobile data networks and cloud computing. By far the scarcest resource is the bandwidth available through the mobile data networks. Google appear committed to work with Mobile Network Operators (MNO) to maximise bandwidth usage, although several audience questions suggested scepticism from the main stream mobile industry. Eric expressed a need to maintain a harmonious relationship with MNOs stating Google could not operate its service on mobile devices without their co-operation.

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The great Windows Mobile 7 conspiracy theory

Mark Bridge writes:

I like a good conspiracy theory. A good one, mind you. None of this “Funny thing happened on the way to Mars” nonsense. Oh no, not me. And, despite occasionally mirroring Jerry Fletcher by balancing a bottle on the door handle, I’ve never been inclined to publish such a theory. Until now.

You see, it’s Mobile World Congress in a fortnight’s time. Which is when the great and the good of the mobile industry – along with their mates and hangers-on – head for Barcelona. Microsoft will be there. They’re holding a press briefing on Monday afternoon. And there’s a lot of talk about Windows Mobile 7 being (unofficially) on the agenda. But where’s the evidence?

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Recent Podcasts

Reviewing our 2015 mobile industry predictions... and looking forward to 2016

Podcast - 15th January 2016

Iain Graham, James Rosewell and Mark Bridge return to review their mobile industry predictions from last year. Which mergers, partnerships and developments did they forecast correctly... and which didn’t work out as planned?

Later in the programme, the team anticipates some of the topics that will be hitting the headlines during 2016.

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Podcast from Mobile World Congress 2015

Podcast - 6th March 2015

Mark Bridge learns about the mobile technology trends at Mobile World Congress 2015 by chatting to James Rosewell of 51Degrees, Dr Kevin Curran from the IEEE and Chris Millington of Doro.

They talk about wearable devices, wireless charging, mobile operating systems and much more... including some of their favourite products from the exhibition.

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Looking back at February: from security scares to multiple MVNOs

Podcast - 27th February 2015

We're taking a look back at the biggest mobile industry news stories from February 2015, including allegations that the UK's security service tried to breach SIM card security by hacking into one of the world's biggest SIM producers.

We also talk about the planned BT and EE merger, the creation of two new UK virtual networks, some acquisitions in the mobile payment arena and a new Ubuntu smartphone.

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Interview with Chris Millington of Doro about mobile retailing, wearables and technology for older consumers

Podcast - 24th February 2015

In today's programme Mark Bridge talks to Chris Millington, who's Managing Director for Doro UK and Ireland.

They discuss the state of mobile retailing in the UK, the future of wearable devices and - as you might expect - smartphones for seniors.

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A month of mobile: O2 counts on 3, Microsoft counts to 10 and Apple counts its profits

Podcast - 30th January 2015

We're back with a month of mobile industry news, including takeover talks and takeover rumours. O2 and Three are said to be discussing a merger... but is there any truth in the suggestions that BlackBerry could be up for grabs?

We also discuss Apple's record-breaking quarterly figures, the highlights of CES and the launch of Microsoft Windows 10, as well as saying farewell to the current version of Google Glass.

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