Lessons learned at Mobile World Congress


When developing applications, the importance of mobile cannot be underestimated and, at TokBox, we recognize the need to communicate seamlessly between desktop and mobile devices. That’s why we were excited to attend Mobile World Congress last month and demonstrate the power of WebRTC in bringing contextual, embedded communications to a range of uses cases, across multiple devices.

Mobile World Congress this year surpassed a record 100,000 visitors from around the world.  With a range of exhibitors and presentations from industry leaders including Facebook’s Zuckerburg and Cesar Alierta from Telefónica, the event showcased the latest technology and trends in the mobile world, from WebRTC to virtual reality and robotics.

Alongside Telefónica, TokBox had a stand where we showcased the OpenTok platform as well as three customer solutions: Double Robotics (telepresence robot), Chegg Tutors (remote tutoring solution) and Calgary Scientific (medical imaging software). These demos highlighted the importance of embedding communications directly into the context of a website or application, especially on a mobile device – a trend that the GSMA has explored in its recent report on WebRTC.


It was clear from our conversations at the event that WebRTC is playing an increasingly important role in the mobile space across a wide range of different verticals, from financial services to media & entertainment.  Organizations are increasingly focused on offering their services to their customers wherever they are, on whatever device they are using.

We found that an increasing demand for accessibility was central to this trend.  From universities that want to build a virtual classroom that students can join from a tablet, to banks who wanted to integrate real-time video into their app to improve customer service, organizations are always looking for new ways to extend their reach and make it easier for users to access their services. WebRTC is making this possible, and companies are therefore turning to solutions like TokBox to ensure they can enable contextual communication at the click of a button, directly within a mobile app or browser.

Using WebRTC on a mobile device doesn’t just provide added flexibility, but also opens up a host of new communications possibilities. At Mobile World Congress there was a particular interest in the ‘see-what-I-see’ use case, where a user can share whatever they’re seeing via the camera on their smartphone or tablet and users can manipulate and annotate the screen. This enables field workers to collaborate with company experts at HQ when they need immediate assistance, or customers to troubleshoot with their service providers without the need for a call-out visit.

To see the TokBox demos in action, and for a tour of the whole Telefónica booth, see this video.

For the second year in the row we also co-organized the WebRTC Barcelona meet up. The event saw a great turn out and once again provided the opportunity for experts to meet up and for others to come along and get valuable exposure into the WebRTC landscape.

Sessions covered a range of different topics including real-world WebRTC deployments for businesses, the challenges of multi-party and broadcast use cases and, of course, the role of mobile SDKs.  To see a full list of topics and to get access to the presentations, visit the meetup page.

For news on our upcoming events, keep an eye on our Twitter feed and our events page.