MWC Barcelona 2022: Post-show report

MWC Barcelona 2022 went ahead!

We were very excited to attend MWC in Barcelona & return to face-to-face meetings once again. If you didn’t go you may be wondering many things…

How successful the show was? Should you have gone? Did you miss out by not going?!

We’ve prepared this short post-show report to run over the statistics, highlights and trends of MWC Barcelona 2022. There was a definite buzz in the air with this being the first tradeshow most people had attended since the Covid situation began, a little over 2 years ago. The atmosphere was light, and the show felt surprisingly busy considering they had just over half the ‘normal’ attendees.

Official Statistics

GSMA have said that there were over 61,000 attendees this year from 183 countries or territories. They have not released a detailed breakdown or analysis, but using our database we can make some educated guesses. We think around 5000 attendees came from Telcos – normally we see a figure of around 10,000 Telcom Executives.

Who attended?

We had the feeling that the majority of the delegates were from Europe this year, in particular anywhere within a 3-hour flight radius. People from further afield either did not want to, or could not travel due to restrictions. Let’s break it down a little.


Unsurprisingly there were a large number of Spanish people attending the show this year. 4YFN’s location was notably different. This hall used to be located at Fira Montjuïc, away from the main show. Now it has moved to the heart of MWC and the GSMA put the 1900 start-ups & innovations companies into Fira Grand Via. This brought a slightly different dynamic to the show.


We didn’t see too many African attendees this year. However, we know that MWC Africa is likely to attract the executives from the African continent later in the year. We will be extremely interested to attend & see how successful the first ‘live’ edition of this new show will be.


The presence from APAC was very much reduced due to travel restrictions. In particular, Huawei were noticeably reduced this year, without their usual ‘army’ of delegates. The low Asian presence was anticipated & evident.

Quality Meetings?

Yes! We can absolutely say that it was extremely worthwhile to have attended MWC Barcelona in 2022! What we noticed was that the quantity of delegates from each Telco were reduced in size, but the key players were all there: Chief Technology Officers, Chief Information Officers and so on.

As we expected with the reduced attendance, there was a definite drop in volume of meetings, but the quality was high. So our clients who we arranged meetings for were happy with the seniority of executives & the opportunities they presented.

Booths vs Meeting Rooms

A big shift for MWC Barcelona 2022 was the number of companies taking a meeting room rather than a booth. This meant that it was much harder to simply ‘drop-by’ and ad-hoc meetings were reduced.

Do we see this continuing next year? Perhaps. We’ll be interested to see if this trend continues or whether it was due in a large part from companies wishing to isolate & protect employees from the general hubbub of the main halls.

Of course, for DEVEO clients, we can pre-arrange meetings with qualified decision makers regardless of whether you have a booth, meeting room or other arrangement! If you want some help for your next tradeshow, please get in touch.

Themes of the year

GSMA gave the theme for 2022 as ‘Connectivity Unleashed’. Within this, the main topics for discussion were:

  • 5G Connect: looked at tomorrow’s world & how 5G will help shape the future.
  • Advancing AI: the transformative impact of AI in the coming years was covered.
  • CloudNet: Topics included OpenRAN, Cloud and Edge as networks continue to adapt.
  • FinTech: there have been new disruptions and innovations in recent years (digital currencies, NFTs, blockchain) and the mobile ecosystem is at the middle of this.
  • Internet of Everything: was an examination of how our homes, offices & cities are changing as more and more devices get connected.
  • Tech Horizon: looked at how mobile technology is integrated into our lives through high growth verticals such as healthcare, automotive and drones.

So nothing particularly surprising there – the latest technologies were showcased with use cases for the future. How these technologies will impact people, communities and future business was thoroughly explored.


However, we really felt that the key buzzword was the Metaverse! The Metaverse is currently under construction and promises to link 3D virtual spaces to the real world. We enjoyed seeing the latest AR and VR technologies being showcased at MWC Barcelona 2022.

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