Barcelona: first Mobile World Capital


In the summer of 2011, GSMA selected Barcelona as the world’s first Mobile World Capital from 2012 to 2018. The aim of the Mobile World Capital is to radically accelerate the global growth of mobile. From now on, Barcelona is the world’s capital of mobile, successfully leading companies to take advantage of mobile technology´s limitless opportunity.

The Capital is comprised of four unique channels:

  • Mobile World Congress
  • Mobile World Hub
  • Mobile World Centre
  • Mobile World Festival Series

Find out more below.

UPDATE: In exciting news, Mobile World Capital has just announced the launch of Mobile World Lab. More info below!

Mobile World Congress


The GSMA Mobile World Congress (MWC) is globally important B2B event in the telecommunications industry presenting innovative mobile solutions and advances in mobile technology. The MWC is taking place this week, check their website to see what’s happening right now!


Mobile World Hub

The Mobile World Hub is a unique physical B2B centre that incorporates all the capabilities and infrastructures associated with the development of Mobile World Capital Solutions. It is focused on the design and management of key projects that will transform the world’s mobile economy.

The Hub will be the headquarters of the Mobile World Capital, as well as GSMA in Barcelona. There will also be space for other companies to room, and it will host the Capabilities and Solutions working teams. The MWHub will be located in the MediaTIC building, in Barcelona’s 22@ technological district. Estimated opening will be during the second quarter of 2013.

The industrial program has already been initiated with the Mobile Health Competence Center. Two workshops have already been celebrated with over 40 participants from the medical environment (including operators, institutions, medical services, privacy services and technology manufacturers), and two working lines have been launched to find solutions concerning the Personal Health Folder internationalization and portability. Soon the next events of mHealth will be announced, as well as the launch of other Competence Centers.


Mobile World Centre


The Mobile World Centre is Mobile World Capital’s permanent exhibition & venue, to spread and demonstrate the latest mobile technologies and solutions to citizens.

The Mobile World Capital Foundation & Telefonica have worked hand in hand to create this unique, open platform called Mobile World Centre; a state of the art exhibition showroom where citizens are able to understand and experience how mobile is enhancing our lives. The Centre brings mobile technology closer to all citizens.

The Centre, located in the heart of Barcelona, on Plaza Catalunya 16, is open to the public Monday through Saturday from 10:00 – 21:30. To find out more, visit their website.


Mobile World Capital Festival Series


The Mobile World Festival Series invites citizens to celebrate the mobile lifestyle through a series of creative leisure and entertainment events, including sport competitions, art exhibitions, concerts etc. It is a series of events to promote and spread mobile usage to all age citizens.

The first public collaboration is the new Phonetastic, a new international movie contest for films created or edited using mobile devices, in collaboration with the Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia. Another collaboration has been announced with Sonar Festival, to create the Sonar+D in June 2013, featuring workshops and hackathons, interactive installations, product demos and presentations, services and entrepreneurial initiatives in the field of creativity, technology and music. – See more at:


Mobile World Lab (just launched!)

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The Mobile World Lab is an international laboratory dedicated to the testing and validation of mobility solutions in test beds and live environments. The Lab brings together technological centers of excellence, universities and the City of Barcelona to create the largest and most complex mobility testing scenario, covering all areas of transport, access, terminals and applications, with a special focus on live users and environments.

The Mobile World Lab is created through a partnership and power by Mobile World Capital. To find out more, download their PDF presentation or visit the Mobile World Lab website.



Pickbe – An example of Mobile World Capital Solutions

A great example of what the Mobile World Capital is looking to promote is the mobile commerce solution developed by Pickbe.


Pickbe is a start-up based in Barcelona whose mission is to boost mobile commerce by bringing products of the user’s interests closer. They’ve kicked off by setting up virtual shops in Barcelona’s main subway stations that allow commuters to do their daily shopping. Pickbe uses digital format stores as point of sales and smartphones as the purchasing tool to acquire products, services and coupons from online leading brands. Commuters in stations with Pickbe Stores (around 100.000 passengers per day) will be able to buy all sorts of goods just downloading the Pickbe app for free and scanning the QR codes placed on the products.



Relevant websites:

Founding partners of Mobile World Capital:

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(Images via Mobile World Capital website)

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