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3GSM 2006 – weekend in Barcelona, before the congress
Scheduled every year, 3GSM congress can be literally named one of the major events in the field of telecommunication. Due to being focused on the mobile technologies, it becomes more important than CeBIT. The comparison to CeBIT isn't a coincidence – the two mentioned exhibitions play the most important roles in this industry, both of them take place one month apart in the begging of every year. Every January attention of the entire professional audience is drawn to announces and news brought from the exhibition (exhibition, congress, round tables, press-conferences, mini MBA courses – everything is scheduled for the same time). This event is of interest not only for the professionals, but for those who try to follow all innovations as well, and I assure you, there will be more than enough of these people attending the fair. February is a very good time for summing up the previous year and make predictions for the upcoming one.
I would like to make this note beforehand – this article should be considered as a lyrical digression, an attempt to foretell what the exhibition is going to feature before it starts. Those, who wanted to read about the latest novelties and check out exclusive images here, should wait until our next reports, since the whole week is going to be very busy.
For a long time the congress huddled in Cannes , which it had outgrown by then. Expensive azure coast, overcrowded hotels, problems with transport. And moreover, the exhibition hall couldn't hold countless booths and exhibition stands, that's why those who didn't manage to grab a place under the hall's roof were forced to build tents and rent yachts. Though even these half measures were not of much use, thus the organizers took the only right decision and moved 3GSM from Cannes to Barcelona . From all quarters Barcelona is fits to holding the congress more: February is warmer here, accommodations cost less, there are more, transport system is excellent, and the last but not the least, it is one of the most attractive places for tourism – the giant exhibition hall is located in one of the most beautiful places of Barcelona . On the whole – only pros, the only con that one can find is that the venue is placed rather far from the coastal zone (around 2km)
Right after getting out from the subway station Espanya, we face the entrance of a large exhibition hall Fira de Barcelona, which will become the home for the entire mobile industry, and leave the transport ring of Placa d'Espanya behind.
The exhibition hall is located at the foot of Montjuic, the mountain that gave the name to one of Barcelona 's districts. The two coloumns at the entrance concentrate your sight on the National Palace. Once you climb your way to the palace, you will see the Barcelona itself right in your palm. You can see not only the exhibition hall, but also the unfinished Sagara Familia, the symbol of Barcelona, and all main buildings that stand out in front of small houses that fill the city.
The expansion of exhibition hall did not really prevent the organizers from building temporary tents. At the photo you can see how the organizers are desperate to finish the work in time, this picture was taken 1 day before the grand opening. Judging by our previous experiences, they might be working even 1 hour before the press-conference's start.
What should we expect from 3GSM this year? In case with the year 2005 we met a new abbreviation HSDPA, which means even higher data transfer speed in 3G networks. This year we will have to learn new a word HSUPA (the difference is in increase of speed, but this time it concerns both outgoing and incoming traffic). A new stage of 3G network evolution, it's not a revolution though, everything is moving steadily. As a matter of fact, we did not see wide commercial use of HSDPA yet. Music segment and slim phones will dominate this year's exhibition. We will see even more products, since the amount of participants had increased by 40%. The organizers did their best in order to hold 3GSM Congress at the highest level, and in our turn will do our best in order to make a perfect report with maximum possible coverage. The articles will be published through the whole week.
P.S.: In order to feel the atmosphere that surrounds the congress we are publishing several photos of external mobile phone advertisement and the congress itself. As usual, Samsung dominates in the number and the size of posters, it's hard to NOT notice them.
Published 13 February 2006
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