GLOMOs 2024 Preview: Best Mobile Innovation in Emerging Markets

GLOMOs 2024 Preview: Best Mobile Innovation in Emerging Markets

Developing Telecoms’ Founder and CEO, Alec Barton has, once again, been judging for the Best Mobile Innovation in Emerging Markets category of the 2024 GLOMOs.

The annual GLOMO awards, organised by the GSMA, are among the most prestigious annual awards for the telecom industry with the winners announced each year at Mobile World Congress Barcelona. The category for Best Mobile Innovation in Emerging Markets is always highly competitive, with over 20 entries from around the world submitted in 2024.

Entries span a very broad range of innovation, but can be mostly categorized into three areas: network developments, innovative end user applications and devices, and network services developments. Topics with high need and take-up in emerging markets such as mobile financial services (MFS) and network access solutions for remote and underserved groups and communities always attract a high number of entries. In recent years, an increasing number of entries have included sustainability and energy efficiency as an important element of their pitch.

In addition to outlining the key challenge an entry is seeking to address and how it attempts to meet this, entrants are required to address several questions designed to show how truly innovative and unique their entry is in comparison with other solutions that may be available. Entries must be in active deployment in an emerging market, and judges may award marks for the results that have already been achieved and what the potential is for the future, as well as how scalable and sustainable the solution is long term.

The 2024 shortlist was announced earlier this month:

  • bKash for Bangladesh’s Human ATM, building emerging markets’ financial inclusion
  • China Unicom Inner Mongolia and Huawei for simplified rural networks for the benefit of all
  • Huawei and Ufone for Microwave SuperHub Solution, a spectrum congestion remover for operators
  • Nokia for Rural Connect, an E2E modular, energy efficient and re-deployable solution for connectivity in rural & emerging markets
  • PT Telkomsel and ZTE Corporation for MobileMarine, catalyzing the fishing economy in emerging markets

As a judge it can sometimes be difficult to compare the many different entries, as for example when some entries relate only to a single country while others have been deployed in many. But with a panel of judges looking at all the entries, each one is assured of a fair and balanced appraisal. From the point of view of the judges, the GLOMO awards provide an insight in the latest trends and developments in the respective category.

“It is a huge honour to be invited to judge this category in the GLOMOs. I believe the award acts as a real incentive to innovation in relation to technology for emerging markets”, said Alec Barton. “It is fascinating to dive into each entry and unpick how the solutions address the needs of emerging markets and will benefit operators and their customers in the future.”

The winner of the Best Mobile Innovation in Emerging Markets category GLOMO award, along with the other GLOMO awards, will be announced on Wednesday 28th February at 17:30 CET.

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