CTIA—The Wireless Association, the wireless industry’s international organization, kicks off its “Super Mobility Week” Tuesday in Las Vegas.
Between Apple’s big product unveiling that same day, carrier pricing battles, and potential M&A in the works, the stakes are high for an industry in the midst of many big changes. Here’s what to expect from the big annual show.
Apple chatter and pricing battles
Despite the fact that Apple has no official presence at the conference, it could very well steal the spotlight. The conference’s first day coincides with Apple’s Cupertino event, where the smartphone maker is widely expected to unveil the next generation iPhone and its first watch.
Another big mobile event is coinciding with CTIA, T-Mobile’s “Uncarrier 7.0” event on Wednesday in San Francisco. This comes as T-Mobile’s pricing war against Verizon, AT&T and Sprint heats up.
Read More What to expect from Apple’s big event
While companies increasingly seem to shun big conference for their own product announcements, CTIA is fighting back by combining the two shows it used to host every year into one big event—its first “Super Mobility Week.” It may be light on announcements, but wireless is so integral to such a wide range of industries that many companies have a presence.
Twitter on the future of mobile
On Tuesday, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo sits down with CNBC’s Julia Boorstin for a fireside chat at 7:15pm EST. Twitter prides itself on being “mobile-first” and, like rival Facebook, is building its business around mobile advertising. With ongoing questions about whether Twitter will be able to grow its user base to the kind of scale Facebook has, expect a focus on Costolo’s plan to make the service more user-friendly. And on the heels of Twitter’s first e-commerce test, announced Monday morning, expect questions about the “Buy Now” button, and other plans to boost revenue. And of course, there will be questions about how Apple’s announcements will impact Twitter’s advertising—and user—experience.
Read More Twitter’s big ‘buy now’ commerce move
Verizon on mobile video innovation
Verizon Wireless President and CEO and CTIA Chairman Dan Mead kicks off the conference on Tuesday 12p.m. EST with a keynote focused on mobile video. It’s an area where the company has large ambitions, particularly its LTE Multicast technology which is designed to deliver high quality video without buffering.
FCC talks mobile policy, competition and M&A
Following Mead, Federal Communications Chairman Tom Wheeler’s keynote address will focus on mobile policy. The wireless industry is watching closely for updates on the FCC’s take on wireless competition and mergers and acquisitions. On the heels of T-Moblie and Sprint ending talks last month in light of regulatory scrutiny Dish is reportedly expressing interest in buying T-Mobile from parent Deutsche Telekom.
Rounding out Tuesday’s big name speakers, Stephen Elop, executive VP of Microsoft Devices Group, will take the stage to talk about mobile innovation, and the company’s shift to a cloud-first, mobile-first strategy.
AT&T wants to connect Your world
On Wednesday at 12pm EST, AT&T’s Ralph de la Vega, recently promoted to oversee mobile and enterprise, will deliver a keynote and panel on the future of the connected car. AT&T’s big focus at the conference is the “Connected Life,” from cars to homes to wearables. AT&T is also hosting a hackathon to give developers tools to build new apps for the car and home.
SAP on mobile business strategy
Also Wednesday morning, SAP CEO Bill McDermott will address the importance of mobility to businesses. SAP’s CTIA booth is focused on tools to help enterprise customers leverage mobile, with experts on hand to demo the products and talk about about SAP’s vision for the future of work, customer engagement, and the networked economy.
Other big name speakers on Wednesday include Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkoph, who will take part in a fireside chat on the future of mobile with Re/code’s Ina Fried.