Mobile World Congress: The Electric Kool-Aid App Test

The kiss of death to any device is a dearth of apps. And quite how this is considered depends on who is marketing the issue, and when. For the longest time, OEMs have talked quantity over quality, as though having the most variations of a calculator app may actually make a difference to a consumer.

But what does make a difference is having the right mix of apps and the correct name-brand options. Windows Phone still suffers from some embarrassing omissions, such as a United Airlines app, or an official Starbucks app. The current hottest game, Temple Run II, is also conspicuous in its absence. One can argue that all these things will be addressed in time, but there are some missing apps that are just too blatant a miss to overlook.

Mobile World Congress (MWC), the annual mobile show of all shows, will be taking place in Barcelona later this month. Apps will abound and everyone will be keen to show off the latest and greatest ones for their operating systems. But there’s just one problem… while MWC offers a guide to “MyMWC” for Android and iOS users, there is no such app (so far) available for BlackBerry 10 or Windows Phone 8. Whoops.

But it is far more than “whoops.” If one cannot get the right app built for this show, then you clearly have a problem. Is the problem a lack of vision at the OEM(s) or with Mobile World Congress itself? Somewhere (no, I’m not going to point any specific fingers) there is a disconnect, and a very painful one at that.

Hopefully before the show doors open, the issue will be resolved and all mobile-toting visitors will have full access to NFC capabilities, as well as a who, what, and when guide to the show. After all, with Microsoft putting so much emphasis on the show, and Nokia’s Elop keynoting, anything other than a market-leading app would be a cause for a snigger or two from the Windows naysayers.