MWC has 1,500 exhibitors, but TelcoDR's Cloud City goes virtual

At last year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, TelcoDR made a splash with its inaugural Cloud City exhibit. And it also helped the MWC event during a difficult year in the middle of the Covid pandemic.

But this year, TelcoDR plans to operate its Cloud City virtually.

During MWC 2022, which runs from February 22 through March 2, TelcoDR will bring together cloud companies that are building products for the telecom industry for a free virtual event.

Danielle Royston, CEO of TelcoDR, calls herself a “cloud evangelist,” who wants to help telecom operators more easily access and use cloud applications in their networks.

Her Cloud City was a big saving grace for the MWC 2021 event, giving it some pizazz when many traditional vendors, such as Ericsson and Nokia, had pulled out. Royston purchased the entire 65,000 square feet of floorspace that Ericsson had vacated in Hall 2. And she even rented a yacht for a big party during one evening of the show.

But this year’s Cloud City is scaled down to an all-virtual event with about 30 cloud-native software vendors. TelcoDR’s announcement says participants can “test drive telco software that utilizes services from public cloud providers Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform.”

However, it doesn’t look like any of the major cloud vendors will be officially sponsoring the Cloud City.

But the big cloud providers have booked exhibitor space at the physical event in Barcelona, which is a sign that they’re taking their telecom business more seriously of late.

Most notably, AWS has booked 6 stands. Google has booked 4 stands, and Microsoft has booked 1 stand.

RELATED: New AWS CEO says AWS is talking to ‘virtually every telecom operator’

There are also a lot of other familiar names booked as exhibitors including AT&T Business, BT Group, CableLabs, Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson, Federated Wireless, Huawei (with 6 stands), KT, Nokia, Rakuten Symphony, Samsung (with 7 stands), the Telecom Infra Project, Verizon and Vodafone.

MWC 2022

There seems to be a lot of equivocating this year among people who would normally attend MWC in Barcelona. Perhaps hundreds of people will book a last-minute plane ticket and attend the event, which is operated by GSMA.

GSMA Director General Mats Granryd recently told its associated publication Mobile World Live that the event is “not going to be pre-pandemic, but it's going to be not far from…. All the indicators are showing that this is going to be a great show."

Granryd said there are about 1,500 exhibitors signed up for the show. 

Cloud City

For the Cloud City virtual event the list of partners includes companies such as Celona, a private wireless provider, and Allot, which does network security. In addition three companies that Royston is personally involved with will have a prominent place at Cloud City. Those companies are TelcoDR, Totogi and Skyvera.

In 2021 Royston invested in Totogi, a company that does cloud-based charging for telcos. “Charging” is something that happens in real time as opposed to “billing,” which happens on a 30-day cycle.

RELATED: Danielle Royston invests $100M in Totogi, a telco charging startup

And TelcoDR also established a $1 billion telco transformation fund to acquire companies and software products in order to speed the cloudification of the telco market. Acquired assets will be overseen and operated by Skyvera, a subsidiary of TelcoDR.