Hot gadgets aside, some of biggest stories to emerge out of Mobile World Congress 2013 have focused squarely on powerful new relationships across the mobile landscape. Since Monday, scores of announcements have been made regarding freshly-forged partnerships that will drive mobile payments, mobile advertising, and mobile commerce to new heights this year and for as far as the eye can see.
Foursquare’s integration with MasterCard and Visa to offer special discounts for card holders when checked in to specific locations has been one of the hottest announcements of the week. “This is going to be a pretty core part of our revenue model going forward,” explained Noah Weiss, product manager at Foursquare.
MasterCard, meanwhile, announced three new partnerships – with VimpelCom, Ezetap and Equity Bank – all for the purpose of expanding the company’s footprint in the European and African markets. Through these partnerships, asserts MasterCard executive Hany Fam, “MasterCard is addressing mobile payments that will replace cash in the day-to-day life of millions of people and drive financial inclusion across the globe.”
Apart from mobile payments and mCommerce, some of the top headlines were claimed by mobile advertising. With an unprecedented number of mobile app developers (chiefly of the Android persuasion) in attendance at MWC, the partnership announced by Airpush – the second largest Android mobile ad network – was a definite highlight from Barcelona.
On Monday, Airpush – winner of the “Best Mobile Ad Network” at the 2012 MEAs – confirmed a new working relationship with Apsalar, a provider of mobile engagement management solutions for app developers and marketers.
In a nutshell, Airpush and Apsalar have entered into a joint agreement to provide in-app analytics to developers in Airpush’s extensive ad network. As a result of the agreement, Airpush and Apsalar have created the most advanced group of tools available for Android app developers in one place.
The ad network says Apsalar’s in-app analytics will enable developers to understand user behavior and measure retention, engagement, and monetization
“We’re excited to partner with Apsalar to offer cutting edge app analytics to our Android developers,” says Asher Delug, CEO of Airpush. ”With this partnership, Airpush becomes the first company to offer monetization, bug tracking, and in app analytics in a single Android SDK and associated web dashboard. Apsalar offers developers and marketers the insights they need to power their apps for free and these capabilities will help developers create even more capable, more powerful apps.”
With another memorable MWC now behind us, what were the defining announcements or partnerships from your vantage point?