There is a lot that the telecoms sector can do to drive the deployment and uptake of Internet services in developing countries, but high on the agenda for CEOs representing a broad cross section of the industry on Tuesday was the need to ensure content is tailored specifically for end users in these markets.
"Local content is going to be key [to driving uptake]," said Nasser Marafih, CEO of Qtel, which late Monday re-branded to Ooredoo.
"We need to give people a reason to upgrade to a new device or new service," he said during Tuesday's opening keynote presentation at Mobile World Congress.
According to session moderator Guy Zibi, head of consulting at Pyramid Research, 90% of the next 2 billion people that will come online over the next few years will live in emerging markets.
Handset maker Nokia is already working hard to make local content available to these new users. One of the services included with its low-cost devices is Nokia Life: an SMS-based service that delivers local news, weather and information.
There are also 300 emerging market software developers making applications for Nokia's Series 40 devices that are in what CEO Stephen Elop referred to as "Nokia's millionaire's club", that is, developers boasting apps that have been downloaded more than 1 million times.
"A subset of that group have passed 200 million downloads each," Elop said.
For Mozilla CEO Gary Kovacs, whose Firefox OS has been the talk of the show so far here in Barcelona, the true path to tailoring the experience for emerging market consumers starts with removing obstacles to deploying local content, apps and app stores on mobile devices.
In a swipe at Google and Apple, Kovacs said that when it comes to the next 2 billion new Internet users, "the services they will come to expect are impossible to be conceived of by two companies sitting in the heart of Silicon Valley".
It is worth remembering, however, that while Google and Apple do have ultimate control over the apps that make it into their app stores, developers from all over the world are able to write software for