Qualcomm’s Uplinq 2012 event — get 20% off now

I’ve been to the last two Uplinq 2012 events and without a doubt they’ve been a key highlight of my mobile year.

Qualcomm is one of those companies that’s positioned itself right slap-bang in the centre of the mobile ecosystem. Their technology is directly utilised, referenced, licensed or integrated into almost everything you’d care to name in mobile.

As a result, their user conference has morphed to attract an unparalleled and fantastic mix of operators, handset manufacturers, developers and key stake holders. Last year’s keynote highlighted just how far Qualcomm had come, hosting keynotes from everyone from Nokia’s Stephen Elop, HTC’s Peter Chou to Palm’s Jon Rubenstein (the latter who criticised the hell out of Nokia’s recent Windows Phone announcement only to see Palm disintegrate a few months later).

Qualcomm is most certainly Android. The company is also heavily involved in Windows Phone and their lTE chips are used by Apple (little known fact: Almost 6% of Qualcomm’s revenues came from Apple this year — source).

It’s worth noting that when I say “Android”, I really mean Samsung and HTC. Both companies account for 26% of Qualcomm’s revenues (13% each! — source).

Don’t forget that RIM are also a customer.

Which means the company is playing a critical role in today’s mobile ecosystem.

That’s why I’m such a fan of Uplinq.

It’s a brilliant opportunity to network between such a varied and high calibre group of people. It’s no mistake that Nokia’s Elop chose Uplinq 2011 as one of his first public engagements discussing his company’s strategy. (He won over quite a few people that day — here’s the video.)

If you’re trying to meet device manufacturers and operators, the event’s Market Match feature is for you. Uplinq’s organisers will arrange 10 minute “speed date” business development meetings for you. That’s well worth a look.

However in my opinion, Uplinq is best used as an opportunity to take the temperature of North America’s influential wireless community. The innovation showcase is a great way to formally meet a lot of smart companies and there are plenty of planned networking opportunities. Plus the company’s legendary closing party in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter is brilliant: The company takes over a whole section, closes it off and makes every shop/restaurant ‘free’! Two years ago I found myself sampling wine with Qualcomm’s top man, Paul Jacobs (to be clear, he walked into the place when I was already there… I didn’t bother him with questions). But that gives you an example of the level of the folk you can meet. Who knows, perhaps I should have grabbed Paul and pitched him my FamilyShare idea in 20 seconds and we could now be billionaires together?

Anyway. I write this post as a reminder that Uplinq is coming — June 27 & 28. You can get 20% off the ticket price until the 18th of May. And now is a good time to be looking at flights and hotels before things get too crazy.

I had a look at travel costs from the UK. Right now Expedia will get you to Uplinq arriving on the 26th and departing on the 28th for £1,400. That’s staying at the rather nice Hyatt Regency Mission Bay. There’s quite a few on the list for nearer £1,100. This is including a return US Airways flight. The Uplinq ticket is $375 (but I think there’s 20% off that, at the moment, as I said) so I reckon you could do the whole thing for just under £2k.

There’s more information at www.uplinq.com.

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