Mobile World Congress is the biggest mobile event of the year, seeing the launch of many of the year’s top smartphones, smartwatches and tablets, as well as seeing the emergence of the hottest new trends in mobile, such as 5G.
Generally speaking, all the big brands attend Mobile World Congress (MWC) in one way or another. The exception is Apple, although the trends outlined at MWC very much include the iPhone.
Here’s what to expect from Mobile World Congress 2019 and all the launches it will bring.
What is Mobile World Congress?
Mobile World Congress is an annual trade show run by the GSMA. The location theoretically moves around Europe, but for many years it has been held in Barcelona, Spain.
It is the launch platform for many of the year’s big smartphones, but it has also given us a range of tablets, smartwatches and other connected devices in recent years.
Outside of the consumer sphere, it also draws in many of the industry heavyweights to talk about the future of mobile, like 5G, mobile hardware, VR and other associated technologies.
When is Mobile World Congress 2019?
Mobile World Congress is scheduled to run from 25-28 February 2019. Those are days that the show is open, the keynotes are running and the exhibition halls are open.
However, the big announcements are likely to be on 24 February. This is often the day that a number of press conferences are held, just before the show actually opens.
What will launch at Mobile World Congress 2019?
Asus at MWC 2019
Asus has been pretty enthusiastic about Zenfone launches recently and the Zenfone 5 was pretty good. Getting onto the World’s smartphone stage to launch the next version of its mobile device makes perfect sense.
BlackBerry at MWC 2019
BlackBerry often uses MWC to make some sort of announcement. At the moment there’s very little being said about BlackBerry’s future plans, so we can’t be certain what might be announced at MWC.
Honor at MWC 2019
Honor often has its place at MWC, sharing some of the spotlight with parent company Huawei. We know that Honor will be “officially” unveiling the View 20 in Paris in January, but we suspect it will step aside from MWC to give way for Huawei to launch its latest devices.
Huawei had a storming 2018 and to keep momentum up, we expect to see Huawei launch the P30 in Barcelona. Huawei has booked in a press conference for 24 February and many expect the Huawei P30 to be unveiled. There’s little in the way of rumours so far, but we’d expect to see a lot of the Mate 20 tech rolling over into the new P model.
LG has been a little variable with launches in recent years, famously delaying the G7 launch, but offering the V35 ThinQ at MWC 2018 instead. Whether this strategy will continue, or if LG will return to launching its flagship in Barcelona remains to be seen. Rumours suggest that LG now wants to be back in the mix and will announce the flagship G8 at MWC.
Motorola Moto G7 and a new RAZR?
Lenovo is likely to keep the Moto momentum up with the launch of the Moto G7 at MWC. The company has been easing up the quality of the handset, but now finds it priced high against the likes of Honor with rival affordable handsets. There’s also talk of a new RAZR, priced at $1500 on Verizon, but details are light on this retro rumour.
Nokia at MWC 2019
Nokia has announced a large number of phones as it attempts to fight its way back into the limelight. From retro re-releases to a full range of affordable Android One devices, Nokia has been pretty exciting over the past 24 months. There’s little clue as to what we might see at MWC – apart from maybe the elusive Nokia 9. Nokia hasn’t officially announced an event, but it has started teasing the future on social media.
Oppo folding open at MWC
Oppo, like other Chinese brands, has been making a lot of noise. For MWC 2019 it’s likely that we’ll see a folding phone from Oppo. The company has confirmed that it is working on a folding phone and that it might reveal more in Barcelona. Oppo is also launching into the UK on 29 January and there’s a suggestion that its 10x zoom module will be shown off.
Samsung Galaxy F and Galaxy Sport
Samsung has confirmed that the Galaxy S10 will be announced on 20 February, so we’ll have the Galaxy S10 models just before Mobile World Congress. However, Samsung might use MWC to show off the Galaxy F/X – its folding phone – and there’s rumour of the Galaxy Sport, as new smartwatch. Unfortunately, rumours currently say there will be no Samsung press conference at MWC.
Sony Xperia XZ4
Sony launches lots of phones and MWC is likely to see the launch of the Xperia XZ4. The company launched the Xperia XZ2 in 2018, but then launched the XZ3 in August. Early rumours are already suggesting that we’ll see a new Xperia device launched in Barcelona with three cameras on the back and a 21:9 aspect display. You can expect an announcement on 25 February, with a press conference scheduled for 8:30am CET.
Xiaomi at MWC 2019
Xiaomi isn’t new to MWC, but it has been increasingly raising its profile outside of the homeland China – and 2019 is set to be the biggest year year. Exactly what we might see announced at MWC we can’t yet say, but it could be a the Mi Mix 3 5G. Xiaomi has confirmed that it’s hosting a press event on 24 February.
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