One of biggest annual events in the smartphone world is the Mobile World Congress, or MWC for short. But what happens there and why is it such a big deal?
What is MWC?
Mobile World Congress is an annual event held in Europe, but since 2006 its home has been Barcelona. It’s one of the world’s largest technology conferences, at which manufactures show off and announce all their new gadgets and smartphones.
When is MWC 2017?
MWC generally happens at the same time every year – late February or early March. This year it’s running 27 Feb – 2 March, but all the big announcements will take place on press day – 26 Feb. We’ll be there to bring you all the latest news.
What will we see at MWC?
That’s the million-dollar question. Manufacturers have started sending out press invites, so we do know who’ll be there, but exactly what will be unveiled is yet to be determined. This is what we know so far…
BlackBerry will be at Mobile World Congress on 25 February - a day before everyone else. A 'save the date' invite gives us a fresh look at the teased smartphone code-named ‘Mercury’, which we saw briefly at Vegas’ CES in January.
Read more here and watch the BlackBerry Mercury teaser video.
Following an official event invite from LG, we know there will be an LG G6 flagship smartphone coming. The only thing the company is giving away, other than the name, is the tag line “Big screen that fits”. So we should be looking at a few physical differences compared to last year’s G5.
Huawei has recently released a video on YouTube confiming the name of its new flagship smartphone, the P10. Last year we saw the launch of a tablet at MWC, with the Huawei P9 coming a month later at its own launch event, but it looks like the times are changing this time round.
The short clip features the same #OO hashtag that was used last year for the P9 launch. The double O represented the dual camera setup on the rear of the phone, so it seems to suggest we could expect a similar dynamic.
Sony’s press invitation indicates that there’ll be an announcement on Monday morning - a day after everyone else. Sony has traditionally always held this spot at MWC for announcement, and we’re expecting something big to be unveiled around 08:30 CET.
Motorola has sent out a ‘save the date’ invite, pointing towards 26 Feb. It doesn’t give anything away, showing only a non-descript phone with a shadow of The Sagrada Familia - Guadí’s iconic Barcelona landmark.
So, keep your eyes peeled on Saturday around 16:30 CET.
HTC has recently announced the first two smartphones in its new U range, but neither the U Play nor the U Ultra are flagship smartphones. MWC would be the perfect place for HTC to lift the curtain on its follow-up to the HTC 10, but at present there hasn’t been a press conference organised.
Nokia, now under the control of HMD Global, is hosting an event on Sunday too, where we’re hoping to see the announcement of a number of new phones. Details are pretty thin on the ground at the moment, but following the announcement of a China-only Nokia 6 smartphone as CES, it would be awesome see something for Western markets, too.
Recent news has suggested that Nokia will be revealing a modern day version of the much-loved 3310, which was originally released in 2000. Click here to read more about the exciting potential comeback.
We'll be reporting live from Mobile World Congress throughout Sunday 26 Feb, so make sure you keep it with The Lowdown, as not to miss any of the news. And, if you've got any questions, drop a comment below.