Barcelona probably makes you think about beautiful beaches, sunny skies and vacation. This past week if you were thinking about Barcelona it probably wasn’t for one of those reasons, instead last week everyone thinking about the city was focused on the Mobile World Congress. Mobile World Congress is a yearly event and took place from March 1st to 5th this year, and you guessed it…it’s all about mobile technology.
Going into MWC the big storylines this year were new mobile devices from Samsung and HTC. By the first day both companies had delivered the latest variation of their flagship smartphones. HTC announced the M9 which is being hailed as an incremental spec bump over the M8 and largely holds the same phone design. The Galaxy S6 is being hailed as a reinvention with tacky plastic of the past models left behind, instead an amalgamation of glass and metal make up the new Samsung Galaxy S6. In terms of specs the spec bump was standard with the a key hardware change, Samsung is using it’s Exynos processor over the incumbent Snapdragon 810. Considered by some to be a risky move as Samsung’s processor doesn’t have the repertoire that a Snapdragon does, we will have to wait and see if it pays off. To compliment the S6, the S6 Edge was also announced which features a curved screen on both sides of the phone. Both of these new phones will have Samsung Pay, Samsung’s proprietary mobile payment platform that works with both NFC and magnetic strip readers.
Aside from expected announcements there was some unexpected news from several companies that brought products besides smartphones. Huawei and LG both brought round smart watches that looked spectacular. Huawei in particular showcased their “Huawei Watch” that features the standard metal clasp seen on most mens watches, folding into the rest of the metal band nicely. LG’s watch featured 4g LTE connectivity cutting ties with your smartphone.
We are with you if you said you wouldn’t have expected to see any furniture companies at MWC, but this year we were both wrong. IKEA showed up and bought wireless charging with them. They showcased a complete line of furniture including desks and lamps that feature wireless charging compatible with devices already on the market. Action cameras were also at the show, aside from the ones attendees were wearing, Xiami brought its action camera which is reminiscent of a GoPro but at a fraction of the price and specs that punch above its weight class.
Mobile World Congress put on a good showing this year with lots of big announcements and set the city of Barcelona a buzz with journalists, innovators and media. We thoroughly enjoyed the news coming out of Barcelona all this week and can’t wait until next years installment!