The Mobile World Congress is the largest mobile phone event in the world. The event will take place in Barcelona between February 26, and March 1, 2018. The manufacturers will present their new releases, as well as their best smartphones for 2018. Among the great number of exhibitors, you will also find companies that produce mobile phone accessories, software, security, or other consumer electronics.
The most anticipated products are the premium smartphones. Nokia has prepared a big, mysterious surprise. A new generation of flagship phones, the Galaxy S9 and the S9+, is expected from Samsung. LG is expected to introduce its best device, the successor to the V30. Sony is also anticipated to present an innovation.
A middle range of smartphones will be introduced by Xiaomi with its Mi Max 3, as well as by Moto, a brand produced by Lenovo. This manufacturer will offer several devices for less demanding users. Apart from smartphones, the MWC has always introduced various technical innovations, future concepts and visions, in the area of mobile phone function and design. Moreover, we can look forward to tablets or wearables.
Google is the leading Android operating system developer. The company has always had its place in the world's largest mobile phone industry event. However, news suggest that the American giant will not present any new hardware in Barcelona. Yet, there in no doubt that the presentation of Google will be worth it, just like it was at the CES show. Google will likely focus on its Google Assistant artificial intelligence.
Last year, we were informed that Google Assistant will appear on all the smartphones running an Android 6.0 or higher in addition to Google Pixels. The number of additional devices (headphones, smart home appliances) that are compatible with this AI has increased significantly. It is time to learn about the new features and enhancements Google Assistant has developed for our smart devices. It would be a great surprise if Google introduced an updated version of the Google Home smart home assistant at the MWC 2018. It was released for sale in the United States 14 months ago.
The TCL company, which has manufactured BlackBerry mobile phones since the end of 2016, was surprisingly successful with its first unique BlackBerry KEYone smartphone (introduced at the MWC 2017). Since BlackBerry did not present any hot innovation at the CES electronics trade show in January, we hope it's keeping its best for the MWC 2018 in Barcelona!
In addition, BlackBerry has made an official announcement and revealed its plans - two smartphones with a QWERTY keyboard were promised for 2018. Since then, the brand's fans have been extremely excited, and it is therefore likely that at least one of the new mobile phones will be introduced to the public at the MWC 2018. Whether it will be the second series of the KEYone (KEYone 2, KEYtwo) with an enhanced keyboard and new features, or a completely different smartphone at the trade show, we will find out at the show.
Apple does not change its rituals and will not show up in Barcelona this year. Given their record-breaking revenues in 2017, Apple doesn't really need to attend the trade show. We have to wait until the beginning of June, when the WWDC 2018 (Worldwide Developers Conference) is held. Last year, we witnessed the introduction of the smart HomePod speaker, followed by the new iPad Pro 12.9" and the iPad Pro 10.5". A significant part of the programme was devoted to the live demonstration of the iOS 11 and watchOS 4 operating systems. This year, we can probably expect a frameless iPad and an advancement in VR/AR.
The Japanese technology leader heads to the MWC 2018 with great expectations. February 26 (the very first day of the trade show) is a crucial date, due to the spectacular press conference that will introduce the frameless Xperia XZ Pro mobile phone. So far, we have heard about an 5.7" OLED display with a 4K resolution. It is almost certain that Sony will use a dual rear camera that will hopefully upgrade the phone closer to the best camera phones. Sony introduced the new Xperia XA2, XA2 Ultra and Xperia L2 at the CES 2018 conference. We already have these phones in stock in several different colours.
Samsung will also contribute to the MWC 2018. As mentioned above, it will present its flagship mobile phone, Samsung Galaxy S9, and its larger fellow, the S9+. The Samsung show will be held one day before the event starts, on Sunday, February 25.
The greatest innovated feature of the new S9 is expected to be the camera. New features include a variable aperture of f/1.5 and f/2.4, and a Galaxy S9+ dual camera. The design of the Galaxy S9 remains similar to that of the Samsung Galaxy S8 but we expect thinner frames. We are also pleased that the fingerprint reader has been moved below the camera, making it easier for the index finger to reach.
Last year, Nokia ressurected and introduced several new mobile phones. In addition to smartphones, Nokia brought back the legendary Nokia 3310 (2017) and gave it a modern design, making it an ideal mobile phone for less demanding users. The phone has been a success and the manufacturer is reportedly working on an LTE upgrade for the MWC 2018.
In addition, we should look forward to the new flagship model, the Nokia 9. According to speculation, it will be a high-performance smartphone powered by a Snapdragon 835 processor. It will also boast a 6GB RAM, which is even larger than the memory of Samsung Galaxy S9.
The IP68 durability certification and a Carl-Zeiss dual camera with a 13 and 12MP resolution are fantastic news. The biometrics will feature an iris scanner and a fingerprint reader. Last but not least, the device will boast a nearly pure Android 8.0 Oreo operating system.
Asus will definitely not arrive empty-handed to Barcelona. It has officially confirmed the introduction of a new range of flagship mobile phones. The range will be called Asus Zenfone 5 and will offer three devices. The speculated names are Asus Zenfone 5, the lightweight Asus Zenfone 5 Lite and the Asus Zenfone 5 Max with a larger battery. We will find out more on Tuesday, February 27.
The new Xiaomi Mi 7 flagship smartphone will not be presented at the Barcelona trade show. The Chinese manufacturer is not planning on introducing any significant new features and is expected to present its already existing phones and other electronics at the MWC 2018. The Mi Mix 2S or Mi Max 3 mobile phones were also discussed, however, Xiaomi will probably introduce them during its own event, which is something the brand is known for.
Huawei fans will have to wait for the flagship smartphone until the end of March. The upcoming P20 - or P11 - is unlikely to be introduced at the MWC 2018. We can presumably expect budget mobile phones and other electronics.
Huawei will introduce the new generation of Huawei Watch 2 smart watches. The new Mediapad tablet should be a success as well. It is rumoured that the brand will implement Huawei Pay in Europe. It is a near-field communication payment system that the company introduced to the Chinese market in 2016.
Let's take a look at another mobile phone brand. LG will definitely show up in Barcelona. It was originally assumed that the new LG G7 was going to be inroduced, but we will only meet the upgraded LG V30. It is speculated that it will have an increased memory storage up to 256GB and a massive artificial intelligence utilisation, including a connection to the Google Assistant.
Motorola and its Moto smartphone range are part of Lenovo. We can look forward to several interesting devices. Motorola doesn't worry much about keeping secrets. The Moto Z3 and Z3 Play with a 18:9 aspect ratio will be part of the main range. The larger display offers more pixels in height and an enhanced user experience. The smartphones will certainly support the Moto Mods add-on modules whose offer will be hopefully expanded.
Last but not least, we can expect the first copy of the iPhone X. Motorola is working on the Moto X5 with a 5.9" display that will have a cut out display top.