Everything you need to know about MWC 2021

Everything you need to know about MWC 2021

Traditionally, Mobile World Congress (MWC) Barcelona has been one of the biggest trade shows in the world, hosting more than 2,400 exhibitors and 8,000 CEOs from across the mobile industry. For decades it has been the place where the most innovative mobile technologies and devices are announced.  But after Covid cancelled the event in 2020, and many high-profile brands pulled out of this year’s show – what were the major highlights this time around?

From Elon Musk and Jon Bon Jovi to 5G robots, we have recapped everything you need to know about MWC 2021:


ZTE goes big

With many of its smartphone rivals not attending the show in person, ZTE made its mark on the event by showcasing its latest suite of 5G technologies. As part of its ‘empowering digital transformation’ theme, the company also hosted a virtual showcase to attract attendees both on and offline.

Samsung gets smart

Joining virtually, Samsung chose to unveil details of its One UI Watch interface, which is designed in partnership with Google and will debut on the Galaxy Watch4 series.


Year of the dragon

Qualcomm’s best mobile processor, the Snapdragon 888, received a powerful upgrade at MWC as the company revealed the Snapdragon 888 Plus chipset. Offering faster and enhanced performance, this latest flagship chipset will power all the upcoming top-tier Android devices from the likes of Xiaomi, Honor and Asus.


Lenovo loves Android

The majority of the hardware news came from Lenovo, which virtually launched five new Android tablets at the show – including the premium Yoga Tab 11 and 13 models, as well as the Tab P11 Plus, Tab M7 and M8. But with an underwhelming media presence at the show these announcements failed to grab the headlines.


The verdict

Halfway through MWC, TechCrunch unflatteringly described the event as running out of steam, alluding to the lack of exciting hardware launches.

Despite this, Elon Musk’s virtual appearance to discuss the SpaceX StarLink went down well, and there was a nostalgic experience as Jon Bon Jovi delivered an evening performance. Verizon’s army of robots also offered a nice futuristic touch!

MWC 2021 was always going to be different. While it did not have the glitz and glamour associated with a slew of hardware announcements and technological breakthroughs, it still gave the industry an opportunity to network and reconnect after a near 18-month hiatus. It will now be interesting to see what the GSMA can pull out of the bag to come back with a bang in 2022!

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