2016 was an interesting year for smartphones. Samsung said “feck it” and launched an unusually explosive Note7. Apple said “feck it” and removed the headphone jack. While team Goos3D said “feck it” and gave up their smartphones altogether. What’s in store for the year ahead? Still a little hard to tell, but MWC 2017 will certainly give us an idea.
What is Mobile World Congress?
Hands up. We’ve been covering MWC for a few years now, but we’ve never properly explained what it’s about. MWC is one of the biggest events on the tech calendar. Every year in Barcelona, the biggest names of the mobile world come together. Everyone except Apple that is of course but sure look.
This year’s event takes place between 27 February and 2 March.
What to expect from MWC 2017
2017 does promise to be an exciting year for the mobile world. Well, every year actually does when you think about it. Still, here’s what getting us really excited about MWC 2017.
Samsung’s “big” announcement
Ok. Samsung announces their new flagship every year ar MWC. I get that they pushed the launch of the Galaxy S8 for “safety reasons”, but is everything as it seems? An invite sent to the press suggests there will be a big launch in Barcelona.
Samsung sends out invite for product launch on 26 February, Galaxy Tab S3 expected… https://t.co/Zp7KWDlCMA @maxlangridge1 pic.twitter.com/QD1Un9IT8s
— Pocketlint (@Pocketlint) February 1, 2017
Unfortunately, the invite is missing the Unpacked branding that accompanies flagship launches.
Expect Samsung to fill the smartphone void with a shiny new tablet – the Tab S3.
Here’s what @samsungireland are filling the #S8 sized void at #mwc17 with. Say hello to the #TabS3 pic.twitter.com/CF0wueBLJa
— Goos3D (@Goos3D_IE) February 21, 2017
I just can’t imagine Samsung will let the event pass by without some sort of surprise for the mobile world. Rumours are rife that the Note7 will make some sort of return with a new non-exploding battery. Will it be at MWC? Time will tell.
It’s funny how things work out sometimes. Just a few months ago I was part of the Goos3D team rocking old school Nokias for charity. Now we’re counting down the days to Nokia relaunching the 3310. No joking. Nokia will bring back the Nokia 3310 at MWC 2017.
The big question is how true to the original will Nokia stay? Retro fans will want the Nokia 3310 to come with classic versions of Snake and a battery that lasts two weeks. Rumours of a colour screen would dash the hopes of thousands. This is the surprise package of MWC 2017 with the world looking on.
Nokia will also launch some sort of smartphone too, but for once that’s not the priority.
The football fans amongst you will understand my comparison between Huawei and Liverpool. I think every year is going to be ‘their year’. Huawei has been churning out extremely solid phones every year. Unfortunately, Chinese phones have a reputation of being knock-offs. That hasn’t been the case for a long time. Huawei is one of many Chinese companies going unnoticed for making great phones.
At MWC 2017, Huawei will announce the P10. They’ve kept everything extremely quite so far.
Barcelona. 26.02.17. Stay tuned… The #HuaweiP10 is coming! #standout #OO pic.twitter.com/dvoKj0bXzr
— Huawei Mobile (@HuaweiMobile) February 13, 2017
All we can really tell is that the dual-lens camera we saw on the P9 is likely to continue. It’s also looking like Huawei will launch the P10 with various colours. They have daily teasers on their YouTube channel, the most telling of which relates to colour.
It’s not just smartphones that has me excited about Huawei though. My beloved Huawei Watch would finally appear to be going out of date. Huawei will likely launch the Huawei Watch 2. They kind of have to really. Android Wear 2.0 provides new functionality to take advantage of.
We’ll be tuning in to see the latest coming out of Huawei’s stable for sure.
You’ve probably not heard of Oppo. Again, we’re really missing out by not paying attention to the Chinese market. Oppo are rising quick through the ranks over there and for good reason. Their flagship phone genuinely challenges the best phones on the market today.
As for MWC 2017, Oppo would appear to be prepping to launch new camera technology. Dubbed the 5x project, it appears this will be all about quality. Still, little known for know, but certainly one to watch.
With Samsung essentially sitting this one out, MWC 2017 is a great opportunity for LG to wow. Strangely, they’ve unveiled huge elements of their new flagship – the LG G6.
The usual specs are all there. You get a 5.7-inch display, a whopping 6GB of RAM and a 13-megapixel camera. LG are another adopting USB-C but bucking another trend. The LG G6 will apparently have a removable battery. Seriously? Nokia 3310’s and removable batteries at MWC. What the bloody hell next?
Well, don’t worry. LG are remaining somewhat conventional. Their build up ads this week suggest you’ll get water and dust proofing.
BlackBerry’s Android phone
Nobody is more shocked than I am that BlackBerry is making this list. The BlackBerry Mercury is a fascinating concept. Running Android, the phone is a touchscreen-button hybrid. We don’t know much else about the Mercury except it’s rocking USB-C.
That’s nowhere near everything you can hope to expect from MWC 2017. The likes of Sony will also be on show with VR set to be a big talking point again. We’ll be keeping a close eye on everything too, so give us a Like on Facebook to be sure you don’t miss out.