Technology companies and other organizations attending Mobile World Congress (MWC) conference and expo in Barcelona have unveiled everything from a 5G-connected, soccer-playing robot to smart sensors that can display what's on the other side of a wall. But smartphones have dominated the new devices making their debuts at the event.
Phone makers launching new flagships and other devices include Asus, HMD/Nokia, Huawei, LG, Samsung, Sony, and ZTE. A number of new laptops and convertible PCs have also been announced, including devices from Huawei and Lenovo.
Set to run through tomorrow, Mobile World Congress is the largest annual conference and expo for the mobile device and services industry. The event is organized by the Groupe Speciale Mobile Association, a global industry organization for mobile operators.
Samsung Galaxy S9, S9 Plus
One of the most anticipated arrivals in Barcelona was Samsung's latest version of its Galaxy S smartphone line. The company revealed two new Android flagships, the Galaxy S9 and the S9 Plus, during an Unpacked event Sunday, the day before MWC's official kickoff.
Arriving in the U.S. market on March 16, the 5.8-inch, $719.99 Samsung Galaxy S9 and 6.2-inch, $839.99 Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus each feature a dual-aperture camera for enhanced photography and videography, Bixby artificial intelligence, stereo speakers, and an iris sensor for biometric security.
New and Retro Phones from Nokia
In addition to announcing several all new Android smartphones, HMD Global/Nokia also went retro by unveiling a revived 4G feature phone, the Nokia 8110 that famously appeared in "The Matrix" in 1999. Available in the U.S. in May, the "banana phone" will be priced at $97.
Meanwhile, Nokia's new smartphones include the 5.5-inch, "ultra-compact powerhouse" Nokia 8 Sirocco (pictured above), the 6-inch Nokia 7 Plus with dual rear cameras, the Nokia 6, which is made of aluminum and Gorilla Glass, and the entry-level Nokia 1. The Sirocco, 7 Plus and 6 all run on Android One, Google's operating system designed for efficient processing, power, and security, especially for users in emerging markets.
Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact
Sony's new flagship devices include the Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact, both of which are set to ship globally in March.
Designed for entertainment, the 5.7-inch Xperia XZ2 features a full-HD display with new haptic capabilities "so you can feel your viewing experience," Sony said. Despite its smaller size, the 5-inch Xperia XZ2 Compact also offers a large full-HD screen and other XZ2 features, including High-Res Audio and front-facing stereo speakers.
Other new smartphones launched at MWC include LG's new V30, which features the company's new artificial intelligence, ThinQ; ZTE's folding, dual-screen Axon M; Vivo's Apex, a concept smartphone that features an in-display fingerprint scanner in the bottom half of the front screen; and the 5.7-inch Asus ZenFone 5G, which is being widely described as a clone of Apple's new iPhone X.
In addition to phones, companies attending MWC, including Huawei and Lenovo, also took the wraps off several new mobile computing devices. Huawei unveiled the MateBook X Pro notebook and the MediaPad M5 Series tablet, while Lenovo introduced the Yoga 730 and Yoga 530 convertibles.
Mobile World Congress wraps up tomorrow with a full day of programs on 5G networking, artificial intelligence, digital identity, digital social innovation, drones, gamification, the Internet of Things, smart cities, and other topics.