This year's Mobile World Congress (MWC), held in Barcelona, had two huge themes — folding smartphones and 5G.
The former, folding phones, is the first draft of an answer to years of steady smartphone stagnation. The latter, 5G, is worshipped by many who believe it will revolutionize not just phones, but cars, smart home devices, and everything in-between.
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As ever, Mobile World Congress is a show more suited to the largest companies than the smallest. While there are halls full of small tech firms striving for recognition, they often offer services at the enterprise, or business, level. Others are companies not quite ready for consumers, or do not have confirmed plans for entering the U.S. market.
But the bigger names, and a couple of old faces, made a return to MWC to show off what we think will impact your life in the coming year. Here are GearBrain's favorite devices from Mobile World Congress 2019.
Hover over the image below and click the blue arrows to navigate through the slideshow.
Huawei Mate X
Samsung may have landed the first folding phone punch (if we discount Royole and the FlexPai, which is only being sold to developers for now), but Huawei, as far as MWC is concerned, delivered the knockout blow.
The Mate X is a simpler design — a tablet which folds into a phone instead of a phone which opens out into a tablet — yet produces more impressive results. The external screen is larger and does without the huge borders of the Samsung Galaxy Fold. The inner display of the Huawei also avoids the Samsung's awkward notch in its top-right corner, and feels like an altogether more cohesive package.
It isn't perfect, though. The jury is still out on whether we actually need folding phones (or folding tablets, as perhaps the Huawei is), and the $2,600 (€2,299) price tag attracted audible gasps from the audience. But the Chinese company wins this early skirmish.