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MWC Barcelona 2020: "Mobile World Congress" or "Most Won't Come"?

Accepted submission by martyb at 2020-02-11 14:15:29 from the making a major mobile mess dept.
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Each year, the GSMA (GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) Association) holds three MWC (Mobile World Congress) events. The next is MWC Barcelona [mwcbarcelona.com] and is scheduled for 24-27 February 2020 in Barcelona, Spain [wikipedia.org]. The next event scheduled for this year is MWC Shanghai 2020 [mwcshanghai.com], scheduled for 30 June - 2 July 2020 in Shanghai, China [wikipedia.org]. And rounding out 2020 is the last event, MWC Los Angeles, California [mwclosangeles.com] on 28-30 October 2020.

Since 2011, MWC Barcelona has been known as the GSMA Mobile World Capital [gsma.com]. It is the oldest and largest of the MWC series, so some of the largest mobile product announcements occur at this event. The 2018 event attracted attendees around the world. Approximately half of the attendees hold senior positions in their firms. In other words, in the mobile market, MWC Barcelona is a "Really Big Deal."

That was all history. The recent outbreak of the 2019-nCoV Coronovirus has made quite a stir worldwide. Major players in the mobile arena are concerned about sending their representatives to a venue with approximately 100,000 attendees drawn from all around the world.

Major companies in the mobile space have recently announced plans to either skip MWC Barcelona entirely or, in some cases, make presentations remotely. These include: including Intel, TCL, Sony, Amazon, Samsung, Nvidia, Ericsson Vivo, and MediaTek among many others.

For those who are interested in more details on these vendors plans, here are a baker's dozen links expanding on this:

It will be "interesting" to see what the follow-on effects will be from the reduced attendance. The June MWC is scheduled for Shanghai (a major city in China - the country that is the apparent source of the 2019-nCov coronoavirus and imposing major quarantines trying to stem its spread). Thus, unless 2019-nCoV is brought under control in record time, things do not look good for those who were diverted from Barcelona to look forward to making up the difference 4 months later. That leaves waiting for MWC LA at the end of October, or making more one-on-one connections to work out buying and selling decisions.


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