MWC 2017 has kicked off and our highly experienced Android Authority team are on the ground in Barcelona right now covering all the essential announcements. We’ve broken down our roundup of everything that’s happened at MWC 2017 so far by manufacturer, which means you can hit the brands you like and skip the ones you don’t. We’ll be updating this post as new information comes to light.
What is MWC and when is it?
MWC stands for Mobile World Congress, the world’s largest mobile electronics trade show, which is held in Barcelona each year. MWC 2017 starts Monday, February 27 and runs through to Thursday, March 2. However, most of the major mobile announcements happen on the two weekend press days prior to the official opening of the show.
LG at MWC 2017
As was expected, LG announced the LG G6 at its press conference on Sunday. Based on poor sales of the LG G5, and corresponding LG Mobile financial woes, the company has gone back to the drawing board with the LG G6 and decided to ditch the modular design concept (a wise move).
Instead, the LG G6 keeps the design simple, with a glass and metal unibody construction (no removable battery this time), rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, USB Type-C port and headphone jack.
As for the specs, the LG G6 features a 5.7-inch QHD display with an 18:9 aspect ratio, Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor, Adreno 530 GPU and 4 GB of RAM. You’ll also find dual 13 MP cameras on the rear, a 5 MP wide-angle camera at the front, 3,300 mAh battery inside and support for microSD cards. For more the G6, check out our hands-on video above and the hands-on review at the link below.
Samsung at MWC 2017
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 and Gear VR controller
At Samsung’s press conference, the South Korean manufacturer revealed the Galaxy Tab S3, as was teased on the company’s MWC invitation.
The stylus-bearing Galaxy Tab S3 arrives with a 9.7-inch 2048 x 1536 (QXGA) Super AMOLED display and is powered by a quad-core 2.15 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 SoC with 4 GB of RAM. There’s a 13 MP camera on the back of the device, with a 5 MP front camera and you’ll also find a 6,000 mAh battery inside. In addition, it runs Android Marshmallow out of the box and supports microSD cards.
The tablet comes in one size and one size only, but Samsung is yet to reveal a price.
Meanwhile, Samsung also announced a controller which would arrive with the upcoming new version of its Gear VR headset. This would bring the unit close to Google’s Daydream View, which also comes with a one-handed remote.
As we’d previously heard, the Samsung Galaxy S8 was not at the show, however, Samsung did reveal that the flagship phone would be unveiled on March 29. As for the pair of folding smartphone prototypes rumored to be at the event — if they’re here, they’re for industry partners’ eyes only.
Huawei/Honor at MWC 2017
Huawei P10/P10 Plus
The big news from Huawei is the arrival of the Huawei P10 and P10 Plus flagships. Both models sport 64-bit octa-core Hisilicon Kirin 960 processors with Mali-G71 MP8 GPUs, but they differ in their screen resolution and sizes: the P10 has a 5.1-inch Full-HD display while the P10 Plus comes in at 5.5-inches with a QHD display.
Inside the P10 you’ll find 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of internal storage and a 3,200 mAh battery, while the P10 Plus has 4 GB and 6 GB RAM options, 64 GB or 128 GB of internal storage and a 3,750 mAh battery.
Front camera sensors are the same at 8 MP sensor with f/1.9 aperture, but the P10 Plus has the superior rear camera; a Leica Dual-Camera 2.0 Pro Edition with 12 and 20 MP sensors and f/1.8 aperture, while the P10’s has the regular edition with f/2.2 aperture.
The P10 and P10 Plus are running Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box with EMUI 5.1 and arrive with eight colors to choose from.
As far as pricing is concerned, the Huawei P10 will cost €649 (~$685) in Europe, while the P10 Plus will start at €699 (~$740) for 64 GB of storage and 4 GB of RAM model. You’ll pay €799 ($845) to get the P10 Plus with 128 GB of storage and 6 GB of RAM and the handsets will be available sometime in March.
Huawei announced the devices in 30 or so countries, including the UK and Australia, but not including the US or Canada (sorry, North America).
Huawei Watch 2
Huawei has also revealed the Huawei Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic at MWC, arriving in March for €329 ($350). Both run Android Wear 2.0 and you can read more about those at the previous link.
We thought Huawei might have launched the rumored Huawei MediaPad T3 tablet at MWC also, as it has seen several recent leaks, but it seems like we’re going to have to wait a bit longer for an official announcement on that.
- Hands-on Huawei P10 review
- Huawei P10 and P10 Plus: what you need to know
- Huawei Watch 2 specs and features
Honor announcement (Honor Magic/Honor V9): 8:00 PM (CET) Wednesday, March 3
As for Huawei’s sub-brand Honor, the Honor Magic was at CES recently and it’s a very nice looking phone, one we sincerely hope gets a global announcement, and the Honor V9 was just unveiled in China (aka the Honor 8 Pro in the US). Huawei has an Honor event planned for 8 PM on March 1, so it’ll either reveal the new 360-degree VR camera in partnership with Insta360 or announce new markets for the Honor Magic or Honor V9.
TCL/BlackBerry at MWC 2017
BlackBerry revealed the KEYone at MWC 2017, the device previously known as the BlackBerry Mercury, which features a return for BlackBerry’s trademark physical keyboard setup.
It was designed by Chinese company TCL communications — like the DTEK 50 and 60 before it — and comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, Adreno 506 GPU and 3 GB of RAM in addition to a 4.5-inch Full-HD display. Other specs include a 3,505 mAh battery, 12 MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture and 1.55 um pixel size, 8 MP front-facing shooter and USB Type-C connectivity.
TCL isn’t aiming to deliver the latest and greatest specs, rather, it’s pushing the security features of the device and the benefits of the keyboard, like the 52 shortcuts it allows for. The BlackBerry KEYone will be available for $549 in the US from April.
- Hands-on: BlackBerry KEYone review
HMD/Nokia at MWC 2017
Nokia 3, 5, 6 and 3310
Nokia had a big MWC this year, introducing both the Nokia 3 and Nokia 5, announcing that the Nokia 6 (above) would go global, and revealing a brand new feature phone based on the original Nokia 3310.
The Nokia 3 is an entry-level device with aluminum frame and polycarbonate rear. The handset comes with a MediaTek 6737 processor, 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage and a 5-inch HD display. You’ll also find a 8 MP camera on the front and back and it will be running Android 7.1.1 Nougat when it launches for ~$147 in Q2, 2017.
The Nokia 5, meanwhile, also comes with a 5-inch HD display but it’s slightly more powerful, featuring a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 processor, 16 GB storage, 2 GB RAM, a 13 MP rear camera, and an 8MP wide-angle front camera. This handset also launches with Android 7.1.1 Nougat onboard and will ship alongside the Nokia 6 in Q2, priced at $199.
The revered Nokia 3310 doesn’t run Android or have a touchscreen, it’s not even a smartphone, but what it does have is 30-day battery life and a reimagined version of Snake — so I guess we should all be happy. It’s going to launch in Q2, 2017 for the price of €49 (about $52) and will outsell the iPhone 8.
Finally, the Nokia 6 is going to launch for around $242 when it leaves China in Q2, 2017, and will come with a special Nokia 6 ARTE addition — featuring piano black finish, 64 GB storage and 4 GB RAM — for $299.
Sony at MWC 2017
Sony Xperia XA1 and XA1 Ultra
Sony introduced not one, not two, but four devices at its press conference on February 27. Beginning with the XA1 and XA1 Ultra, these are a pair of flat, angular handsets with edge-to-edge displays and chunky top and bottom bezels. Sony once again isn’t afraid to keep its display resolutions at 720p, which is what you’ll find on the 5-inch XA1 screen, while the 6-inch XA1 Ultra gets the Full HD treatment.
The phones come with identical 23 MP 1/2.3-inch Exmor RS sensors and the same 64-bit based octa-core MediaTek helio P20 processor, though the XA1 Ultra will have a larger battery (2,700 mAh compared to 2,300 mAh). Sony said the XA1 go on sale on May 1, 2017 for $299.99, while the XA1 Ultra, arriving in late spring, is yet to receive a confirmed retail price. We’ll let you know when it does.
For everything else on these handsets, hit the link below.
- Hands-on Sony Xperia XA1 and XA1 Ultra review
Sony XZ Premium and XZs
The Sony XZ features a 5.2-inch 1080p Triluminos display, Snapdragon 820 processor and 4 GB of RAM — this is what you could call the successor to the Xperia Compact series. Meanwhile, the XZ Premium comes with a Snapdragon 835 chip, 5.5-inch display and reintroduces that 4K resolution seen previously on the Xperia X Performance.
The XZs features 32 GB of internal storage space and 4 GB of RAM, with a 2,900 mAh battery, while the XZ Premium has 64 GB of internal storage, 4 GB of RAM and a 3,230 mAh battery. Both of the devices have a 19 MP 1/2.3″ Exmor RS sensor, 5-axis image stabilization and an HD slow-mo mode which runs at 960 frames-per-second. They’ll also run Android Nougat out of the box.
The Sony XZs is coming April 5, 2017 with a suggested retail price of $699.99 but we’re still waiting on availability details of the XZ Premium (though we’d expect it to cost more and arrive later).
- Hands-on Sony Xperia XZ and XZs Ultra review
Lenovo/Motorola at MWC 2017
Motorola Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus
Lenovo introduced the Moto G5 and G5 Plus at MWC, two devices with similar looks that differ on the internals. The Moto G5 has a 5.0-inch LCD display with 1080p resolution, 1.4 GHz Snapdragon 430 chipset, 2 or 3 GB of RAM (depending on region), 16 or 32 GB of storage (again, depending on where you buy it), and microSD support up to 128GB. In addition, it has a 13 MP rear camera with an f/2.0 aperture, phase detection autofocus and a 1.1μm pixel size, as well as a 5 MP front-facing camera with an f/2.2 aperture and a 1.4μm pixel size.
The Moto G5 Plus, meanwhile, also features a 5.2-inch 1080p display, but comes with the more powerful processor, a 2.0 GHz Snapdragon 625 chip, 2/3/4GB of RAM options, 16/32/64GB of onboard storage and the same microSD. The rear camera comes in at 12 MP with “dual autofocus pixels”, an f/1.7 aperture and a 1.4μm pixel size, while the 5 MP front shooter sports an f/2.2 aperture and a 1.4μm pixel size.
- Hands-on: Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus review
Alcatel at MWC 2017
Alcatel U5, A3, and A5 LED announcement
Despite rumors of an Idol 5 Pro announcement, Alcatel had no such phone on show. Instead Alcatel announced three new budget devices, the Alcatel U5, A3, and A5 LED.
Starting with the Alcatel U5, the company is billing this phone as the most affordable phone with a 5-inch display and 4G LTE capabilities. The specifications do fall at the lower-end of the spectrum, with it featuring a display resolution of 480 x 854, a 1.1 GHz quad-core MT6737M processor, 1 GB of RAM, 8 GB of built-in storage, microSD card support, a 5 MP rear camera and a 2 MP front-facing shooter with both including an LED flash, and a 2,050 mAh battery.
Next in line is the Alcatel A3. The specifications are a step above the U5, with the A5 coming with a 1.25 GHz quad-core MT6737 processor, 1.5 GB of RAM, 16 GB of built-in storage, a 5-inch HD display, microSD card support, a 13 MP rear camera and a 5 MP front-facing unit, and a 2,460 mAh battery. An extra layer of security is available with the presence of a fingerprint scanner on the back, that can also be used to take selfies with one touch.
The most unique of the three was the Alcatel A5 LED, which has a special LED cover that can be setup to perform a variety of light shows. For example, you can have different patterns and colors for different contacts and type of notifications, or set up unique LED cover patterns and themes for a new look everyday. You can also add an extra element to your music listening experience, with the LEDs lighting up and moving along with your tunes.
On the specifications front, the A5 LED comes with a 5.2-inch display with a 720 x 1280 resolution, a 1.5 GHz octa-core MT6753 processor, 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of on-board storage, microSD card support, an 8 MP rear camera and a 5 MP front-facing shooter, both with a LED flash, and a 2,800 mAh battery.
ZTE at MWC 2017
ZTE Gigabit Phone
As expected, ZTE showed off the Gigabit Phone. Well, they talked about the concept anyway. There weren’t actually any photos to catch or anything. What we do know is that the phone will use ZTE’s Pre5G Giga+ MBB technology, which is reportedly “three times as powerful at improving data processing capability in the current network”. Combined with the use of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor and its X16 modem, the phone will be able to achieve gigabit download speeds with the support of downlink 256-QAM through triple-carrier modulation convergence. ZTE says this allows for data processing that is six times greater than through the use of single-carrier modulation.
ZTE Blade V8 Lite and the Blade V8 Mini
The higher end of the two new phones is the ZTE Blade V8 Mini, which sports a metallic unibody design. Perhaps the most standout feature the V8 Mini offers is its 13 and 2MP dual camera setup on the back, which will allow you to take advantage of bokeh effects and a handy refocus mode. These cameras also support a 3D shooting mode, which will allow the sensors to take photos from different angles and combine them together to generate 3D pictures. What’s more, the device also comes with manual camera controls and automatic HDR.
The V8 Mini sports a 5.0-inch display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of on-board storage, expandable memory, a 5MP front camera and a non-removable 2,800mAh battery. It also features a fingerprint sensor on the back, which will let you launch your favorite app when the screen is off or locked. And as mentioned, the V8 Mini also runs Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box, complete with ZTE’s MiFavor 4.2 software overlay.
Moving on to the ZTE Blade V8 Lite, the phone has a 5.0-inch display, an octa-core MediaTek 6750 processor, an 8MP rear camera, 5MP front camera, as well as a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor. In addition, this device runs Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box, along with ZTE’s Mifavor 4.2.
Announcements yet to come
Acer at MWC 2017
Acer “two new phones, one new wearable” announcement: TBC
Acer has, rather circuitously, revealed it will unveil two new phones and a wearable at MWC. The news comes via an interview with Acer’s EMEA president, who told Tbreak that Acer would have a “couple products. One will be a wearable, I cannot say too much…. We are also launching a couple of new phones. It is not fifty phones, but we’ll continue to make a statement in the Android market.” So yeah, let’s wait and see.
Asus at MWC 2017
Asus Zenfone 3 Go announcement: TBC
Asus will reportedly reveal a new budget Zenfone 3 Go at MWC. The $160 handset is rumored to feature a 5-inch HD display with a Snapdragon 410 chipset and 32 GB of RAM. It’ll apparently have a 13 MP main camera and 5 MP front-facing shooter.
Asus is also rumored to have a successor to the original Chromebook Flip in the works, called the Flip C101. The new Chromebook may not arrive until Computex later in the year, but if it’s at MWC we’ll be sure to bring you the latest. A new Zenbook Pro with GTX 1060 graphics should keep laptop geeks happy too, but again, nothing has yet been confirmed.
Oppo at MWC 2017
Oppo “5x smartphone photography tech” announcement: around 2:30 PM (CET) Monday February 27
Oppo has confirmed it will reveal “5x smartphone photography technology that will give users unprecedented ability to capture highly detailed images” at MWC. But the company stops short of stating the new camera tech will be unveiled in a new smartphone. Oppo’s press conference is scheduled to start at 2:00 PM on the first day of MWC.
HTC at MWC 2017
HTC did not announce any plans for MWC 2017
The company did just skirt convention — as it usually does — by announcing new devices just outside the typical CES-MWC window. The HTC U Ultra and U Play were announced on January 12, just after CES wrapped up and last year the HTC 10 was announced just after CES.
Evan Blass leaked an HTC teaser video recently showing a number of new devices, including an HTC Vive-branded handset. There’s no telling if or when any of those devices will be announced though, and the same can be said of the leaked HTC One X10.
Some mid-range devices in the Desire line might be announced at MWC, but HTC has already stated it will cut its smartphone launches in half in 2017. The existence of the endlessly-rumored HTC smartwatch has also been officially denied by HTC’s president of smartphones and connected devices, Chialin Chang.
Chang also recently confirmed that HTC will have a new flagship when the Snapdragon 835 arrives — but not for MWC.
Xiaomi at MWC 2017
Last year, Xiaomi attended its first MWC and held a press conference to launch the Xiaomi Mi 5. The recently-leaked Xiaomi Mi 6 therefore could have been scheduled for this year, but Xiaomi has since confirmed it will not be in Barcelona.
Xiaomi’s plans for global expansion have been rumored for ages but with Hugo Barra announcing his imminent departure from Xiaomi in favor of heading up Facebook’s VR efforts, Xiaomi is in need of a new global frontman.
That’s everything we’ve seen so far at MWC 2017. What has impressed you the most? Let us know in the comments.