MWC 2022 | Here are the highlights of the Barcelona show
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Barcelona once again became the center of attention for the mobile industry. During MWC 2022, NextPit showed the main announcements, products, and technologies on display on the show floor. Here, you can find the highlights of the Barcelona fair this year.
- Phone releases and other announcements from MWC 2022
- MWC 2022: Brands that did not participate (or had a virtual presence only)
- What is the MWC Barcelona?
- When and where is the MWC 2022 held
Note: This article will be updated regularly so that you don't miss any information about phone releases and other announcements at the show this year. In the meantime, don't hesitate to tell us in the comments what you expect from this edition of the biggest tech show in Europe.
Phone releases and other announcements
Day zero: Pre-MWC with construction work and Showstoppers
MWC is much more than the event's show floor, in fact, some meetings, and side-events are held in the days prior. Like the Showstoppers, where some smaller companies and start-ups show their products and prototypes to the media. As a bonus, we took a walk in the main hall while the booths were getting ready for the MWC 2022.
Day one: Realme, Xiaomi Poco, Qualcomm, Honor
MWC went full throttle on Monday when the show floor opened to the media and public, and some of the companies held their keynotes.
Realme's first flagship
The keynotes started early on Monday morning, with Realme stepping further into the flagship market. The Realme GT 2 Pro is powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, and doesn't have the same compromises we have seen on the first Realme GT.
Poco brings new mid-rangers
Instead of presenting the flagship Xiaomi 12 range to the West, the Chinese brand opted to announce two mid-range phones from its Poco brand. The Poco X4 Pro 5G and Poco M4 Pro seem like good bang-for-the-buck devices, but as always, they won't be released in North America.
Qualcomm expands its ecosystem
Without a new processor to show, Qualcomm basically left the Chinese brands free to advertise the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (aka 8g1) flagship processor launched this past December. The American company took the stage on Monday to present two new components, the Snapdragon X70 modem and the FastConnect 7900 wireless controller, as well as showcase its initiatives in AR/XR (which the company tagged as "metaverse"), industrial IoT, network partnerships, personal computing, and automotive.
- Recap Qualcomm's main announcements here
- The Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3 promises up to 28 hours of PC usage in the ThinkPad X13s
Honor steps further into the West
Trying to solidify its presence outside China, now free from Huawei, Honor's highlight in MWC 2022 was the flagship Magic 4 Pro smartphone. Powered by the Snapdragon 8g1, the device is heavily invested in photography, with a camera module that resembles some (Huawei) Mate designs from the past.
- See all the Honor Magic 4's main details
- Honor also presented the Earbuds 3 Pro and Watch GS 3
- We also went hands-on with the Magic V foldable
OnePlus teases a 150 watts charger
While sister-brand Realme teased "the fastest phone charger" for MWC. OnePlus showcased a 150W charger, with the caveat that the accessory will be only available in the second quarter. Will it arrive fast enough to steal Realme's thunder?
Day two: HTC Vive, OnePlus, Mixed Reality headsets by Lynx and more!
Day two was relatively calm when contrasted with the barrage of presentations that took place yesterday. Today our editors on the ground had the chance to walk around, see the new innovations and prepare hands-on opinions. But there was still time for a quick interview and a presentation of a new Mixed reality system by Lynx.
NextPit had the chance to chat with the CEO of the company, Stan Larroque, and discuss the growing hype around VR and AR headsets, their partnership with Qualcomm and what we can expect from the future of Mixed Reality headsets.
Additionally, a full interview should be coming in the following days so stay tuned with NextPit.
Honor Magic 4 Pro Hands on
Next up, my colleague, Benjamin Lucks managed to get his hands on the new Honor Magic 4 Pro. The new flagship by Honor is aiming to the top of the competition like Samsung and Apple. In short, he praises the quick charging that goes up to 100-Watts, the camera array and the display.
OnePlus pushes charging further to 240 Watts
Picking up from yesterday's teaser for a 150W charger, the company discussed about pushing the charging limits further up to 240W. As an extra, our OnePlus 10 Pro hands-on is in the works and should be ready tomorrow so check back with us for that.
HTC talks about the Viverse
HTC also made quite a few claims about the future of artificial worlds that will be accessible through VR headsets. The company demonstrated the Viverse, an alternative to the Metaverse by Meta (former Facebook). The new virtual ecosystem will allow users to access it from many different platforms like smartphones, PCs, tablets, and more. But more on that on the recap video of the day!
Day three: Saving some surprises for later
With all the main keynotes over, we don't really expect many announcements on the third day of the MWC. Despite all that, there were some news directly from the show floor, including one brand that was a little bit away from the spotlights.
Realme's Ultra Dart Charger promises up to 200W (but delivers 150W)
Not to be outdone by sister brand OnePlus, Realme finally unveiled its touted "fastest smartphone charging technology". The UltraDart charger promises power output from 100W to 200W. But there is a BIG caveat. The first compatible model will offer "only" 150W, the Realme GT Neo3, which is expected to be released "soon", packing the new MediaTek Dimensity 8100 processor.
HTC will release a flagship phone
Once the standard in Android (and Windows) phones, HTC practically disappeared from the phone market, with just some mid-range models in selected markets. Our colleagues at WinFuture reported that the brand will launch a high-end phone "soon", citing sources at Taiwanese website DigiTimes. Not one to miss the current trend, the phone will apparently focus on the metaverse bandwagon, which presumably mean VR and AR applications.
The B-side of MWC 2022
And before saying goodbye to this year's edition, our team went out into the halls of the show to enjoy a bit of the B-side of the event. Find out more:
MWC 2022: Brands that did not participate (or held a virtual presence only)
In this section are listed the manufacturers that have either officially confirmed that they will not be physically present (and therefore only virtually), that they will not be present at all, or those who simply have not yet communicated about their possible participation in MWC 2022.
For the third year in a row, Sony has declared that it will not be present at MWC. The GSMA responded by saying it was surprised by the announcement as the Japanese giant has not participated in the show since 2019:
The GSMA was surprised to see Sony's announcement about MWC22 in Barcelona given that the company had not planned to participate in the show anyway. Sony has not exhibited at MWC since 2019 due to strategic business decisions made by the company.
Lenovo has confirmed that it will not attend this edition of the MWC due to the still unstable health situation. The brand should however participate via a virtual event as seen in the teaser published on the official website and in a statement published on Twitter:
MWC UPDATE: Due to the ongoing trends surrounding COVID, Lenovo’s activation at MWC 2022 will be fully virtual.— Lenovo Stories & News (@LenovoNews) January 25, 2022
Asus has confirmed to TechRadar that it will not participate in MWC 2022. The brand's last participation was in 2018. On the other hand, it would be very surprising if any of the brand's upcoming smartphones, the Zenfone 9 and ROG Phone 6 were to be introduced at MWC 2022. The manufacturer's launch schedule is not really aligned with the Barcelona tech show.
As for the other brands such as Vivo, TCL, Alcatel or ZTE, no official announcement has been made yet. If a new brand confirms its presence at MWC 2022, we will keep you informed.
What is the MWC in Barcelona?
The Mobile World Congress or simply MWC is one of the biggest tech shows in the world. It is held every year in February in Barcelona. Contrary to the other big shows like the CES in Las Vegas or the IFA in Berlin, the MWC has the particularity to be only dedicated to innovations in the mobile field. Thus, many major brands take advantage of the show to present their latest product and service innovations.
Despite the fact that in recent years, major manufacturers are increasingly presenting their products in dedicated events, the MWC remains a must for all those interested in smartphones, tablets and more. But it must be admitted that the organization remains on two consecutive years very complicated in the face of the health crises.
The MWC 2021 was held in person but was shifted from February to June with many cancellations, like that of Google. And the 2020 edition before it was simply canceled.
When and where is held the MWC 2022?
MWC 2022 happens from February 28 to March 3, 2022, in Barcelona as it has been every year since 2006 and at least until 2023. The show is held in the Fira Gran Via, the premises of the Barcelona Trade Fair. Last year, the GSMA, the organization of the MWC, reported that 120,000 people attended MWC 2021, 20,000 of which were physically there.