With CES 2019 firmly out of the way, next on the major tech show agenda is Mobile World Congress 2019.
This year, MWC takes place between the 25 and 28 February where we hope to be getting our hands on some shiny new smartwatches, fitness trackers, hearables and find out what’s new in the world of VR and AR.
MWC 2018 wasn’t exactly awash with wearables. It was mostly dominated by VR with some interesting concepts and prototypes giving us a glimpse at the devices we can expect to don in the future.
So what can we expect at this year’s show? We’ve picked out the companies that may well have something new and innovative for us to get excited about.
More Samsung Galaxy goodness
It’s looking increasingly likely that the Samsung Galaxy Sport smartwatch will be unveiled at Samsung’s Unpacked event on 20 February. So what does that leave to talk about a week later at MWC? Well, perhaps that’ll mean a quiet show for Samsung.
Or it could have more to show off if recent rumors are to be believed. Those rumors have uncovered the names of potential new wearables Samsung will be looking to announce this year. The Galaxy Buds, Galaxy Fit and Galaxy Fit e names have all surfaced suggesting a new hearable and a pair of fitness trackers could on the way. Maybe an MWC unveiling will be too soon after Unpacked. But you can never rule out anything with Samsung.
All things Vive
HTC’s Vive Cosmos VR headset was officially unveiled at CES in January, but we didn’t get a chance to get our hands on it. While a consumer version of the Cosmos isn’t expected to launch until the second half of 2019, MWC could be our first opportunity to find out what the Oculus Quest rival has to offer.
As a reminder, the Cosmos uses inside-out tracking, so you don’t need to worry about installing sensors all over your home. HTC says you can use it on the go, but it’s a PC first setup. There are two cameras on the side of the headset, an integrated speaker and it comes with two new controllers. It will also showcase a new user interface, so there’s plenty more for us to learn about the Cosmos and what it’s capable of.
Something new from Sony
We probably have to give up on ever seeing a new Sony smartwatch, as it seems the tech giant is more focused on wearable tech that lives in and on your ears. Last year, we finally got to awkwardly try on the Xperia Ear Duo, which didn’t get the greatest write up from us. But it did offer some interesting smarts inside of a bonkers-looking device. So there’s a chance we could see the evolution of this tech, particularly Sony’s own smart assistant, which definitely shows promise. A Sony smartwatch or fitness tracker though seems highly unlikely.
Forget flexible phones, let’s talk flexible wearables
No doubt about it, flexible phones are going to be the talk of the town at this year’s MWC. Samsung, Huawei Xiaomi among others are expected to get in on the action.
ZTE brand Nubia though has other ideas and is putting its flexible tech-making skills to use for a flexible fitness tracker with an LED display that moves with a band.
That’s according to Ni Fei, GM of Nubia smartphones who has hinted that it will follow up its ‘a’ flexible screen wearable prototype unveiled last year (pictured above) with a tracker at MWC 2019. We can’t wait to get this on our wrists if it does turn up.
More Snapdragon Wear 3100-powered Wear watches
Last year, Qualcomm announced its next generation Wear 3100 processor designed for smartwatches that aimed to make your Wear OS watch last longer among other improvements. So far, only a handful of watches have included Qualcomm’s new tech including the Fossil Sport (pictured above) and new luxury timepieces from Montblanc and Louis Vuitton.
Two of out of three of those smartwatches are out of reach for most, so MWC could be time for more affordable options running on Wear 3100 to show up. We haven’t seen Wear watches from Huawei and LG for a while now, so this could be the ideal time to give us something new.
Oppo enters the smartwatch fray
Oppo is another tech company making waves outside of its native China and that’s largely been down to its feature-packed smartphones. According to its CEO Chen Mingyong though, smartwatches are on the Oppo agenda with confirmation that the wearable device is one it’s going to start making and launching. Oppo hasn’t given any indication as to how near it is to making that a reality, but MWC could be the place to give us a glimpse at what it’s working on.