Mobile World Congress2016

   
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Mobile World Congress2016

It's organised by the GSMA annually and in 2016 we're expecting to see some of the year's biggest smartphones to be unveiled at the show. Some of these handsets we've been talking about for a while.

Of course there are a lot of surprises to be revealed at the show, but here it is: here's everything we're expecting to see at MWC 2016.
BlackBerry at MWC 2016

BlackBerry didn't say much about mobile at CES 2016, except dropping in that we could expect Android devices to be launched this year rather than BB 10. Following the great BlackBerry Priv, that's probably a smart move.

Rumours currently suggest a touch and type candybar phone going by the name BlackBerry Vienna. It looks like a budget Android handset based on the Leap, but including a keyboard. There's been previous rumours that BlackBerry might move the Passport over to Android too. With BlackBerry reasserting itself in devices, MWC 2016 could be hugely important for the company.

READ MORE BlackBerry Vienna: What's the story so far?
Google at MWC 2016

Google's Android seeps into almost every hall and aisle at MWC, with the company often having a small stand for business meetings, but then littering all its Android partners with pin badges and other fun stuff. Together not the same was the message in 2015 and with Android Wear adopting new partners, like New Balance, and more adopting Google Cast, there's plenty of space for Google to play.

We're not expecting anything to be announced, as that's normally reserved for Google I/O in May. That's probably where we'll see the first details about Android N. But you can expect plenty of Android news of all flavours, from all quarters at MWC.
HTC at MWC 2016

The One M9 launched at MWC 2015 wasn't the hit that HTC wanted, changing direction with a later launch of the One A9. We're expecting to see the HTC One M10/Perfume launched in 2016.

There's talk that HTC has pushed the handset back to April, so MWC might only see Vive and UA HealthBox getting a big push, although there's rumours of a Desire T7, a mid-range phablet, to launch at MWC.

READ MORE HTC Perfume/One M10: What's the story on HTC's next flagship handset?
Huawei at MWC 2016

Huawei is making waves in the smartphone industry, having seen great gains, and producing some really strong handsets in 2015 with the Nexus 6P, Mate S and the 2016 launch of the Mate 8.

What's missing for Huawei, then, is a regular flagship handset. That would be the Huawei P9 and while rumours for this next handset have already started, speculation suggests it won't arrive at MWC.

Huawei might instead launch a dual-boot notebook. The Matebook is said to be coming with a stylus and there have been several other rumours when it comes to its operating system with Android and Windows cropping up, some claiming both will be on board. The latter is very unlikely though and if it is a 2-in-1 hybrid device, chances are it will be Windows 10. Huawei has a press conference scheduled for Sunday 21 February.

READ MORE Huawei P9: Specs, release date and rumours
Lenovo/Motorola at MWC 2016

Lenovo is reportedly ditching the Motorola branding to focus on the Moto name instead. With a big stake in smartphones, Lenovo is likely to have a presence at MWC, but probably pushing its Vibe smartphone brand.

If there's a Moto handset that's due an update, it will probably be the Moto E, although the company has traditionally launched new devices away from the trade show.

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LG at MWC 2016

LG has confirmed it will be announcing its next flagship - the LG G5 - at MWC. The company has scheduled a press event for 2pm on Sunday 21 February, where we expect to hear all the details.

The new handset is said to be a step-change in design for the most premium handset so far. It's said to be modular in nature, with a metal body, but changeable battery, as well as offering additional Magic Slot functions. A dual display like the LG V10 has also been touted, as has dual rear cameras.

LG likes to make announcements early and it has already outed the X series smartphones. These mid-range devices pick out one hot feature, so if you want a great camera without the cost, the X cam will be for you. If you want a great display, the X screen will be for you.

READ MORE LG G5: What's the story so far?
Microsoft at MWC 2016

Microsoft has made a big move recently, shifting over to Windows 10 and aiming for a single platform strategy across all its hardware. The phone side of things has got off to a slightly rocky start. We're awaiting the update for legacy Windows Phone 8 devices for starters, and critical acclaim for Windows 10 (phone) hasn't been great.

Microsoft might be looking to expand its line-up of devices with a Lumia 650, an entry-level handset. And there have been recent murmurings about the possible arrival of a mid-range Lumia 750, perhaps even an 850, thanks to certification seemingly leaked from an official Chinese communications regulator. In addition, Surface Phone rumours still churn, but at the moment, we think that's wishful thinking.

READ MORE Microsoft Lumia 650 specs and design leak and Massive leak suggests Windows 10 Microsoft Lumia 750 is heading to MWC 2016, maybe a Lumia 850
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Samsung at MWC 2016

Samsung has confirmed that the next Samsung Galaxy will launch at MWC 2016, with an event scheduled for 21 February, the same day as LG for anyone not paying attention. That could see the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S7, the SGS7 edge and possibly the Galaxy S7 Plus, although the latter is less likely.

We might also see the launch of a new sport-focused wearable, based on the design of the Gear S2 smartwatch, but there's also a big hint dropped in the Samsung Unpacked 2016 teaser video, which shows Gear VR. Rumours have it that Samsung is going to announce a 360-degree camera, designed for capturing your VR content.



Sony Mobile at MWC 2016

The wheels of Sony's updating machine never seem to stop, but following the IFA 2015 launch of the Z5 family, we can't see that the company will dabble in the flagship space again so soon. Never say never though, this is Sony, after all. Sony has plans, however, as it's issued invites to an MWC 2016 press conference on the Monday.

The SmartWatch 3 is getting a little older, so perhaps MWC will see Sony skip smartphones and focus on wearable updates. Serial leaker Evan Blass claims Sony will be launching a "tiny, smart Bluetooth headset at MWC" but whether that will launch alongside other devices is unclear.

There could also possibly be an update in tablets: the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact is now 2 years old, or maybe we will see an update to the mid-range Xperia M handset. There's few rumours at present, although some are already talking about the Xperia Z6.

READ MORE Sony Xperia Z6: What's the story so far?
Qualcomm at MWC 2016

Qualcomm is expected to be pushing the message behind Snapdragon 820 in a big way at MWC 2016. We've already seen the first SD820 handset launched, the LeTV Le Max Pro, at CES 2016, but we expect a lot more talk about power and efficiency in the latest smartphones at MWC.

Then there's wearables. With Intel grabbing headlines through various wearable partnerships with the likes of Tag Heuer, New Balance and Fossil, Qualcomm will probably want to point out that it's powering a large number of Android Wear devices. It has announced a new chipset especially for wearables, Snapdragon Wear.
When is MWC 2016?

Mobile World Congress will be held on 22-25 February 2016, although the announcements usually come thick and fast before the show floor actually opens.

Usually the preceding Sunday is the big day to watch out for, so mark your calendars for 21 February, as that's when some of the big press launches take place.

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