While the Mobile World Congress, as it is called, may sound like an event only for mobile phones, there are several innovations that are not smartphone-related released at this annual event as well. However, most of these innovations may have some relevance to the smartphone’s ecosystem. Here’s a look at some them.
Microsoft HoloLens 2 -Headset from Microsoft
While Microsoft’s presence in the smartphone market is nearly negligible, this offering of a second-generation mixed reality headset by the company at the MWC 2019 drew a lot of attention at Barcelona. The device comes with an eye-tracking feature that should make the users gain immersive experience. The current indications, however, are that the device might be positioned as an enterprise version. Another product that Microsoft unveiled at the MWC 2019 Azure Kinect Developer Kit. This is described as all-in-one sensor module and is seen to be a tool to help develop apps in the AR and VR space.
LG’s Innovative Phone Case
LG did release a couple of devices with 5G capability, but it did not include a foldable phone like Samsung or the other smartphone makers did. Instead the company showcased a unique phone case that doubles as a secondary display meant to be attached to the 5G enabled LG V50 ThinQ smartphone. This is basically a secondary 6.2-inch screen having its own battery support as well. The only negative aspect with this attachment is it ramps up the thickness of the phone.
The Nubia Alpha smart wearable
Observers recall that the Chinese brand Nubia is invariably around at the MWC each year and 2019 was no exception. Some would however call it a phone only since it comes with almost all functions that a smartphone has. The device looks more like a wrist band as well covering half of the wrist. The innovative aspect of this smartwatch is the 5MP camera lens fitted on it and has gesture control features. It is understood that the device may be sold in limited markets like Europe and North America and its price has been indicated to be around $510.
The Energizer Power Max 18K Pop battery cum phone
This was another product that had everyone sitting up and taking notice. The battery company says its phone can last up to one week with a single charge under normal usage or 2 continuous days of video playback on it. The question on everyone’s mind is how thick the phone-brick would turn out to be and will it fit into the normal pockets.
Image source: Mincu Andrei via Twitter
HTC 5G Hub
This Hub acts as a central portal for all your devices to connect to the superfast next-generation 5G networks. It has been designed to replace existing home routers and can act as a mobile hotspot for up to 20 users. The hub comes with a 5-inch HD screen that allows users to monitor their data usage and speed of their connections. The hub can also stream 4K videos to a second screen with no drop off in quality. While the price is yet to be revealed, this device is expected to go on sale in a few months.
Huawei Matebook X Pro
Quite similar to the MateBook X Pro released by the company last year, new laptop comes with a 13.9-inch, 450 nit, edge-to-edge 3000 x 2000 pixel touchscreen, full size keyboard, a fingerprint scanner embedded in the power button. Huawei says that the new Thunderbolt port, which has been upgraded to a full four lanes of bandwidth, is capable of supporting external GPUs like Nvidia’s RTX2080.
It comes with two processor options: Core i5-8265U and Core i7-8565U. Huawei claims these are 10% faster than last year’s version. The X Pro comes in two variants: 8GB and 16GB of RAM with internal storage being between 256GB and 1TB. And as against last year’s MX150 GPU, the new laptop’s Core i7 version comes with Nvidia’s MX250 discrete graphics.
Among the other gadgets/devices/technologies spotted at the MWC 2019 include:
- A 1TB microSD card
- Even the automobiles infotainment system can be calibrated to work on the 5G network. The “5G in-car entertainment system” was unveiled at the MWC 2019
- BMW’s in-car dashboard system that maps the cockpit in 3D space is another one worth mentioning.