Samsung, Microsoft, Qualcomm, LG Dominating MWC 2015 - InformationWeek

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2/28/2015
11:05 AM
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Samsung, Microsoft, Qualcomm, LG Dominating MWC 2015

On March 2, Mobile World Congress will kick off, with announcements from Samsung, Microsoft, Qualcomm, HTC, and LG expected to take center stage.

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Mobile World Congress 2015 is shaping up to be a busy week full of exciting news and announcements. The show, held in Barcelona, Spain, is the biggest mobile-focused event in the world and is expected to draw more than 70,000 attendees from around the globe. The show floor may not open until Monday, March 2, but the event gets under way Sunday afternoon with nearly a dozen press conferences lined up.

This year will see major announcements from the likes of Samsung, Microsoft, Qualcomm, Intel, HTC, and many others. Much of the news will be concentrated on Sunday and Monday, which is when most of the major mobile announcements are scheduled. Here's a rundown on what to expect from the world's leading tech firms:

  • LG is hosting a small event the afternoon of Sunday, March 1, (7 a.m. EST) where it is expected to show off the LG Watch Urbane and Watch Urbane LTE for the first time. LG recently announced a new series of midrange smartphones, and those will be on site as well. It doesn't look like LG has a new phone in the works for MWC.
  • Huawei is holding an event at the same time as LG. It is not expected to announce a new smartphone, but the company does have an Android tablet and a wearable prepped for a Barcelona debut.
  • HTC and Alcatel OneTouch are both hosting events Sunday afternoon (10 a.m. EST), too. HTC is widely believed to be announcing the One M9, its flagship smartphone for the year. The device leaked earlier this week, so mobile watchers already have a good idea of what to expect. HTC teased that it has more than just a phone up its sleeve, so observers will have to wait and see what else the company has planned. Alcatel will surely have something to say, but there have been no solid leaks about the company's plans just yet.
  • Mozilla is also hosting an event Sunday evening (11 a.m. EST). The company will have a handful of Firefox devices on hand, including some new smartphones and maybe even a tablet. Mozilla's Firefox OS hasn't quite caught on yet, but it has a small toehold in a few countries.

Samsung will cap off Sunday's activities with the Galaxy S6, its flagship smartphone for 2015. Rumors about the device and its capabilities have been off the charts, as Samsung seeks a comeback hit with which to battle Apple. The GS6 will be big, will include cutting edge features, and should have a fresh face when compared to Samsung's GS5 and GS4 handsets. Notably, it may come with a curved screen, like the Galaxy Note Edge from last year. Samsung's event is planned for Sunday evening in Barcelona (12:30 p.m. EST).

Monday won't see any many phones, but will see lots from other players in the ecosystem.

Microsoft and Qualcomm have early morning announcements on deck (2:30 a.m. EST).

Microsoft will be talking more about Windows 10 for smartphones and may show off some new hardware, but that will be limited to low-end models. Microsoft is likely holding back on announcing a Windows 10 flagship smartphone -- something it's sorely lacking at the moment -- until its Build developer conference, scheduled for early May.

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Qualcomm will be talking about its mobile processors and LTE modems. It may reveal the Snapdragon 820, which is believed to be its first custom-made 64-bit application processor.

As far as chipmakers go, Intel and MediaTek have announcements on deck as well. Neither company has events scheduled, but their teams have made it clear that news is forthcoming. Intel may be looking at a refresh of its mobile processor lineup for 2015.

[ Read about Apple's March 9 event.]

Visa is closing out Monday's activities (10 a.m. EST). The company has been pushing into the mobile payment space hard, and should have new partnerships to talk about.

Believe it or not, BlackBerry is kicking things off in Barcelona on Tuesday (2 a.m. EST). The subject up for discussion at its breakfast event is likely to focus on its enterprise software efforts and not new hardware. However, some rumors have suggested it will reveal a modified version of its Passport smartphone.

Sony doesn't have an event scheduled for MWC this year, but it is widely believed to be revealing the Xperia Z4 tablet at some point during the week. Kyocera will also have new hardware to show off, though it may not be stuff for the US.

Chinese vendors Xiaomi, Asus, ZTE, and Meizu have been fairly quiet ahead of the event, as has Lenovo. These companies likely won't have much to say.

Mobile World Congress 2015 is promising an avalanche of news and announcements. InformationWeek.com will be on site to provide live coverage.

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Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio

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nasimson
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nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 11:26:36 AM
Apple missing
So Apple has continued its tradition set by Steve Jobs to stay away from MWC. So 30% of the world Smart phone and tablet market will not be there. But the other 70% would be.
Ashu001
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Ashu001,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 1:00:40 PM
Re: Apple missing
Nasimson,

Its true that Apple is a big-big player in the Smartphone and Tablet space;but they are'nt the only one there.

As long as Samsung,LG,MSFT,Quacomm are involved with MWC it will continue to be extremely relevant and Big-big news in the Telecom Space.

Especially at the Bottom of the Pyramid(where majority of the Growth is going to come from going ahead);these Players(especially after MSFT decided to partner with some Asian OEMs to give away Windows Mobile for Free there) are going to matter more-Much,much more.

 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:02:08 PM
Re: Apple missing
@Ashu001- We still have apple devices on the market because of their brand perception and the sleek design. Today we see other brands using the same technique to market their products. 
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 3:44:56 PM
Re: Apple missing
@nasimson,

You make a very valid point.... but maybe this is specifically Apple's strategy.

And actually...that's a good strategy to see what competitors are doing, and take your time to do the R&D to be able to answer/provide comebacks

What's amazing is that even though Apple is absent from this events, it's still dominant in many areas. It's market share may not be the biggest, but it's reputation is impecable.
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 9:53:16 PM
Re: Apple missing
@nasimson- Does that mean Steve Jobs was not an important character in the smartphone industry?
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:18:20 PM
Re: Apple missing
@nasimson- I think Apple should now change the way they think. They should join hands with Google to have android apps on their smartphones too.  
nasimson
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nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 11:33:45 AM
RIM is still living in a different world
Blackberry still expected to showcase another passport! No Please. The world does not want another BB device. But perhaps RIM is still living in a different world.
Ashu001
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Ashu001,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 1:06:46 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
Nasimson,

If you actually look at Blackberry's Strategies going ahead you will be quite surprised especially their Intense focus on Services and Secure Software(where they remain very,very good).

Its true that their Handsets are'nt that great but a lot of Executives continue to swear by them(you will be surprised).

BBM is'nt quite dead yet.

Not Yet.

 
nasimson
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nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 1:23:23 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@Ashu: BBM not quite dead yet!? Really. Didnt Whats App for BB killed whatever was left of BBM.
Ashu001
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Ashu001,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 1:38:16 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
Nasimson,

Not yet.

As Long as there remains a market for Extremely Secure Communication Handsets -Blackberries will continue to survive.

No one else(amongst the Major Manufacturer's comes even close).

 
nasimson
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nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 5:55:13 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@Ashu: RIM'S perceived security is more than actual security. In almost all countries, it has provided LI legal Intercepts to government and agencies.
tzubair
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tzubair,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 8:14:58 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
"RIM'S perceived security is more than actual security. In almost all countries, it has provided LI legal Intercepts to government and agencies."

@Nasimon: Despite their superior security, it is interesting to see how RIMS wasn't able to survive for a very long time in the market because of security alone. Meanwhile, Android, which is much less secure, is far more succesful. Perhaps security is overrated.
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 9:57:48 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@nasimson- I liked RIM's approach to bring in android apps to Blackberry 10 devices. They should have done this few years back.
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:28:59 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
"RIM'S perceived security is more than actual security. In almost all countries, it has provided LI legal Intercepts to government and agencies."

@nasimson- This is shocking news for me. Would you have a link to an article to study more about this. 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:21:41 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@Ashu001-I too believe that Blackberry will be in existence among the executives. It's much secure to use a Blackberry than using any other device. 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:14:12 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@nasimson- What really happened with WatsApp for Blackberry? I see Blackberry has integrated Glympse with BBM to share live location (updates every few seconds) with BBM users. 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:05:39 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@Ashu001- I have to agree with you on this, Blackberry is still doing very good on the security aspect. That's one good reason we still see Blackberry among some cooperates. 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:08:40 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@Ashu001- I still love the Blackberry QWERTY keyboard, I could simply close my eyes and draft a mail. Blackberry has created a professional image among their users. 
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 9:55:31 PM
Re: RIM is still living in a different world
@nasimson- I was happy to see Blackberry 10 devices on the market, but it didn't turn out as good as I expected. Blackberry has been in their dream world for years and now it's hard to recover. 
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 3:51:04 PM
Trying to hard?
Not sure if it's only me, but from Samsung what I see when they launch one or two (or three) phones in a year is more of a desperate effort than actual ingenuity.

It feels they're trying to cramp every possible feature that would pls consumers, yet not really deliver in a good overall experience, specifically refering that even though Samsung phones have every bell and whistle imaginable, it's still running Android, meaning it's still sharing the same pool as many other competitors.

Don't get me wrong...I love Android (have a Nexus 7 and absolutly love it), but when it comes to OS, I find both iOS and Windows Phone to be more polished, fluid.

And the thing is... whatever Samsuing enviels, it'll only be in peoples mind for three or six months, and then the next guy will have the same feature but with less fat.

Both Windows Phone and iOS keep things well integrated, meaning that the experience will go beyond the first month of use (this at least has been my experience).
tzubair
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tzubair,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 8:00:53 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
 

"Don't get me wrong...I love Android (have a Nexus 7 and absolutly love it), but when it comes to OS, I find both iOS and Windows Phone to be more polished, fluid."

 

@mejiac: I think this trade-off has always been there. While Andrioid is less stable and does have bugs, it is also less restrictive and gives more freedom to the users. Most users would appreciate that. I know many people who feel frustrated at how there are so little options in iOS compared to Android.
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:31:23 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@tzubair – That all depends on the individuals requirement. If you play games and try out apps then Andoid would be ideal. If you are into business and official work Blackberry would be great.  
nasimson
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nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 9:35:43 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@mejiac: Samsung comes preloaded with bloatware: some crappy apps that you never use, but these still take up space, computing power and bandwidth. The result is a crappy experience after a few months of purhase.
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:33:40 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
"Samsung comes preloaded with bloatware: some crappy apps that you never use, but these still take up space, computing power and bandwidth. The result is a crappy experience after a few months of purhase."

 @nasimson – You could uninstall these apps by rooting your device. Else you could uninstall app updates and disable the app from the App manager on Android. This will help you have a faster device. 
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 11:51:25 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@shakeeb Yes, that's a work around, but it beats the purpose... If I purchas a phone only to have to make changes straight out of the box than that's a flaw.
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
3/1/2015 | 11:49:12 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@shakeeb - I try to avoid all this problems by using simple Nokia with idea phone as phone and nothing else :)
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
3/1/2015 | 11:49:12 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@shakeeb - I try to avoid all this problems by using simple Nokia with idea phone as phone and nothing else :)
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
3/3/2015 | 2:29:50 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
You could uninstall these apps by rooting your device. Else you could uninstall app updates and disable the app from the App manager on Android. This will help you have a faster device.

Rooting? I'm certain that's not doable for most users.
We might have different systems, because even though you can uninstall updates, there's no way that you can disable an app from App Manager, at least not in my phone.
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 11:49:50 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@nasimson Agreed, and I think this is one if the many reasons that Samsung and others keep struggling versus focusing in real innovation
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
3/1/2015 | 11:39:11 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@mejiac Samsung  is keep upgrading it line and it like never ending process... how I see it...
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
3/2/2015 | 12:34:52 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@batye,

Thank you for your comment,

I have no issues with a company constantly seeking to provide updates to it's line of products. But with Samsung, it's at the hardware level, meaning that you'll need to upgrade each time a new iteration is available (which is about every 6 months).

I think that at the end is about preference, but I myself consider that a device should have a decent lifespan before becoming obsolute
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
3/2/2015 | 9:51:17 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@mejiac it almost like addiction to upgrade... never ending addiction... how I see it...
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
3/4/2015 | 1:27:21 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@batye- I think the upgrade addiction will slow after a little while. Remember when you used to have to buy a new PC ever year or two to stay current? And that slowed down. Mobile hardware will slowdown, too. And for apps, people will slowly begin to realize all of these tiny patches are expensive and will hold off for bigger patches when the hardware slows down.
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
3/5/2015 | 11:33:18 AM
Re: Trying to hard?
@Dave, yes you are right, but I would like to add many co. do try to keep going upgrade addiction at any way possible... same as gaming pc manf... bottom line end game = proofit ...
shakeeb
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shakeeb,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 10:27:21 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@mejiac- Almost every person you meet has an android smartphone with much similar features. Today we see many cheap devices from China running on Android. 
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
2/28/2015 | 11:53:15 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@shakeeb Agreed, amd this is ome of the main reasons there's much competition, which favors consumers
glenbren
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glenbren,
User Rank: Ninja
3/1/2015 | 1:47:45 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
Aren't we really just buying the names? How much difference is there between all these phones?
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
3/1/2015 | 11:35:12 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
interesting point, but I would like to add probability of no name of carry spyware/trojan or virus inside OS build in by design is very high... but this days you never know...
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
3/2/2015 | 12:31:41 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@glenbren,

I think this is a very important question, and one that most providers struggle to answer, since they have to show off bells and whistles to be able to say why they are different from the other.

Both Windows Phones and iPhones provide a very consistent user experience. And even for windows there's a big difference between each type of devices (some are for entry level consumptions, others for enthusiast), but with Android, it seems like a very crowded environment with very little to show off (aside from that one or two "killer" feature).

So I agree with your statement. It's basically the same device but with a different presentation.
glenbren
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glenbren,
User Rank: Ninja
3/2/2015 | 1:34:02 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
I did not realize that Windows phones had such different variations. I was under the impression that iPhones were not that different from version to version, at least any more so than Androids.
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
3/2/2015 | 2:09:11 PM
Re: Trying to hard?
@glenbren,

With IPhones, it's a pretty good life cylce, since even though there's a new device on a yearly basis, prior devices are still both backward compatible and still have the hardware to last for a couple of years (the IPHone 4S is a good experience of lasting well beyond the normal expectation)

With windows phone, yes, some are high lend with very distinct features (like profesional camera capabilities) and others are aimed at entry level users/low cost.

Androids to provide a good low cost entry, but there really isn't a defacto high end version since each provider has there own take on what is considered "high end". (aside from processor and screen capabilities)
Li Tan
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Li Tan,
User Rank: Ninja
3/2/2015 | 9:03:54 AM
Re: Trying to hard?
To me this does not sound good, either. As all the other security areas, as long as you have the interface available, then it will always be abused in the end. How can we guarantee that LI is only used for legal purpose?
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