All the Best New Gadgets We Saw at Mobile World Congress (MWC 2016) in Barcelona
Like every year, this year too saw an incredible line-up of smartphones, tablets and laptops at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. The trade show that officially started from February 22nd finally came to a close on the February 25th. This show also saw the debut of newcomers like Internet service companies, autonomous cars, and tons of startups.
Here’s our selection of products from the show that stood out in the MWC 2016.
LG made the boldest move at MWC, betting everything on G5 smartphone modularity. The modular design of G5 is arguably one of the more innovative ideas seen in recent years. The bottom of the all-metal phone can be popped out so that you can swap the battery pack or pop in another module. The G5 is also a high-spec phone that comes with Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chip processor, a 5.3-inch Quad HD LCD display, 4GB of RAM, expandable storage up to 200GB, 2,800mAh removable battery, fingerprint sensor and dual rear-facing 16 and 8MP cameras for taking wider shots. The new user interface looks great and is fast and fluid. Another module made with Bang & Olufsen provides high-res audio.
Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge
Samsung’s new head-turners are Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge that represent the best work Samsung has ever done. Samsung improved upon the S6 and S6 Edge in nearly every way with the S7 and S7 Edge. Not only are the phones are curvier at the front and back but also more comfortable to hold — especially the S7 Edge. What’s more, Sammy’s newest Edge-optimized software finally feels like it’s out of beta. The Edge panels are large and beautiful, as well as being versatile and open to third-party developers, which greatly expands its possibilities. Both the phones have an IP68 rating for water and dust resistance.
Further, both these phones support quick charging and wireless charging and the phones even come with a free Gear VR. Samsung has also brought back the microSD slot and improved battery life that fans surely will be glad about. In addition, it comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, sharp Quad HD screens, improved Edge functionality, and an outstanding 16-megapixel camera for low-light pictures. The company also debuted a camera that people can use to capture 360-degree video, which can be edited directly on the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge.
Xiaomi Mi 5 Pro
Xiaomi’s Mi 5 Pro is a very impressive phone, which looks like a mix of the OnePlus X and the Galaxy S7 with its metal frame and curved glass or ceramic back. It’s remarkably light and looks sleek and sexy. It features a 5.15-inch Full HD display, Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 820 processor clocked at 2.15GHz, 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, 128GB of in-built storage and a fingerprint sensor on the front of the device – a first for Xiaomi. It also sports a 16MP Sony IMX298 sensor on the rear and a 4MP camera sensor on the front. It also runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow with Xiaomi’s MIUI 7, and will also receive weekly software updates. The best part of this device is the price, which is a real steal at $360 without sales tax, or $410 as a direct conversion. However, the device is available only in China for now.
Hands down, Huawei’s MateBook convertible 2-in-1 tablet PC was the best Windows 10 at the show. MateBook is an incredibly slim, mobile-first tablet with a 12-inch screen. Its sleek aluminum body feels sturdy and seamless. Powered by Intel’s 6th-generation Core M processors, it sports a Quad HD, 12-inch screen with a 2,160 × 1,440 pixel resolution and an 84 percent screen-to-body ratio. It comes with 4GB or 8GB of RAM, along with an SSD up to 512GB in size, so that you do not run out of space. The keyboard folio, which is a mere 6.9mm in thickness folds right up effortlessly and the stylus is quite cool. It has a laser pointer on one end and two dedicated buttons for controls. Huawei also made a dock for the MateBook with several ports for added connections. It has also used its special heat dissipation technology to create a fanless design. While Huawei declined to put a camera on the back of the tablet, but it did pop a 5-megapixel camera on the front.
Sony Xperia X Series
Sony has killed off its Xperia Z-series of flagship phones and replaced it with a new X range, Xperia X, Xperia X Performance and Sony Xperia XA . These three new Xperia X phones look sharp with aluminium bodies in metallic finishes. The X Performance is the most high-end one with its Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor and 3GB of RAM, 5-inch 1080p screen, and 32GB of storage. The X has a Snapdragon 615 chip instead, but that’s the only difference. The XA is more low-end with a 720p screen, MediaTek Helio MT6755 processor, and 2GB of RAM.
All three new Xperia X smartphones run Android 6.0 Marshmallow with company’s UI on top and come in single and dual-SIM models. The Xperia X and XA are notably lower in specification than the S7 and G5, but they each boast a 23Mp camera – and photography is an area in which Sony excels. All three will be available worldwide, including the U.S. However, there is no word on the pricing yet.