Media fawning over concepts, but consumers untouched
MWC could be seen as the mobile industry's equivalent to the consumer technology association's CES booth. Just as Apple maintained its advertising on CES for fifteen years, the iPhone manufacturer has done the same to MWC over the past decade, despite Apple's original position as a foreign mobile maker among solidly established ones.
While competitors have consistently advertised ideas First, Apple is unique in being able to properly imagine what customers want and develop actual work, ready-made ideas, as it can then send and, most importantly, sell to buyers in significant volumes.
Other companies, especially Samsung, had shown promising ideas about their own grand visions, but have not had much success in selling these concepts. Overall, MWC vendors have outlined a wide range of ideas that come into the prize space, but have largely been able to continue their miserable, unprofitable cycles by selling lower, largely unimaginable commodity products.
To clarify how likely it is that today's MWC announcements will have any real impact on Apple's operation or market position, take a look at Apple's past ten years, just climbing the full spectrum of the mobile industry. This is in spite of years after years of MWC announcements that encouraged the media, but have not had much commercial or cultural impact at all.
MWC 2010: Many Promising Ideas Broken by IOS
In 2010, MWC officially honored Steve Jobs as its "mobile industry personality of the year." Apple was nowhere to be seen on the February fair. Instead, Jobs introduced Apple's then-new iPad at its own event in January.
Pundits had crapped the entire iPad on his 2010 discovery. Previously, I was interviewed by technical outlets that never published my interview because it didn't fit the story they worked to create – they just wanted to hear opinions about why the iPad would fail.
Yet, just weeks later, the same media sources were breathless to fantasize about the possibilities of a number of things shown at MWC 2010, which today are remembered as hilariously condemned.
These included Microsoft's final shipping Windows Phone 7 an attempt to rival Apple's iPhone, about three years late. "Every Windows Phone 7 device is a Zune," PC World noted at that time, with no apparent awareness of the irony.
To the world outside Apple, Microsoft's MP3 game Zune was not yet a failure, and Windows Phone 7 would definitely be great. The same logic was never used to explain that Apple's iPod sales were not shrinking, but actually grew like iPhones became a new more premium level of "Widescreen iPods."
Pundits painted success as failure and failed as a success.
Beyond Microsoft, Google Android finally became a mass market for phone manufacturers. Still, as with the short and tortured existence of WP7, Apple's IOS was about to kill the rest of Android's original originality .
At that time, Android was still a strange experiment that stuck between the original design created by Google's one-button phone with a trackball for navigation and its ultimate fate as being little more than a means of knockoff surface design. of Apple's iPhones.
After iPhone, Google's Android attempted to launch original ideas, such as the HTC G1's trackball. Each of these was later incrementally removed to look more like an iPhone
At WMC 2010, HTC showed their Android Legend phone using an optical trackpad instead of the physical trackball that Google had come up with for its own PC-like alternative to multitouch navigation on the previous HTC Dream (aka Tmobile G1). It was later removed as well.
A few years later, Google fans said that Androids looked like iPhones simply because there is only one way to make a phone, the iPhone X changed one design dramatically, and Androids all jumped to copy it,
Another dead end trend visible at MWC 2010: mini-smartphones seen on HTC's HD mini and Palm Pixi Plus, as well as small phones previously tried by Nokia and Samsung. . All this sent pundits to an exciting clamoring for several small phones. Why wasn't Apple making an iPhone mini? This was later answered when mini-phones failed to sell.
Another great exciting trend from MWC 2010 that is now forgotten story: the idea that Android licensees had "the freedom" to meet their own innovative proprietary user interfaces and behaviors at the top of the Android foundation. Google once spied this as a feature of the platform before replacing gears to advertise their own Nexus phones as "clean", removed by the unpleasant crap licenses, destroyed their products.
Motorola showed phones with MotoBlur UI, while HTC showed wishes, effectively a Google One with HTC's own Sense UI on it. Sony Ericsson launched new Android and Symbian phones at MWC 2010, both with retractable physical keyboards which meant that Android was interesting and fostered innovation, but really just confused users and fragmented their experience.
No one is thinking of spending anymore. At that time, these were considered a feature lacking Apple. Were Android licensed for weak or incompetent to get their ideas fixed, or was Apple just right with their design decisions? It is hard to say.
Another noteworthy idea from a decade ago: Samsung used MWC 2010 to create a "splashy" launch of Bada OS on its Wave handset, just as Android started taking off. Bada was Samsung's new Linux-based operating system that has since gone nowhere but was meant to release Samsung from Google's control over Android. Why was Samsung already itching to leave Android?
"Very confidential" internal documents that were revealed during Samsung's iPhone copycat trial showed that Samsung was concerned about competitive threats in Google's collaboration with HTC and the acquisition of Motorola.
In parallel, mobile giant Nokia and chipzilla Intel presented MeeGo at MWC 2010, their own Mobile Linux project to compete with Android and iPhones.
Samsung's Bada initiative failed, making Google's partnership with HTC and its acquisition of Motorola, and Intel and Nokia's MeeGo. Anyway, the pundits were desperately concerned with how Apple could be in business when they met the coordinated alliance of Android partners who all marched in lock to kill the iPhone.
The reality was that Google and its Android licensed all were desperately paranoid and incompetent, plotted against each other and working for intent. Do media members have no idea that this happened, or did they cover it all up to create the illusion that Android is a world-leading, unified Apple competitor? Again, it is very difficult to tell whether they were ignorant or stupid.
A final idea from 2010 that sounds like a modern fantasy: think of a light, thin notebook that runs on a Snapdragon ARM chip, with integrated mobile data and an OLED touch screen. That was what HP Compaq debuted in 2010 under the AirLife brand, as it called a smartbook .
HP's Android-based AirLife was choked partly by Google's opposition
Participants were happy about this Android online book, but it was not yet shipping and it was not yet priced. No one is using AirLife smartbooks today, and HP has not turned the introduction of Apple's iPad very well.
In fact, within a few months, HP would buy Palm for its webOS and start its own attempt to beat the iPad using the new platform. That step doubts the future of HP's Android phones and tablets, including AirLife.
Interestingly, Davide Dicenso, member of HP's Emerging Platforms Group who created AirLife, noted that there was a conflict between HP and Google over the design. This led HP to attempt to develop webOS as its own platform, independent of Google.
Although Google seemed to be open to licensed users with Android in new ways, Dicenso noted that Google was not "happy with the form factor, [which was] for different from a phone the Android OS was perceived. The result? We still sent , but without Google's app store, G Suite and some support for Google's services. "
Take up what I am laying down
Over the next decade, these topics of conflicting assertion, poorly spoken failed concepts, and ideological dogma held resurfacing at MWC. It bamboozled the participants with products that would never do anything to make big demands on the future that should not go out.
Oddly, at the same time, Apple kept introducing incredibly successful new products on a regular clip. By 2010, Apple in 2010 did not launch the only change in the iPad strategy, more bad navigation experiments, a mini-phone or a smartbook, although it increased Mac sales by 30 percent. It then introduced the all-new design of the iPhone 4 and the new iOS-based Apple TV.
And yet, the technology industry's ideas continued that Apple had a lack of innovation while the products were sold at prices that were just too high to make any meaningful difference in the market. This has been solid every year for ten years.
MWC 2011: Android everywhere, albeit on fire
In 2011, Apple again launched the iPad 2 in January, before the MWC, which was increasingly taken over by Google. Motorola, which Google will later acquire, showed a series of products, including Xoom, Motorola's official Android 3.0 Honeycomb response to Apple's iPad.
Motorola's pretentious ad for Xoom portrayed it as a joyful entity that made the world better, rather than arrogantly overpriced and sloppily unfinished
A recipe written by Telegraph noted that Google CEO Eric Schmidt delivered a MWC keynote speech in which he appeared Xoom's new movie editor,
Xoom was priced higher than Apple's iPad, but Motorola was sure it would sell because it had more features including the ability to connect to 4G networks.
Beyond Xoom – which would go down as one of the worst tablet failures ever hyped in the stratosphere with an incredible level of arrogance – Motorola also showed its new Atrix phone boasting 4G, a fingerprint sensor, and a dock connector that Turned it into the brain of a netbook-like device running a Ubuntu Linux-based desktop – all the features that Apple's iPhone lacked.
Motorola Atrix 4G, anchored to display a Linux desktop
Just years later, the iPhone got 4G support and Touch ID, which ended up with great features that ran high volume sales. Why didn't Atrix sell better? In part, the fingerprint sensor was not safe or reliable and ended up not being supported during the year, partly because Google bought Motorola and dropped support for it. 4G mobile service, while very fast, had limited coverage and the early chip sets experienced significant drawbacks, including battery life and a larger case.
Despite commercial errors, "features" of Xoom and Atrix were wavy with large distractions, including media reports that included the important ability to run Adobe Flash content under Android Froyo, another thing iPhones couldn't do.
Continued coverage of Schmidt's MWC keynote, Telegraph stated, "but more than that, he spoke almost poetically about a world, enabled by computers, where people are" Not lost, never lonely, bored never. & # 39; A little strange expert consultants Accenture is talking about a new phenomenon: "Android everywhere." "
There was not so much" new phenomenon: "as there was a follow-up to Microsoft's" Windows Everywhere "marketing in the 1990s. And, in particular, the idea that the Windows code one day would require everyone's office equipment and home appliances already had failed in an ocean of incompatibilities, competitive claim and security lapses, Accenture was asked the question of how Android should do the same, somehow with different consequences.
Ten years later, Android is not "everywhere". is really only on smartphones. On netbooks, TVs, game consoles, tablets and other places, even Google uses code that is not Android, and Google's top license, despite the fact that they are unable to establish strong platforms, is still trying to do so, from Samsung's Tizen SmartTVs and Gear watches and elsewhere.
Also in 2011, LG showed a 3D tablet and HP launched the TouchPad, based on the webOS platform it purchased through P When you look at the overall performance of the entire consumer technology industry outside Apple, it is really quite difficult to understand how the Pundits continued to twist their innovation finger at the Mac manufacturer while praising the vaporware and dud factories around it.
MWC 2012: Samsung ascendent
The crucial story that Samsung found out phablet is a little less than accurate. Since then Samsung threw out everything it could prototype: big tablets, small tablets, big phones and small phones like Galaxy Mini 2.
MWC 2012 awarded its best smartphone price to Samsung's Galaxy SII, The closest copy of an iPhone as some had dared to make. The best tablet went to Apple's iPad 2, which was still a no-show at the event.
Samsung had no idea what people wanted. It told participants that there was also planning (as well as last year's Bada and continued efforts with Android) to roll out Windows Phone 8 models and Windows 8 tablets. There are many platforms to support.
Two years after taking on the iPad, Dan Grabham noted for TechRadar that at MWC 2012 "a Samsung spokesman also entered a piece that he said the company did not do so well in tablets , which the company later seemed to remove. "
LG still pushed a 3D smartphone with Optimus 3D. Nokia showed its Windows Phone with a PureView camera that designated a 41MP sensor. These features have media attention, but have never resulted in market operations.
Huawei was touting what it claimed was the fastest mobile chips: a smartphone powered by its custom K3V2 and a MediaPad tablet that runs a custom developed K3. Yet seven years later, Huawei is today positioned by the media, as if it were a new startup entering the market with advanced new processor technologies right from the Communist Party laboratories, rather than being a company that has existed forever and like everyone else. Android licensee could not sell its high-end devices, forcing it to focus on cheap, profitable commodities.
This error is being rebranded as winning because Huawei now serves the largest number of people looking for a cheap handset. But more importantly, the volume of cheap hardware has not created economies of scale that are capable of producing affordable, high-end processors that Apple has.
Seven years later, Huawei's new Kirin 980 is not only behind Apple's A12 Bionic, it also struggles to keep up with last year's A11
Today, Apple's A12 Bionic is in its latest iPhone and iPad Pro models years ahead Huawei as well as being years ahead of Qualcomm, another company that used to have a good leadership in mobile chip technology.
MWC 2013: The Exciting World of Tablet Phones
In 2013, The Verge summed up the MWC with the grammatical error source: "It's a crazy world, one where 8-inch slate can make phone calls and 5-inch slate is the new home for 1080p full HD. "
The site was particularly excited about the Windows Phone on Nokia, but unfortunately observed" Nokia's Windows Phone series is complete, now it's up to Microsoft. " Also, Nokia tried to compete with Microsoft Surface in the Windows tablet market.
It also celebrated Firefox OS, Asus Padfone, Nvidia's Tegra 4 chip and HP's Slate 7 Android tablet, all of which went nowhere. HP had given up on webOS and sold it to LG, but moved back to Android did not turn blackboard out.
MWC 2014: nascent wearables before Apple Watch
In 2014, PCMag tried to breathe some interest in the MWC by observing, "if you think there is nothing exciting to find out in mobile technology , you haven't seen anything yet. From online privacy and OLED displays to wearables and tactile touch screens, there's plenty of innovation at MWC. "
Its top pick was the Yotaphone, which had" a 5-inch 1080p AMOLED display on one side, and a 4.7-inch, 960-by-540 E-ink display on the other "and Blackphone, a" handset that puts security first and foremost – including your lyrics, phone calls and local storage , thanks to the purpose-built PrivateOS building at the top of Android. "
You can't use Blackphone for email or run any Android apps, or it would be as spyware as other Android drippers with Google's custom and voluntary surveillance advertising architecture.
HP swap platforms again to market their Pavilion X360, a convertible Windows 8.1 slate tablet / clamshell laptop.
But the real news of the show was durable, including Samsung's Tizen-powered Gear Fit, a bracelet design that "releases the rest of the Galaxy Gears gimmicks, like phone calls and the built-in camera."
PCMag also noted that "Huawei enters the training device with TalkBand B1, a combination wrist activity tracking and Bluetooth headset that lets you answer phone calls" while "Sony SmartBand SWR10 is the company's most compelling one. It combines an activity tracking, sleep tracker, and what Sony calls a life logger in. "
At the end of 2014, Apple showed its new Apple Watch, which was sold next spring. Despite the fact that dog chatter tried to reduce their prospects, Apple definitely ruined the market for premium wearables, so rivals again spent their time building low-margin, low-end devices that didn't really leave users happy and later had no real market impact.
MWC 2015: No Apple on the VR Party
A report by TechRadar covering MWC 2015, portrayed participants as striving to retrieve Apple at the premium level.
Writing about Samsung's Galaxy 6S, said the website ", as Apple has proven over the years, premium design can go a long way in determining a smartphone's success, and the Galaxy S6's front and rear glass panels, combined with metal unibody, have hit complaint. "
Samsung has also rolled out its own Samsung Pay that is competing with Google's Android Pay to challenge Apple Pay. But after using various events to exploit their Gear smart watches, Samsung bent out of the smartwatches at MWC to wait for the launch of Apple Watch. Instead, it focused its attention on the Gear VR, a way to experience binocular immersive images using a head-mounted smartphone.
HTC also worked to compete Apple's iPhone prize with One M9 with a metal look and feel, and launched its own HTC Vive VR headset.
Microsoft continued pushing Lumia and the new Windows 10 Mobile, which looked countless as something more likely.
Ubuntu's mobile Linux-based operating system was picked up by Chinese decision makers who wanted an alternative to Android, including Meizu MX4. TechRadar discovered optimistically, "there aren't many apps for it, there are even fewer phones running it and the software itself is buggy. But it's hard to deny that it shows promise."
LG, which had purchased webOS from HP 2013, used its new software to launch its Urban Smartwatch. Huawei launched its own Android Wear watch, and Pebble launched its own new wearable, of which TechRadar said, "Apple Watch can have a competitor on their hands."
When Apple Watch launched a few days later on Apple's March 9 "Spring Forward" event, it ended up not having any competitors on their hands.
Pebble's wearable was described as "perhaps" being a competitor to the upcoming Apple Watch
MWC 2016: VR blows up, burns down
The following year, TechRadar observed, "Samsung has managed to trust the MWC show over the past two years, launched the Galaxy S5 and Galaxy S6 in 2014 and 2015, respectively. This year it has not been different, with the smartphone giant launched both the S7 and S7 Edge (part of the press conference in virtual reality), and surprise us with a look from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. "
It added:" Not only did Zuck explain why VR is the next social platform, but he also announced that Facebook would bring many more apps to Gear VR He also confirmed the launch of Minecraft on the platform. "Facebook's VR partnership with Samsung did not move the needle
While the partnership between Facebook and Samsung was hyped up, a promised new world of VR did not deliver social networking rk. Instead, at the end of the year, Samsung dropped its Galaxy Note 7 battery basin so badly that the entire Gear VR headset strategy was cast in doubt. And no one except media personalities seemed interested in VR for more than 15 minutes anyway.
On the same show, LG announced its G5, with an internal expansion field to make it "modular". It was a total flop. It is also connected to VR. Google, HTC, Microsoft and Sony also invested heavily in VR, but despite all their combination, VR ended in 2016 described as the biggest loser of the year.
While the entire industry failed to deliver on VR hardware hype, Apple launched its own successful Apple Watch foray in wearables, while touting expanded reality as a greater opportunity. Pounds did not predict any outcome.
MWC 2017: Nostalgia for the time before Apple
In 2017, CNET gave an overview of MWC describing a trip "back to the drawing board" with nostalgic designs. Some phones from "Nokia" turned the once significant mobile maker into a licensed brand that was hit on existing products, the same type of humiliation that Polaroid and Atari had.
Blackberry presented its retro design of KeyOne, and Lenovo rebuilt the Moto brand it purchased from Google. Samsung did not take the Galaxy S8 to the show, instead chose to launch it on its own, Apple style. However, protesters interrupted Samsung's press conference to claim Samsung's plans for millions of recalled Note 7 batteries.
The report noted that "VR was everywhere on last year's show, but this year saw more emphasis on content and less on hardware", and also added that "a bunch of companies have come out and said they will push to Get 5G here for mass deployment by 2019 a year before the plan. "
This push was driven by Qualcomm, who needed partners selling 5G as a feature iPhone lacked, given that Apple and Qualcomm had reached a death in chips. Without being able to articulate why 5G is important, the media story has arisen that it is a major problem that Apple does not want 5G iPhones in 2019.
It seems to have forgotten that iPhone was missing 4G for about three years, at a time when it faced greater competition from Motorola and others who pushed 4G connectivity. If Apple could last for years, while 4G delivered a massive, clearly visible increase in mobile data rates compared to saturated 3G networks, it could probably endure 5G in a year where nobody can really use it and current phones aren't where anytime near to maximize their existing potential.
MWC 2018: Cheap Androids Trying to Look Like the iPhone X
In 2018, DigitalTrends noted that Samsung was back to display its Galaxy S9 at MWC.
"On the surface, the phone is not so different from the Galaxy S8, except for a few small design adjustments that the fingerprint sensor is placed in a slightly more convenient location," noted it. Galaxy S9 sales have developed poorly.
The second major event on the show was Android Go, which the site said, "is set to play an important role in bringing extremely low-cost phones to emerging markets, and several such phones were unveiled at MWC."  Asus launched its new Zenfone 5 Series at MWC 2018, which the site declared "takes some pretty heavy design devices from the iPhone X."
Asus Zenfone 5 "takes some pretty strong design signals from the iPhone X"  MWC 2018: Cheap Androids trying to look like the iPhone X
After a solid year of desperate attempts to look like an iPhone X, Android makers are trying to position their cheap phones under the halo umbrella with incredibly expensive folding devices. But will buyers of cheap Androids really feel better about the existence of super expensive concept phones from the same brand? Apple's iPhone X, which was pronounced too expensive for most of the launch year, was not just an aspirational halo device that tried to make Apple's other phones look cool. It was Apple's most popular phone on launch. There was a mass market success that large media sources flattened out about. This year, despite desperate attempts to repeat this strategy of lying about Apple's "failure" until it sounded like reality, Apple's iPhone XS and XR models were all mass market vendors, and very profitable. And despite a decline in expected sales, especially in China, Apple still took massive more money than any competition combined globally. So instead of MWC headlines that give a real perspective on the industry, it really looks like a hype festival desperately trying to put a good face on a number of companies desperately desperate in Apple's mobile arena, in conventional smartphones, in connected tablets and in wear. It can be changed if Huawei, Samsung and others create a real market for their ultra-expensive folding phones. However, given that they could not sell much cheaper phones, tablets, wearables or VR, it is quite clear that 5G folding phones are a big fake cutout that tries to distract from much bigger problems.
After a solid year of desperate attempts to look like an iPhone X, Android makers are trying to position their cheap phones under the halo umbrella with incredibly expensive folding devices. But will buyers of cheap Androids really feel better about the existence of super expensive concept phones from the same brand?
Apple's iPhone X, which was pronounced too expensive for most of the launch year, was not just an aspirational halo device that tried to make Apple's other phones look cool. It was Apple's most popular phone on launch. There was a mass market success that large media sources flattened out about.
This year, despite desperate attempts to repeat this strategy of lying about Apple's "failure" until it sounded like reality, Apple's iPhone XS and XR models were all mass market vendors, and very profitable. And despite a decline in expected sales, especially in China, Apple still took massive more money than any competition combined globally.
So instead of MWC headlines that give a real perspective on the industry, it really looks like a hype festival desperately trying to put a good face on a number of companies desperately desperate in Apple's mobile arena, in conventional smartphones, in connected tablets and in wear.
It can be changed if Huawei, Samsung and others create a real market for their ultra-expensive folding phones. However, given that they could not sell much cheaper phones, tablets, wearables or VR, it is quite clear that 5G folding phones are a big fake cutout that tries to distract from much bigger problems.