February 28, 2017
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Check out these new mobile devices introduced at Mobile World Congress 2017

The Mobile World Congress (MWC) is upon us once again, with a lot of exciting announcements (and some noticeable absences) from the biggest tech companies in the industry today. The four-day event is currently being held in Barcelona, Spain, running from February 27 to March 2.

Let’s start with the obvious absence from Samsung: there’s no Galaxy S8 to follow up the disastrous Note 7. However, they did the tease the S8 at the end of their Sunday press conference, confirming that the S8 will be unveiled on March 29 in New York City. They also unveiled a new Gear VR headset, a new android tablet called the Galaxy Tab S3 (with four speakers and stylus), and two new tablets that run on Windows, the Galaxy Book 10 and Galaxy Book 12, in an effort to go up against Microsoft’s Surface Book.

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The Samsung presentation was only interrupted by Greenpeace protesters who want to know how Samsung is going to dispose off the 4.3 million recalled Galaxy Note 7 units. Samsung only answered with a “you’ve made your point” remark and didn’t really address the issue.

LG G6

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Now that’s out of the way, LG’s LG G6 was left to shine bright at the MWC. The LG G6 is LG’s flagship phone this year, with a 5.7-inch screen and a tall 18:9 aspect ratio, making it unusually large against the 16:9 standard. It supports Dolby Vision HDR, the first phone of its kind, to further improve its image quality. It’s waterproof, has a dual-lens camera, but doesn’t have changeable batteries like its predecessor, the LG G5. It’s powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor but it’s a little disappointing since the better Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 is going to be in upcoming phones.

Google Assistant on Android 6.0 or higher

Google made a stunning announcement: their voice-activated Google Assistant, which is only built in their Pixel phones and the LG G6, will be made available on nearly all phones with Android 6.0 or later, but only in certain territories. The free upgrade will go be up as soon as later this week.

Throwback

 

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Nokia made waves last weekend by bringing back a beloved classic, the 3310, and updating it into the modern era with a colored screen and a camera—but not much else. This might sell well with consumers who are looking for easy to acquire midrange phones, but we’ll still have to see if it’s an able and reliable phone, not to mention durable. Nokia actually showcased three Android phones but it was the updated 3310 that garnered the most attention. They will also put the Nokia brand on all Withings gear by this summer.

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Blackberry is also on throwback mode by introducing BlackBerry KeyOne, a keyboard phone that’s powered by Android and produced by Chinese company TCL.

Lenovo/Motorola

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Though Lenovo has bought Motorola, the company made the wise decision of keeping the Moto brand of smartphones alive. Their latest offerings, the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus, are new Android models that improve budget phones with features like splashproof metal bodies, expandable storage, dual SIM slots, and NFC support. They will also run android 7.0 so expect the Google Assistant to be a feature when it gets released this March.

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Lenovo is also releasing a successor to their 2-in-1 laptop/tablet hybrid which they released last year at $229. The new device is called the Miix 320, priced only at $199, and is set up to go against the Microsoft’s Surface, another laptop/tablet hybrid.

Huawei

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Huawei comes back with an improvement on last year’s P9, the P10. It’s a cool update on a sleek and solidly-built budget phone with a Leica-branded dual-camera system, a phone that can go toe to toe with the best ones in the market, only with features that borrow slightly from the iPhone and updated specifications. With the P10, it’s bringing its Leica camera to the front as well. We don’t know about you, but a budget phone with Leica cameras on the front and back seems like a great bargain.

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They have also unveiled two new Android Wear watches, the Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic. The release runs at the heels of the Android Wear 2.0 update and will be bigger, better, and more fitness focused.

Sony

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Sony announced a new Xperia phone on the way, the 5.5-inch Xperia XZ Premium, which features a handful of world firsts for a smartphone: a 4K HDR screen, memory-stacked camera, and a Snapdragon 835. The memory-stacked camera is impressive, which lets the phone capture video in super-slow motion (960fps) at 720p resolution.

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Sony also announced a cool new product that will be on sale this year: the Xperia Touch, an Android-powered projector that turns any surface into a touchscreen. The projector works effectively like a tablet in conjunction with any flat surface you have on hand, which is awesome, but will cost around $1600.

We’ll update the blog for more of the freshest bits from MWC 2017.