Mobile World Congress 2020 Canceled Due to Coronavirus

Mobile World Congress, a major smartphone trade show event held each year in Barcelona, Spain, has been canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The Mobile World Congress event in Spain is a huge trade show that's important to the tech world because it's where many device manufacturers announce new smartphones and other hardware. Apple doesn't participate, but many other major brands make announcements at MWC.

Starting in early February, multiple vendors began pulling out of the event, citing concerns about the coronavirus and the potential for spreading it at such a large event. Intel, LG, Nokia, Vodafone, ZTE, Nvidia, Sony, Amazon, Cisco, Ericsson and other notable companies canceled press conferences and attendance plans.

Given the number of companies refusing to go to MWC, the GSM Association responsible for organizing the event today confirmed to Bloomberg that it's canceled. GSMA CEO John Hoffman said that the virus outbreak has made it "impossible" to hold the event.

The GSMA initially attempted to continue on with MWC, implementing disinfection measures, banning attendees from certain areas in China, and more, but too many companies exited the event. Canceling MWC is similar to canceling CES, as it is a huge deal for new product launches and partnerships.

The coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China, has infected more than 42,000 people and more than 1,000 people have died, primarily in China.

Top Rated Comments

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6 days ago at 11:06 am
So apparently not a 'Limitless' conference. It has limits.
Rating: 15 Votes
6 days ago at 11:01 am
Better to be safe than sorry! Wishing everybody great health.
Rating: 12 Votes
6 days ago at 11:53 am

"a huge trade show that's important to the tech world because it's where many device manufacturers announce new smartphones and other hardware. "

So why don't they just roll this into CES? Do we really need a whole separate show for phones?

Because different trade organizations throw their own conferences.

Though I tried to combine my daughter’s birthday party with some stranger’s down the street based on the same logic, and now I’m not very popular in my neighborhood.
Rating: 9 Votes
6 days ago at 11:54 am


the coronavirus outbreak.

The coronavirus,

MacRumors, please call it by its new moniker: Covid-19 (or at least use its scientific name, 2019-nCoV); coronavirus is a generic term, not specific to this particular virus or illness.
Rating: 8 Votes
6 days ago at 11:02 am
Understandable, but wow. That is a big deal for the mobile space. Like the article says, it is like cancelling CES.
Rating: 6 Votes
6 days ago at 11:03 am
I really hope the infections/deaths stop ASAP. It’s affecting so many people. Sad stuff.
Rating: 6 Votes
6 days ago at 11:39 am

If this gets worse, I think Apple will do the same for its own events or at least limit attendance at WWDC to only those in North America. I think in the case of the new iPhone a broadcast event from Apple Park with Apple employees and select few journalists and YouTubers should be enough.

It's highly unlikely that the outbreak lasts that long.
Rating: 6 Votes
6 days ago at 11:45 am

You raise an interesting point. Man how weird would it be to watch Apple's March event with barely anyone in attendance ?

Hard to even imagine it really

It may surprise you, but North America actually has enough people to fill Apple’s auditorium :cool:
Rating: 5 Votes
5 days ago at 07:52 pm

You will literally die from flu (which is more dangerous) before you die from novel coronavirus... this whole thing has been blown waaaaaaay out of proportion; fueled by the media, fear, and pure ignorance.

If y'all want something to be afraid of, be afraid of flu.

In the U.S. this year, there have been 19M flu infections and 10k deaths. So 0.05% lethality.

Covid19, as of earlier today, around 48k infections and 1310 deaths, or 2.7% lethality.

Covid19 also appears to be much more contagious.
Rating: 4 Votes
6 days ago at 02:34 pm

I can't seem to tell if Covid-19 is a legit threat or if it's just hyped like SARS or MERS. I see signs pointing to both, which means the truth is probably somewhere in the middle. It seems serious but the world isn't ending. The big takeaway is that if this was 100 years ago we'd be in a lot more trouble. Or if this outbreak started in somewhere other than China where they don't mind dumping mounds of dirt and rocks to block all entry/exit from Wuhan and keep people trapped while having the resources to build a hospital in 10 days. But since there are several other members of the Coronavirus which are quite common and still haven't been eradicated (part of the common cold strains), there is a possibility that it could be around for a long time, semi-controlled, killing enough people to be bad but not a whole lot worse than the flu except that it seems to also kill people who aren't just infants or elderly. My biggest concern is my young daughter who has asthma and has been hospitalized for respiratory viruses in the past. She is likely in a high risk category.

My wife is a physician. Last I talked to her, she told me to stop worrying about it. I'm not sure how well this will spread in the US with this much attention.

We have diseases in the US of greater concern right now with flu being pretty serious this year.
Rating: 3 Votes

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