Mobile World Congress Kicks Off with 5G, Foldable Phones and More

Mobile world congress 2019

Just a few hours from now, mobile operators and mobile industry executives from all over the world will be descending on Barcelona for the world’s largest exhibition for the mobile industry: The Mobile World Congress (MWC).

Just like any other tech conference, buzzwords at this year’s MWC will be Wearables, IoT, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality. Among the hottest innovations presented this year will be 5G and advanced foldable smartphones.

After Samsung unveiled a foldable phone, called Galaxy Fold this week, Huawei plans to launch its own version of a folding smartphone – a 5G phone called Mate X.

Related Royole’s Ultra-Thin Flexible Display Shows Promise for Foldable Smartphones of the Future

A photo posted to Twitter show workers at MWC 2019 in Barcelona installing a billboard for Huawei’s Mate X.

The Twitter photo suggests the Mate X will open up from a smartphone-size gadget to become more of a tablet-size device. But unlike the Galaxy Fold, the Mate X’s larger screen appears to wrap around the outside of the gadget, instead of being enclosed like a spread in a magazine, reports CNET.

Other companies working on foldable phones include LG, Royole (with its Flexpai), TCL and Xiaomi.

TCL’s patent image showed the company is planning on a foldable phone that can you can also wear as a smartwatch on your wrist. The image shows five different devices with flexible displays, including two tablets, two smartphones and a flexible phone that could curve into a smartwatch.

Even before most smartphone manufacturers have introduced their first 5G handsets, Qualcomm is already thinking about a second-generation modem. The company just announced its Snapdragon X55 5G modem, its follow-up to its first 5G modem, the X50. Snapdragon X55 is a 7-nanometer single-chip integrated 5G to 2G multimode modem that supports 5G NR mmWave and sub-6 GHz spectrum bands with up to 7 gigabits per second (Gbps) download speeds and 3 Gbps upload speeds over 5G, and Category 22 LTE with up to 2.5 Gbps LTE download speeds, according to Qualcomm.

Qualcomm will make the new modem available to its partners in the coming months.

Samsung also announced its next generation 5G mmWave chipsets. The chipsets are comprised of Radio Frequency Integrated Circuits (RFICs) and Digital/Analog Front End (DAFE) Application-specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) – supporting 28GHz and 39GHz bands.