MWC: HTC Vive to Samsung Galaxy Fold, Iconic Tech That Launched in The Past


It is that time of the year again, as the annual Mobile World Congress (MWC) show starts on February 26 in Barcelona, Spain. MWC is one of the largest and most coveted exhibitions where smartphone brands, telecom companies and others all come together to showcase their latest and best technology.

And MWC is where traditionally, some of the biggest tech launches have taken place. From Samsung to HTC to 5G to foldables, MWC is where it has all taken place. So before the MWC 2024 madness begins, let’s look at some of the iconic products introduced at the event over its 37 years of history.

MWC 2008: The First Android Phone is Showcased

Source: Wikimedia Commons

After the unveiling of the iPhone in 2007, the smartphone landscape changed radically, and the true competitor to iPhones and iOS, the HTC Dream, was launched at MWC 2008. HTC Dream was the first Android phone, though it was far from perfect. Still, HTC Dream with Android 1.0 debuted in a market saturated by Symbian and Blackberry OS.

HTC Dream featured a slide-out display that revealed the full-size keyboard and had 5 navigation buttons along with a trackball. Of course, Android has gone through many changes over the years. But HTC Dream serves as a reminder of how far the Android platform has come and how it started a revolution.

MWC 2010: First Samsung Galaxy S Series Launched

The real revolution in Android started with the Samsung Galaxy S series’ global launch at MWC 2010. Samsung wasn’t the market leader back then, nor was it the best competitor for the iPhone. But the Galaxy S series was a critical launch at the time. The Galaxy S1 came with a Super AMOLED display, had support for DivX and FLAC, and a 5MP camera. Samsung has also introduced other Galaxy S series phones at the MWC event. The list includes the Galaxy SII, Galaxy S5 series, the Galaxy S6 and the Galaxy S7.

MWC 2015: HTC Vive VR Headset

Image source: Amazon

HTC Vive VR was shown off at MWC 2015, marking an entirely new product line from HTC. The brand was struggling to stay relevant in the smartphone space and the HTC Vive meant entry into an upcoming field, which is virtual reality. HTC partnered with Valve for the HTC Vice VR headset, which instantly gave it access to SteamVR games, making it one of the best devices for VR gaming.

MWC 2019: First Samsung Galaxy Fold

Image source: Samsung Newsroom

Samsung also showcased its first foldable smartphone, called the Samsung Galaxy Fold, at MWC 2019. It was the first mainstream foldable smartphone, and Samsung has launched more foldable phones over the years. But the first glimpse of what a foldable phone would look like was seen at MWC.

The Galaxy Fold debuted a new form factor in the smartphone industry for the first time in years. It had a 7.3-inch inner foldable display and a 4.6-inch outer display.

MWC 2019: First Set of 5G Phones Showcased

Image source: Samsung Newsroom

The fifth generation (5G) of telecommunications technology is now fairly common. But we saw 5G coming to smartphones at the 2019 edition of MWC, where brands introduced 5G variants of their phones. Samsung showcased the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G, its flagship phone with 5G support. Xiaomi also showcased its flagship Xiaomi Mix 3. LG launched the LG V50 Thinq, while Huawei launched its latest 5G phone and foldable Huawei Mate X.

MWC 2019: Xiaomi Mi Mix Alpha

Samsung’s foldables weren’t the only standout piece at MWC 2019. Xiaomi showcased the Mi Mix Alpha, a phone with a display on all sides, something that no other brand has offered to date. The phone had a flexible super AMOLED display, a 7.92-inch panel that was wrapped around the phone leaving a small bar on the back. The phone had a whopping screen-to ratio of over 180%.

MWC 2022: Metaverse Stole The Show

Metaverse was all the hype at MWC 2022. Various brands and telecom providers presented their new technologies and vision for the Metaverse at the event. SK Telecom showcased a 4D Metaverse ride at the show. Qualcomm showcased its advanced wireless research on enabling Metaverse and its long-term vision. HTC Vive showed off the new HTC Vive Focus 3 VR headsets, and it even showcased Vive-verse, which Vive mentioned is its version of Metaverse.

MWC 2023: Lenovo’s Rollable Laptop Display

Image source: CNET

Lenovo has always been at the forefront of innovation in the laptop space and they regularly showcase their latest technology at MWC Barcelona. Lenovo’s rollable laptop display was shown off as a concept device at MWC 2023, and it brought a new type of display technology to laptops.

The Rollable Laptop appears as a normal laptop with a 4:3 aspect ratio display. But with the press of a button, the screen rolls out and almost doubles in size and converts to an 8:3 aspect ratio. Lenovo also showcased a rollable smartphone at the MWC 2023, though these were prototypes.