While certainly overshadowed by the Olympics, there is another international event taking place this week. It is the Mobile World Congress 2010 which takes place February 15-18. This is the premiere event for mobile device manufacturers. 47,000 attendees are expected and over 1,300 companies will exhibit products. Based on rumors and some bona fide news, we can expect the following:
- KEYNOTE: Eric Schmidt, Google CEO, will be the keynote speaker. He is expected to speak about “openness” and how it relates to the mobile market. (It basically means Google believes it can beat the competition silly in a fair fight. Which makes one wonder, will there continue to be fair fights after Google beats everyone silly?)
- MICROSOFT: Microsoft could unveil Windows Mobile 7. Some are predicting a new line of Microsoft phones in lieu of a WinMo 7 debut. It is expected to incorporate many of the Zune HD features. (WinMo 7 could make Microsoft relevant in the mobile market. Presently, WinMo has under 8% of smartphone marketshare. I expect that WinMo 7 will be heavily marketed along with Microsoft’s Bing search (which, suprisingly, is gaining in popularity and has 9% of the internet search market).)
- HTC: HTC, the Taiwanese manufacturer of the Nexus One, could steal the show. Pictures and videos have surfaced of upcoming devices, including the HTC Incredible and WiMax capable smartphones. Presumably, some of the HTC lineup will be on display at the MWC2010. (I’m hoping at least one of the better HTC phones touches down on Verizon. Full disclosure: I am likely to switch to an HTC Android phone if Verizon wises up and begins offering handsets that compete directly with the Motorola Droid. As an aside, I’m still curious what the ROI was on the $100 million campaign to sell the Droid.)
- SONY: Sony will unveil the much-anticipated, and potentially over-hyped, X10. (Yeah, I hyped it on the blog too.)
- PALM: Palm is a complete and utter no show. They will unveil nothing. Nada. (Palm slips further into oblivion.)
- RIM: RIM has nothing to show or could unveil the “Dakota” or “Magnum” which is basically an enlarged candybar Blackberry with a traditional keyboard and a touchscreen. (RIM needs to figure out how to emulate Android and run Android apps; this could be virtually (no pun intended) impossible. RIM is practically guaranteed to lose marketshare in the next few years. No longer will it be able to ride on the coattails of the Curve 8330 users. When they’re up for new phones, other platforms will look much more attractive. I also think Verizon is unlikely to promote the hell out of any Blackberry product after repeated strains on their relationship.)
More to come when the MWC2010 begins. For pics and vids of the wares live from the event, I recommend the site IntoMobile.com.
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