Mobile World Congress is a one-of-a-kind industry tradeshow and one of the biggest mobile events on the planet. Every year in Barcelona, we find a conference packed full of new people to meet, new ideas to discover, and all the biggest announcements from the industry’s hottest names.

So, what was all the buzz about this year?

The short answer: LOTS of phones. The long answer: let’s dive in…


#1. Home Sweet Home

This year, #TeamTaptica was back and better than ever with a sleek new home base and enough chocolate to supply (almost) all of Barcelona.

Check out more of the action behind the scenes and on the floor right here on Instagram.


#2. 5G Becomes a Reality

The word on everybody’s lips at MWC 2019 was “5G.”

Among these conversations, Sprint led the pack by announcing that they will launch commercial standards-based 5G in various US cities by May of this year. First up? Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, and Kansas City. After that, round two of the rollout will cover Houston, LA, NYC, Phoenix, and Washington DC, and should be fully integrated by the end of H1 2019.

This is the biggest step towards a fully 5G future that we’ve seen to date. Until now, 5G has only been accessible through AT&T’s mobile hotspot and/or Verizon’s home broadband.

The biggest impact of 5G will be a massive reduction in latency on mobile, meaning that cloud-run programs should have no perceptible delays when served on smartphones. What does this mean for the average user? For starters, think: incredible gaming graphics in a snap and instant video streaming, without the need to weigh down your phone with hefty file storage.


#3. New Phones Galore

As 5G races into existence, international phone manufacturers have been excitedly announcing their own compatible devices all week long… Among them, some of the world’s biggest players in the smartphone race: Samsung, LG, Huawei, ZTE, Xiaomi, Sony, and HTC.

In addition to all these shiny new 5G devices, what really stole the show on the product floor was the latest foldable phone designs. Topping the list was Huawei’s Mate X and Motorola’s MotoZ3 (which, despite the looks of its prototype, is definitely not a new RAZR. Sorry, Millennials.)

Hungry for more handsets? You can check out some more exhaustive lists of the week’s biggest reveals here and here.


#4. Privacy & Security & Transparency Reign Supreme

From enhancing IoT security, to keeping digital health data in the right hands, to using AI to defeat ad bots, one of the biggest areas of focus at MWC this year had to do with ethical and secure data usage.

The theme of this year’s conference was “Intelligent Connectivity,” so it comes as no surprise that many of the event’s tracks sought to dive deeper into the potential ramifications that come along with today’s hyper-connected world.

As our lives becoming increasingly intertwined with the technological advances that power us, now is the time to push these tough questions and define a better balance between our systems of data application and protection.


Whew! What an amazing week. Our team had a blast taking in all the sights and spending some time with new and familiar faces. Thank you to GSMA for another great year. Until 2020…