The growing concerns about novel coronavirus (nCoV-2019, to be precise) are starting to have repercussions around the world, and over the last week, we’ve seen countries closing borders, airlines cancelling flights and all manner of other changes taking place.
Mobile World Congress, scheduled to take place at the end of this month in Barcelona, Spain, is still going ahead – for now – but there’s a growing list of companies which will no longer have a presence at the show.
Overnight, LG has confirmed that it will be pulling out of MWC 2020 completely. This news follows ZTE’s announcement earlier in the week that it would be cancelling conferences and meetings, though it would still retain some presence at the show itself.
ZTE advised press that its main conference would be cancelled, due to issues with travel and visa delays, and also due to the xenophobia which has been experienced around the world following the outbreak of the virus. Being a Chinese company, one can only imagine that ZTE would be well worried about the safety of its staff – and that should be the number one priority for any company.
For LG’s part, the company issued a press release this afternoon explaining their MWC 2020 cancellation.
LG Electronics is closely monitoring the situation related to the novel coronavirus outbreak, which was recently declared a global emergency by the World Health Organization as the virus continues to spread outside China.
With the safety of its employees and general public foremost in mind, LG has decided to withdraw from exhibiting and participating in MWC 2020 later this month in Barcelona, Spain. This decision will prevent needlessly exposing hundreds of LG employees to international travel, which most health experts have advised.
In lieu of its participation in MWC, LG will be holding separate events in the near future to announce its 2020 mobile products.
LG Electronics thanks its supporters and the public for their understanding during these difficult and challenging times.
In a statement this week, GSMA confirmed that MWC 2020 will go on as planned later this month despite coronavirus concerns. The yearly tech conference is a big stage for Android manufacturers, and often, where we see many announcements for new smartphones and other products.
GSMA has stated it will be implementing recommendations from the World Health Organisation to minimise the impact of coronavirus at the show, including advising all attendees of a “no handshake” policy to reduce the risk of any person to person transmission of .. well .. anything.
Given these two relatively high profile announcements, we expect that other companies – particularly those head-quartered in China – may experience similar concerns. Huawei and Oppo are two huge names out of China which may also be impacted by coronavirus concerns, and we have reached out to them to confirm their intentions regarding MWC 2020.