electronics and gadgets

MWC 2023 highlights so far: Xiaomi concept AR glasses, Honor foldable, Nokia repairable smartphone

Kyle Chua
MWC 2023 highlights so far: Xiaomi concept AR glasses, Honor foldable, Nokia repairable smartphone

MWC 2023. A view of the venue of the GSMA's 2023 Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Spain February 28, 2023.

Nacho Doce/Reuters

Chinese tech giants take over the opening of this year’s Mobile World Congress

Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2023 is in full swing, with many of the world’s top gadget makers having already showcased their latest innovations and advancements. The annual mobile industry trade event returned to Barcelona, Spain this year, hosting tens of thousands of attendees as it runs from February 27 to March 2.

Here are the top announcements so far:

Photo from Xiaomi
Xiaomi’s concept AR glasses

MWC isn’t limited to smartphones or mobile technologies. Apart from announcing the global launch of the Xiaomi 13 series, Xiaomi debuted its concept augmented reality (AR) glasses, the Wireless AR Glass Discovery Edition.

The prototype device sports a pair of microOLED panels and “free-form, light-guiding prisms,” which allow it to superimpose digital interfaces and elements in the real world. It also has hand-tracking to let you use your hands to manipulate what you see on the glasses. A concept video shared by Xiaomi shows a wearer turning off a smart light by flicking a digital switch.

The wearable is compact and lightweight relative to the amount of advanced hardware it houses, coming in at 126g. Xiaomi says that’s thanks to its use of magnesium-titanium alloy and carbon fiber material for the frame. The device can also wirelessly connect to smartphones, while maintaining low latency, reducing the chance of experiencing any input lag.

Converge pursuing cloud-based video surveillance with Korean partner

On the sidelines of the MWC festivities, Converge signed a memorandum of understanding with Korea’s KT Corporation to explore new enterprise-focused digital transformation solutions in the Philippines.

Part of this involves pursuing a cloud-based video surveillance solution called Video Surveillance as a Service (VSaaS) and a transportation management technology, Mobility as a Service (MaaS), among others.

“We are continuously working with global technology companies to provide augmented digital solutions that adapt to the requirements of our evolving business environment,” said Converge CEO Dennis Uy, who was present at the signing.

The two network providers look to leverage each other’s expertise in information and communication technology to deliver innovative solutions to their respective home markets.

Photo from Honor
Honor foldable goes global

Honor’s latest foldable, the Magic VS, is no longer exclusive to China. The former Huawei sub-brand announced the smartphone is now set to hit the global markets with a starting price of €1,599.

For those unfamiliar, the device, design-wise, isn’t too far off from the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4. Both sport a large seven-plus-inch internal panel and a six-and-a-half-inch cover panel. The difference perhaps is that the Magic VS is a few millimeters thinner than the Z Fold 4, and, as Honor touts, folds more tightly, making the gap between the panels less noticeable. Honor also says its device can withstand more folds than the Galaxy Z Fold 4.

Alongside the foldable, the Chinese smartphone maker also announced Honor Magic5 Pro, a more traditional release that packs a trio of 50MP camera sensors and a fairly sizable 6.81-inch display. It has a starting price of €1,199.

Photo from HMD
Nokia’s DIY repairable smartphone

Nokia wants to save you from a trip to the repair shop by releasing a budget-friendly smartphone that you can repair yourself.

The G22 features a removable back and an internal design that makes swapping components easy. Among the components that you can swap include the battery, screen, and charging port.

You can buy the replacement parts and how-to guides for the repairs through American repair outlet iFixit.

The phone is priced £149.99, and has a ship date of March 8.

Lenovo’s rollable laptop and smartphone concepts

Lenovo’s rollable laptop and smartphone made appearances at the MWC show floor after being first teased in October last year. The idea behind the rollable as a feature is that displays aren’t static, and can expand when you need them to. And that’s exactly what the company’s new concepts can do.

The laptop concept, for instance, doesn’t look any different from others the company has previously put out, according to The Verge. But with the flip of a switch, it expands the display from 12.7 inches to 15.3 inches by unrolling the panel hidden underneath the keyboard. It’s almost the same for the smartphone concept, which is under the Motorola brand – double tap a button on the side, and the 5-inch square display expands to give you a 6.5-inch display.

No word on pricing or release date yet since they’re still very much concept devices. – Rappler.com

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