MWC 2013: news and reviews from the world’s biggest mobile show

MWC 2013 has kicked off in Barcelona with big news from Mozilla, Nokia, Samsung and more.

Mobile World Congress takes over Barcelona at the end of February, moving to a new larger location this year as smartphones and tablets continue to dominate the tech industry.

Here, we round up the top news at the show – with announcements and first-look reviews from MWC 2013 coming throughout the week.

HP Slate7 Android tablet announced

25 February 2013 – HP has unveiled its much-rumoured Android tablet, the Slate7. No UK pricing has yet to be revealed, but it’s expected to cost $169 when it arrives in April.

The Slate7 features a dual-core Cortex-A9 1.6GHz processor and runs Android 4.1.


Nokia unveils budget-priced Lumia 520, 720 smartphones

25 February 2013 – Nokia has kicked off Mobile World Congress by unveiling a pair of low-cost Windows Phone devices. The Lumia 520 costs only £120, and comes with a 1GHz processor, 8GB of storage and a microSD slot, and a 4in 800 x 480 display. It will be available in the UK in the second quarter.

The Lumia 720 features a 4.3in display, dual-core 1GHz CPU, and 8GB of storage plus a microSD slot. It will also arrive in the second quarter, and cost about £218.

Nokia Lumia 720

Huawei claims Ascend P2 is “world’s fastest smartphone”

24 February 2013Huawei has unveiled the Ascend P2, claiming it’s “the world’s fastest smartphone”.

That claim is for its “CAT4” LTE, which allows the Ascend P2 to support download speeds of up to 150Mbits/sec. The Android 4.1 smartphone features a 4.7in, 1,280 x 720p resolution display, and runs a 1.5GHz, quad-core CPU and 1GB of RAM. It’s 8.4mm at its thinnest and weighs only 122g. The Ascend P2 also features a 13-megapixel camera, and can shoot Full HD, 1080p video.

The Huawei Ascend P2 is expected to arrive in Europe in the second quarter, for €399 (around £345).

Ascend P2

Mozilla unveils first Firefox OS handsets

24 February 2013 – Mozilla has shown off the first phones running its Firefox OS, with handsets made by ZTE, Huawei, LG and Alcatel. The low-cost handsets – such as the ZTE Open, which will cost less than £70 – are targeted at emerging markets. They’ll arrive in Poland, Hungary, Columbia, Mexico and Brazil in the second quarter, but won’t arrive in the UK until 2014.

Find out more with our first-look review of the ZTE Open running Firefox OS.

ZTE Open - the first Firefox OS phone

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 unveiled

24 February 2013 – Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Note 8, an Android tablet that can make and receive phone calls. Samsung has not yet announced pricing or a specific release date.

The Galaxy Note 8 comes with Samsung’s stylus, features a 1,280 x 800 TFT display, and runs a 1.6GHz chip, alongside either 16GB or 32GB of storage. That can be expanded via the microSD slot.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 with S Pen

Greatest hits of MWC 2013

24 February 2013PC Pro is picking the nine best products on show at MWC, and you can help. Head over to our Greatest Hits of MWC 2013 blog post to let us know which devices you think are the best tablets and smartphones on Android and Windows Phone, and hardware is the best in show.

LG unveils Optimus F5 and Optimus F7 ahead of MWC

21 February 2013 – LG has unveiled a pair of 4G handsets ahead of MWC, the Optimus F5 and the Optimus F7. The Optimus F5 is a 4.3in handset with 1.2GHz dual-core processor and “largest in class” battery, while the 4.7in Optimus F7 runs on a 1.5GHz dual-core processor. Both come with the latest version of Android and LG’s “QSlide”, an interface to enable the use of two apps at the same time.

Dr. Jong-seok Park, president and CEO of LG Electronics Mobile, said: “With adoption of LTE expected to explode in 2013, we are sending a clear message to consumers with the Optimus F Series that LTE isn’t only for heavy-content users and techies anymore. It’s for everyone.”

The Optimus F5 will be released in Europe in Q2, followed by the Optimus F7 in “selected markets”. Pricing is yet to be revealed.

Ubuntu tablet and smartphone interfaces on show at MWC

19 February 2013 – Canonical is set to release previews of its smartphone and tablet OS, allowing developers to download the interfaces to a Nexus 7 or Nexus 10 tablet, or a Nexus smartphone, in order to start creating apps. The new OSes, part of Canonical’s wider efforts to make a single platform across mobile and PC, will be on show at Mobile World Congress, and the development firm will be on hand to flip Nexus devices to Ubuntu to enable visitors to try it out.

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