After travelling (most of it on foot) around what only can be described as a ridiculously large venue (huge!), day one of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona has just wrapped up. Of course, we’re still frantically working — in between forgetting notebook chargers at home (yes, I really did) and cursing the mediocre hotel Internet, we’ve still managed to bring you the best of MWC on the first day.
Samsung kicked off proceedings last night with the official launch of the Samsung Wave, its first smartphone running the new Bada operating system. Sony Ericsson also chose to make its announcements before the official opening of the show, unveiling the XPERIA X10 Mini and XPERIA X10 Mini Pro handsets. These are smaller versions of the company’s flagship Android handset, the XPERIA X10.
Surprisingly, the most exciting hands-on demo we attended today was in fact the XPERIA X10. Sony Ericsson’s first Android smartphone looks extremely impressive, not only in its user interface, but also its physical design. The sleek, curved smartphone feels great to hold in your hands and the 4in capacitive touch screen is effective and responsive. We are eagerly anticipating its release in Australia, which is expected to be in the next few months.
On the mobile broadband front, we were treated to a live demo of Telstra’s new broadband modem, developed in conjunction with Sierra Wireless, Ericsson and Qualcomm. Speeds demonstrated peaked at almost 40Mbps, with the device rated at a maximum download speed of 42Mbps and upload speed of 5.8Mbps. Telstra said the new device will be released in Australia “mid-year.”
Other announcements included Microsoft unveiling its latest mobile operating system, the long awaited Windows Mobile 7, and Nokia announcing a collaboration with Intel to launch a new mobile computing platform called MeeBo. This new open source platform is aimed not only at smartphones, but also netbooks and various other mobile computing products.
Day two should shed light on HTC's latest efforts, rumoured to be an Android smartphone with a massive screen similar to the HD2. We’ll have coverage of this and plenty more, tomorrow.
Ross Catanzariti flew to Barcelona as a guest of Samsung.