What you need to know
- Mobile World Congress 2020 is still scheduled to go on as planned.
- Previously, WIRED had reported that the GSMA was in talks to cancel the event, even asking the Spanish government to declare a health emergency.
- So far, many major companies have pulled out of the event such as, Amazon, LG, NVIDIA, Sony, Vivo, and more.
Mobile World Congress 2020 will go on, at least for now. With so many cancelations, MWC 2020's fate has been in question over the past couple of days. However, the latest report out of La Vanguardia states that the GSMA has decided to continue with the show.
The news comes after a report from WIRED earlier today that said the GSMA was lobbying the Spanish government to declare a health emergency that would allow it to cancel the event. Otherwise, the GSMA wouldn't be allowed to collect insurance, and it would be on the hook for a substantial cancelation fee.
MWC is the largest mobile conference in the world, and as such, there is a lot of money at stake. According to a report from El Pais, MWC brings in €492 million or around $536 million and creates 14,000 temporary jobs in Barcelona. Attendance this year was expected to top over 100,000, with visitors coming in from over 200 countries.
However, that was all before the coronavirus outbreak, which has so far infected more than 42,000 people and killed over 1,100. Even with MWC taking precautions such as banning attendees from the province where the coronavirus originated, it has still done little to stop the influx of cancellations.
Leading up to MWC 2020, some of the biggest names in tech have begun dropping out like flies over concerns of spreading the coronavirus. It seems a day can't go by without one or more companies joining the list of no shows.
So far, the list of companies dropping out includes Amazon, Cisco, Ericsson, Facebook, Intel, LG, NVIDIA, Sony, TCL, Vivo, Volvo, ZTE, and more. Most recently, BT and maker of Nokia phones HMD Global joined the ever-growing list as well.