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LG and ZTE pull out of MWC 2020 over ongoing coronavirus threat

South Korean and Chinese brands LG and ZTE have decided to withdraw participation from the event, keeping the health of their employees and the general public ahead of all else.

  • Published: February 5, 2020 1:43 PM IST

The coronavirus scare is growing with each day. The impact of the epidemic that originated in China has already started impacting trade elements across the world. This has extended to the technology community, ahead of Mobile World Congress that takes part in Barcelona, Spain later this month. Now, two brands – LG and ZTE have decided to drop out of the event over the virus scare. Also Read - Nokia announces MWC 2020 event on February 23; Android feature phone expected

South Korean brand LG has stated that the brand has been closely monitoring the coronavirus outbreak. The outbreak recently got a ‘global emergency’ tag by the World Health Organization (WHO). Since then, the brand has decided to withdraw from the event. Hence, LG will not be either exhibiting or participating at MWC 2020. Also Read - Nokia 8.2 5G, Nokia 5.2, Nokia 1.3 may launch at MWC 2020: Check full details

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The brand has stated that it will keep the safety and wellbeing of its employees and the general public foremost. The decision will prevent exposing hundreds of employees to international travel, which is inadvisable in the circumstances. Instead, LG has chosen to hold separate events “in the near future” later in the year. The brand will be announcing its mobile phones for 2020 at these events. Also Read - Realme X50 Pro India launch expected after MWC 2020 debut

Chinese brand ZTE also announced that it will be skipping MWC. There were earlier reports that suggested that ZTE was one of the brands already struggling with travel bans to reach the event. Now, the brand spoke to The Verge stating that they “tend to be an overly courteous company, and simply don’t want to make people uncomfortable.”

The situation in Barcelona, ahead of MWC

The events taking place between February 24 and 27 will go as scheduled. GSMA previously announced measures that were being taken to prevent the spread of the virus. This includes increased cleaning and disinfection of high traffic areas like catering spaces, handrails, bathrooms and more. The event will also have onsite medical support. MWC will also be adopting a new “mic-change protocol” for speakers which will likely mean microphones will be changed ahead of separate keynotes. Further, all attendees of the event are also advised to adopt a self-explanatory “no-handshake policy.”

  • Published Date: February 5, 2020 1:43 PM IST
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