Nokia is the latest to drop out of Mobile World Congress. The Finnish company has announced it has cancelled participation at MWC 2020. With the announcement, Nokia joins Ericsson, the other major player in the telecom infrastructure business. The company also confirmed that it has taken the decision after a full assessment of the risks related to a fast-moving situation. While major brands have been pulling out, Nokia’s decision to drop out is a big one.
GSMA, the industry association behind MWC, has not confirmed whether MWC will be cancelled this year. However, there are reports doing the rounds that it is evaluating the situation. “While the health and safety of our employees is our absolute priority, we also recognize that we have a responsibility to the industry and our customers,” the company said in a statement. It says the decision was reached after evaluating the situation, engaging with the GSMA and other stakeholders.
Nokia and MediaTek exit MWC 2020
“The conclusion of that process is that we believe the prudent decision is to cancel our participation at Mobile World Congress,” Nokia said in its statement. The company joins the growing exodus of the world’s largest exhibition for the mobile industry. Like Ericsson, Nokia plans to host a series of “Nokia Live” events. These events will be “aimed at showcasing the industry-leading demos and launches” previously planned for MWC 2020.
MediaTek has also announced that it will not participate at MWC this year. The fabless semiconductor company is dropping out citing health and safety of its employees, customers and partners. “The decision for MediaTek to withdraw from MWC Barcelona was not made lightly, however, we must prioritize safety and health of our employees, customers and partners,” said MediaTek President Joe Chen. “Though we’re disappointed to remove ourselves from a global industry event, we’re confident our decision is the right thing to do and in the best interest of the employees who make up MediaTek.”
The MWC is one of the important technology events for mobile manufacturers, software vendors and telecom infrastructure companies. However, this year, these companies are putting health ahead of everything else. The World Health Organization has officially named the outbreak as COVID-19. It stands for Coronavirus and the year it emerged. The outbreak is estimated to have killed over 1,000 people. It needs to be seen whether GSMA cancels the prestigious event, which seems plausible.