Sony and Amazon are the latest companies to announce their absence from Mobile World Congress 2020 because of the new coronavirus outbreak. They are among a long list of other companies that canceled various events because of the very same reason, including LG, Nvidia, ZTE, and Ericsson.
That is all very disappointing news because the Mobile World Congress is the biggest yearly mobile tech trade show.
Sony officially announced its absence in a statement placed on its website: “Sony has been closely monitoring the evolving situation following the novel coronavirus outbreak, which was declared a global emergency by the World Health Organization on January 30th, 2020.”
Sony chose to place the safety and wellbeing of its customers above business.
Amazon followed by stating that “due to the outbreak and continued concerns about novel coronavirus, Amazon will withdraw from exhibiting and participating in Mobile World Congress 2020, scheduled for Feb. 24-27 in Barcelona, Spain.”
Indeed, Amazon’s presence at past MWC events wasn’t majorly consumer-focused.
On the other hand, Sony often showcased its most important mobile devices during past MWC shows. Last year they announced the Xperia 1 flagship smartphone at MWC. However, Sony made it clear that it will make its announcements online through the official Xperia YouTube channel.
The organizer of MWC, the GSM Association, put out a revised statement that furthermore detailed the countermeasures taken against the spread of the coronavirus. Perhaps one of the most drastic measures they adopted is the interdiction of access for citizens of China’s Hubei province, where the outbreak began.