Phonemakers are piling in to fill a gap in the market left by Samsung. As Ivor Bennett reports from Barcelona, several newcomers, and a few old names, are contenders to fill the hole in the premium end of the market.
Simple is the new smart at this year's Mobile World Congress. Nokia reintroducing its iconic 3310, the world's most popular phone in the year 2000. It doesn't do much more than it did back then. But the 22 hours of talk time was still enough to steal the show. SOUNBITE (English) BEN WOOD, CHIEF OF RESEARCH, CCS INSIGHT, SAYING: "I think it's a very very smart move by the Nokia guys to get their brand front and centre and back in people's hands because this is such a nostalgic product. It's a device that for many people it was the first phone they had." Normally it's Samsung that dominates attention. But the recall of its Note 7 means it has no key device this year, leaving a gap others are desperate to fill." (SOUNDBITE) (English) LG ELECTRONICS SENIOR DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS, KEN HONG, SAYING: "Our expectations, we don't want to get them too high but we are very optimistic that there's a lot of attention on LG at this show Others are pushing the high end of the market, higher still. Sony bringing the event to a standstill with its Xperia XZ Premium and super slow-motion camera. SOUNBITE (English) IVOR BENNETT, REUTERS REPORTER, SAYING: "The camera shoots 960 frames a second - which Sony says is 4 times slower than any other smartphone. and it means that every day actions like this are transformed into incredibly dramatic events." The device is also the world's first smartphone with a 4K HDR display. Underlining the importance of video in the mobile sphere. SOUNBITE (English) BEN WOOD, CHIEF OF RESEARCH, CCS INSIGHT, SAYING: "Netflix are here, Amazon are here. Lots of other media companies. and i think it's the whole new way in which people are snacking on content. It's the new primary delivery mechanism." None of that's avaialble on the 3310 of course. But how many premium devices have a battery that can last up to 1 month?