Mobile World Congress in Barcelona has returned. But it’s not the same as before. Yes, the event has been changing over recent years — from Samsung holding its own events for its Galaxy flagships before the showcase comes around to the pandemic disrupting the annual event for the past two years.

But MWC 2022 has found itself in a strange middle ground. True to form, Samsung revealed its latest Galaxy S22 series weeks in advance of the event, while major brands such as Sony said they wouldn’t have a presence at the event at all. Furthermore, OnePlus, often a big reason to tune into MWC each year for its latest flagship launch, has been strangely AWOL (it launched the OnePlus 10 Pro in China and nowhere else thus far).

Instead, mobile brands like TCL, Nokia, and Motorola are holding the fort. This may not be the most prestigious of fields, but they came with a raft of announcements to keep things interesting.

Outside of the companies whose products are readily available in the US, there was more on the agenda. Brands like Realme, Honor, and Xiaomi all had hardware to show. Perhaps most interesting for US onlookers is what Oppo unveiled. Oppo is a sister brand to OnePlus, and their ties have grown ever closer to late. The Oppo Find X5 Pro, revealed just ahead of MWC, even sports a Hasselblad partnership — a new team-up that came to the OnePlus 9 Pro last year.

Fortunately, aside from this oddly limited showing from the phone world, there was more to get excited about at MWC 2022. Laptops, 2-in-1s, tablets, and a few surprises have come to the rescue of the Mobile World Congress this year.

Samsung’s New Ultra Galaxy Books

Photograph: Samsung

Despite lacking a flagship phone launch at the event, we actually return to a top tech brand for one of the most interesting sets of products for MWC 2022: Samsung, which revealed the Galaxy Book2 Pro and Galaxy Book2 Pro 360.

The first iterations were no-frills in terms of design, just well-built, stylish, and super thin — alongside top ultrabook specs. The Galaxy Book2 Pro and Book2 Pro 360 look to continue the trend. You still get all that we just mentioned but with a 2022 dose of the latest Intel chips, Thunderbolt 4, FHD 1080p webcam, and 65W USB-C charging capabilities. The Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro has a starting price of $ 1,050 (£ 999) and the Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 starts at $ 1,250 (£ 949).

Lenovo’s Latest ThinkPad

Photograph: Lenovo

While Samsung’s laptops are top notch and great for right now, they aren’t devices to get you excited about the future of computing. At this year’s MWC, Lenovo and Huawei have covered that in the laptop space.

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