Coronavirus still continues to scare away big industries (like ZTE from attending the Mobile World Congress Press Conference which is a big milestone for the tech industry) from functioning at full capacity because of certain precautions they have to take with China, the said origin of the virus.
The statement given by ZTE regarding the topic
The secondary effects of the outbreak were too much of a risk according to ZTE's statement. The coronavirus is still a sensitive topic going around and even big companies like ZTE are being cautious around this virus. Since the virus has made it harder to get visas and certain travel arrangements, ZTE simply noted that they do not want people to go through an uncomfortable process just to attend this event.
Although it can be seen as thoughtful, this course of action is also a hard one to make because of the importance of the Mobile World Congress Press Conference where tech companies are able to showcase what they have to offer to the table. This information comes from The Verge's interview with a ZTE spokesperson.
The MWC event
Despite ZTE's cancellation, the MWC event seems to be running just fine despite the coronavirus outbreak due to the importance of this esteemed event. Statements from GSMA say that hygienic measures will be improved to make sure contraction of this virus becomes unlikely. There will also be a medical team present in this even just in case something drastic happens. The MWC is focusing their efforts on certain parts that are prone to physical contact like doorknobs and etc.
The effects of the coronavirus
There have already been 400 reported deaths and approximately 20,000 infected with this virus and this has been an alarming fact for most businesses. Even just recently, other companies like Uber just recently suspended their 240 riders which have had their vehicles driven through Mexico and other places where this virus is most likely rampant. Even Australia is dealing with 13 confirmed cases of the coronavirus.
Other companies which have been affected
Huawei has already released a statement that they will be postponing their event due to the safety precautions that might compromise the safety of their participants. The Huawei event was supposed to take place on February 11 and 12 but have then been pushed to March 27 and 28. If big tech companies like Huawei have postponed their event, we might as well expect other companies to do the same.
The Mobile World Congress is still taking place
Although the Mobile World Congress does not take place in China, the thought of travel is what scared ZTE. The Mobile World Congress is supposed to take place on February 24 all the way to 27 in Barcelona. This event is one of the biggest in the world of tech and it is often where revelations of new products or updates on existing ones are presented. ZTE's decision to stay away from the Mobile World Congress Press Conference is final.