The technology future is rushing at us with such unseemly haste it seems nothing can slow it down. But this week, something did. On Thursday, the organisers of the world's third-largest tech industry expo, Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, pulled the plug.

Only the Berlin-based IFA and the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas are bigger. With more than 100,000 trade visitors and 2,800 exhibitors expected, MWC is the world's biggest launch-pad for mobile technologies.

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