Case in point: both LG and ZTE have announced today that they're going to skip Mobile World Congress, the biggest yearly showcase in the field, which is taking place in Barcelona, Spain at the end of this month.
The GSMA estimates that the Mobile World Congress boosted the local Barcelona economy by around €470 million (US$520 million) past year, as delegates pack the city's hotels, wine and dine contacts and pile into taxis to the sprawling Fira trade fair ground that hosts the event.
The company said it would instead hold separate events in the "near future" to unveil its new mobile products.
On the other hand, LG issued a statement which explains that it's made a decision to "withdraw from exhibiting and participating in MWC 2020", "with the health of its employees, partners, and customers foremost in mind". This decision will prevent needlessly exposing hundreds of LG employees to global travel, which most health experts have advised.
Industry analyst Ben Wood, from CCS Insight, said LG's decision was a "big development" for the show, adding that he hoped it would not cause a "domino effect with other companies".
In a statement Tuesday, GSMA, the trade group that puts on Mobile World Congress, said it is "continuing to monitor and assess the potential impact of the coronavirus", and announced several new health precautions, but said so far there has been "minimal impact".
The coronavirus has also reportedly disrupted the MWC plans for the Chinese vendor ZTE.
Mainland China has reported more than 24,000 confirmed cases, while more than 150 cases have been confirmed in two dozen countries and regions around the world.
GSMA's statement mentions the additional hygiene measures the organization has taken to mitigate the spread of the virus, including increased disinfection, onsite medical support, and providing more sanitizing and disinfecting products on site.
The association this week announced measures to help prevent the spread of the virus across the Congress's three main venues, including changing microphones between speakers and advising all attendees to adopt a "no-handshake policy".