Google didn’t announce anything at Mobile World Congress 2017 but the software giant made sure to leave its presence around the expo. How did it do that? Only with the brilliance of organising the great android treasure hunt that has attendees scurrying around everywhere looking for Android pins and stickers.

Google decided to create a passport of sorts with empty spots for 90 stickers that one could find at various partner booths. From Samsung to LG to Android helpers, stickers and pins were everywhere.

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Complete the passport with bronze, silver and gold levels of stickers and gain cool Android swag. Not to forget, awesome Android mascot pins. I decided to take up the challenge and got my passport, ready to travel to various locations within the trade show.

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Sounds easy right? Just follow the above map, collect the pins/ stickers, ??? and profit. Not quite. Different stickers were released in limited quantities every day. With hundreds of Android travellers collecting stickers, the booths had a shortage that left me and many like me travelling to booths finding nothing but sheer disappointment. Well, not nothing of course. They had their own launches but obviously those pale in comparison to finding a sticker one didn’t have.

The lack of stickers led to furious trading between the Android travellers. If you had extra rare stickers, you could trade them for stickers you didn’t have. I too traded a kidney for an ultra rare sticker. FYI, It wasn’t my own kidney, I’m not that crazy.

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Over the course of the next few days, and MULTIPLE trips (I do stress on multiple) to the various locations), I finally managed to complete all the pages of my passport on the final day. Here’s proof.

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For my efforts, I won an Android bag with assorted merchandise. Was the bag worth it? Not really. By the end of it, I was exhausted, and my legs hurt so much that I needed crutches to get back home. If I had a choice to do it all again, would I still do it? Hell yeah. Going around searching for pins led me to visit booths I probably wouldn’t have noticed otherwise. Not to forget trading with fellow travellers, discussing the best places to source rare stickers, and mugging unsuspecting weaker attendees for their stickers (and money) made my visit to the Mobile World Congress a more enjoyable experience. Plus, those Android pins sure are cool!

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