Chinese equipment makers Huawei and ZTE, hoping to cash in on the white-hot smartphone market, each separately said they are preparing to release more devices running on Google's Android platform.
Huawei on Thursday announced its first smartphone specifically designed for the global market, the Android-powered Ideos. The device, which was developed in collaboration with Google, runs Android 2.2 and features a 2.8-inch touchscreen. It will be made in both CDMA and GSM variants. The Ideos will go on sale in Hong Kong next Friday, and is expected to be available later this year in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia. Huawei, the world's No. 3 infrastructure vendor, said the phone--which features WiFi and mobile hotspot capability for up to eight devices--is designed to be an entry-level phone and likely will be priced at between $100 and $200 depending on carrier subsidies.
Interestingly, the Ideos features 850/1700/1900 MHz CDMA bands, which could make it a fit for Leap Wireless (NASDAQ:LEAP) or MetroPCS (NASDAQ:PCS).
ZTE, Huawei's smaller Chinese rival, said it also is increasing its Android ambitions. He Shiyou, head of ZTE's mobile terminals business, told the Wall Street Journal that ZTE will release an Android tablet later this year in Europe, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region. The device will have a 7-inch screen. The company is hoping to release similar products in North America.
ZTE said its first-half handset sales jumped 40 percent, driven by demand in both China and international markets. The company shipped 28 million handsets, with 17 million, or fully 60 percent, going to international markets. ZTE said it released 10 Android phones in the first half of the year with carrier partners in France, Brazil and other countries.
ZTE hopes Verizon launch will springboard its U.S ambitions
ZTE eyes U.S. handset market as part of worldwide growth strategy
ZTE: U.S. smartphone launch remains on horizon
ZTE in smartphone discussions with Verizon, others
Huawei to make Symbian, Android smartphones in 2009