ZTE aiming to grow U.S. market share with higher-end devices, carrier partnershipsAlex Wagner - Senior News Editor
Here in the U.S., ZTE is a manufacturer that's usually associated with lower-end devices that don't often get much of the spotlight from carriers. That's something that the company is hoping to change in the future, though, as Executive Vice President He Shiyou recently told the Wall Street Journal that ZTE is planning to bring higher-end devices to the U.S. and improve its ties with our operators. ZTE's goal is to make the U.S. smartphone market its top source of smartphone revenue, a spot that's currently occupied by China, which accounts for around 40 percent of its phone revenue. While ZTE didn't provide exact figures for its Chinese revenue, it did say that it's "a little bit higher than double" its U.S. revenue.
One of the ways that ZTE hopes to grow its presence in the U.S. is by becoming a "strategic partner" with the four major carriers. That title, according to ZTE's He, would mean that his company has 15 percent of the operator's business. ZTE's current U.S. market share is said to sit at around five percent.
While those of us in the U.S. typically see the ZTE name printed on more affordable devices, the company does have some high-end handsets. Two of its latest smartphones, the Nubia Z5 and Grand S, feature 5-inch 1080p displays and 13-megapixel cameras. And while the Nubia isn't expected to see a release in the U.S., the Grand S is due to see an official unveiling at CES next month and could still make an appearance on shelves here. With a 5-inch 1080p display and a body that measures 6.9mm thick, the Grand S could certainly help ZTE to start changing its image here in the U.S. Do you think that devices like the Grand S could help ZTE compete with the likes of Apple and Samsung here in the U.S.?