You thought quad-core smartphones are impressive? Wait until the next year.
The latest rumor from Asia is that ZTE is working on a smartphone codenamed “Apache”, equipped with 8-core CPU from Mediatek. According to MyDrivers.com, Mediatek beat Qualcomm and NVIDIA in the battle for the heart&brains of the next ZTE flagship with, as yet unannounced, ARM15 MT6599 chip manufactured with TSMC’s 28nm tech.
Other ZTE Apache specs include 1080p HD resolution display, 13 megapixel camera and WCDMA/4G LTE/TD-SCDMA support.
If the rumor is correct, it means we are already in the round two of an attempt by Chinese vendors to breakout of the cheap/domestic market supplier category, onto the world stage. Round one this year was more or less a flop. Both Huawei and ZTE increased their smartphone market shares by a lot. But most of that happened on the backs of their low margin, cheap devices most of us expect to get from those brands. While top of the line smartphones like Huawei D-Quad, announced with such fanfare in February at Mobile World Congress, failed to make an impact.
But, the one failure doesn’t matter. It just makes the challengers more hungry. Chinese are just following the playbook of Japanese and Korean giants like Sony and Samsung. Which were scrappy and cheap suppliers in their early days too. And, with the help of its compatriots, Mediatek seems to be getting ready to take on Qualcomm and NVIDIA in chipsets, too.
Will it work this time? I don’t know. Huawei’s device sounded very impressive in February too, until they failed to deliver it for more than 6 months. Let’s wait and see.
But sooner or later ZTE and Huawei, maybe even Meizu, Oppo and Xiaomi, will figure it out. And smartphone wars will get even more interesting.
If you liked the post, you might find these interesting too:
- MediaTek joins the Open Handset Alliance. An onslaught of cheap Android smartphones to follow?
- Nvidia’s Kai platform pushed to smartphones this year. Low-cost quad-core Tegra 3 handsets coming
- Huawei Ascend Y 200T gets certified on its way to China Mobile, will bring ICS to the masses
- ZTE plans to ship 40 million smartphones this year
- NVIDIA to start making Tegra smartphones and tablets itself. As white label boxes sold through local partners