ZTE said it will sell its first LTE smartphone through China Mobile Hong Kong at the end of this month, as the Chinese vendor continues its push into the higher-end smartphone market.
The company announced Tuesday that the Grand X LTE (T82), ZTE’s first single-chip LTE handset, will arrive in Hong Kong on August 31 for HK $3,180 ($410), before being rolled out to the rest of Asia in the third quarter.
Dr. Luo Zhongsheng, VP of ZTE handset division and president of Asia-Pacific-CIS region, said the company will roll out more LTE products over the next few months to tap the fast growing market for 4G devices.
“The development of LTE has been growing at a pace faster than we expected. At present, over 60% of ZTE’s terminal devices sold in US are LTE products and similar trends are seen in markets like Japan and Australia, in where the proportions of LTE products to our terminal devices portfolio will continue to grow,” Luo said.
That said, the company expected that LTE will contribute to at least over 20% of the company’s terminal sales in 2013, Luo told telecomasia.net.
He said ZTE will launch a LTE tablet in September. The company will also announce the commercial launch of dual-mode FDD/TDD LTE data card in the fourth quarter, with handset scheduled for launch in the first quarter of 2013.
The company also plans to introduce a sample handset that supports voice over LTE (VoLTE) in the fourth quarter. Depends on mobile carriers’ demand, the VoLTE handset could be commercially available as soon as in the first quarter of 2013, Luo noted.
The company, which now holds 7% of all global LTE patents among vendors, is offering a full series of 4G/LTE terminals products, including tablet PC, pocket WiFi hotspot, modem and broadband customer premises equipment, Luo added.