ZTE is a coming force in the world of smartphones manufacturers and figures just released about its performance in the first six months of 2011, seem to confirm this.
In the first two quarters of 2011, ZTE shipped 35 million handsets worldwide out of a total of 60 million “smart terminals” shipped. At the beginning of the year ZTE outlined its smart terminal strategy which included smartphones, tablets and Internet TV box devices. The 35 million handsets shipped represents a 30 percent year-on-year increase from the same period last year.
ZTE reports that it has sold five million of these smart terminals in the six months to 31 June, which represents a 400 per cent increase. A lot of this growth is down to the ZTE Blade (sold in the UK as the San Francisco Orange) which is available in 50 countries through 80 operators worldwide.
The Blade’s sales in China’s are currently at around 16,000 units per day, making it the best selling Android handset in the country. Globally 2.5 million Blade handsets have been sold to date and the company expects to break the five million barrier this year.
The successor to the popular Blade will be the ZTE Skate which will be initially sold in the UK as the Orange Monte Carlo. However ZTE announced last month it was planning on selling own-branded handsets here for the first time, teaming up with Brightpoint, and the Skate will be the flagship model.
While ZTE has not announced an official release date yet, Brightpoint reseller Clove Technology has provisionally stated 19 September as a release date and a price tag of £250 for the 4.3in smartphone.
It is in the US where ZTE made most gains in the first half of 2011, seeing a sales increase of 300 per cent. According to research group IDC, ZTE is now the fifth largest vendor of smartphones for the first six months of the year and only Apple also experienced growth of 30 per cent or more.
ZTE Executive Vice President He Shiyou stated: “We are pleased with the success of the Blade worldwide and of our other handsets in other major markets. We aim to launch over 30 smart terminals during the remainder of 2011, including mid to high-end smartphones such as the ZTE Skate, a smartphone harnessing Windows Phone 7 and TD-LTE dual-module and dual-waiting models.”