ZTE hopes to become the world’s No. 3 handset vendor by 2013, an executive said Thursday. The company expects its handsets, tablets and data cards will jump 40 percent this year. Although ZTE has yet to launch any smartphones in the U.S. market, it showcased 5 Android smartphone models at CES. ZTE’s Light tablet runs Android 2.2 using a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. ZTE aims to launch 3G and 4G smartphones and tablets with Tier 1 operators later this year.
“By being manufactured in China, our product can be 25 per cent cheaper than our rivals. We expected our business to grow at the rate of 30 per cent annually and become one of the top two players in India in the next three years,” D K Ghosh, chairman of ZTE Telecom India said.
The company still feels it is being shut out of the U.S. infrastructure market for political reasons. Sprint Nextel selected Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson and Samsung for its network modernization project in December after reports emerged that Commerce Secretary Gary Locke called Sprint CEO Dan Hesse to discuss the government’s concerns about awarding the contract to a Chinese firm.
ZTE and Huawei expect to make big inroad into the Indian and Chinese market. Both ZTE and its larger Chinese rival Huawei were among the vendors bidding for Sprint’s contract. In Q3 of 2009, Huawei surpassed Nokia Siemens to became the No. 2 supplier of global mobile network gear after market leader Ericsson.