ZTE’s handset business has seen steady development and profit growth during 2012. Industry analyst IDC reported that ZTE had shipped 65 million handsets in 2012, accounting for 3.8 percent of the global handset market and confirming ZTE as one of the top 4 handset producers.
“We know that our future success means we have to build the ZTE brand, and another target for us is to be a top 5 vendor in terms of brand awareness and reputation within the next three years,” said He Shiyou, EVP and Head of the Mobile Devices Division at ZTE. “2013 is the final year of our three-year transformation into a high-end smartphone brand, but we have a lot of building still to do.”
“As I have said before, we aim to be a top 3 handset manufacturer by 2015. This target has not changed,” he added.
Revenues from China, the US and Europe now account for more than 70 percent of ZTE’s handset revenues, with the majority of those sales being smartphones. ZTE has strategic partnerships with 47 among the global top 50 carriers and is building a worldwide distribution channel for sales of ZTE-branded phones through online and high street retailers. Revenues from distribution channels continue to grow and recently passed the mark of making up more than 15% of total ZTE handset revenues for the first time.
ZTE’s transformation into an own-brand smartphone market player has shown strong results, with 2012 smartphones sales up 100 percent on 2011, and with smartphone revenues accounting for 70 percent of total handset revenues. The company aims to increase the smartphone share of its overall corporate handset sales volume by 60 percent in 2013, with Europe and North America accounting for 60 percent of ZTE’s overall handset sales outside China.
“In 2013 we will target the high-end product market, build our brand, further enhance our hardware and software design capabilities, and rapidly build our routes to market through multiple channels, pursuing both the OEM/ODM and carrier/channel markets,” said He. “The main trends at the top end of the handset market are what we call the 4S trends – slim, screen, speed and safe. Slim means reducing device thickness and being stylish without affecting the battery capability; screen obvious means large, high-definition screens, which is one of the most important characteristics for consumers; speed means that as much as possible we will have dual-core, quad-core or even eight-core platforms in the future; and safe means that even with a large number of installed apps, consumers do not have to worry about the safety of their device. ZTE will focus on product development in these areas to satisfy consumer needs to the greatest extent possible.”
In 2013, ZTE will also launch four websites to further develop its consumer presence – www.ztedevices.com for the global market, www.ztedevices.com.cn for China, www.ztedevices.com/us for the US and www.ztedevices.com/uk for the UK. Over the next two to three years, ZTE expects to develop websites in a further 30 strategic countries around the world to provide product information and support, with all sites optimised for mobile device access.
ZTE will launch a further model in the Grand series of high-end smartphones at Mobile World Congress, following the launch of the Grand S LTE (4G) smartphone with a 13MP camera and five-inch screen at CES 2013 in Las Vegas in January.