ZTE's new flagship phone to be presented as state gift to UK: Report

Updated: 2015-10-23 13:07

By Liu Zheng(chinadaily.com.cn)

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ZTE's new flagship phone to be presented as state gift to UK: Report

Photo taken on July 14, 2015 shows the new Axon phone during its unveiling ceremony in New York, the United States. [Photo/Xinhua]

Chinese tech company ZTE's new flagship Axon will reportedly be presented as one of the official gifts to the British government during the four-day visit of President Xi Jinping to the United Kingdom, according to tech website gsmarena.com.

"It will be presented as a gift," a spokesman of the company confirmed with China Daily about the report.

ZTE has a history of being given as a gift to world leaders.

According to the spokesman, AXON was used by delegates during President Xi's visit to the United States in September. A year earlier, President Xi gave ZTE's devices as state gifts to officials in Tajikistan. During the same month, former US President Jimmy Carter was presented with a ZTE device during his visit to ZTE's Shanghai R&D Center.

This year, ZTE's AXON devices have been given as gifts to Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, Chairman of Bosnia and Herzegovina's tripartite Presidency Dragan Covic, and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn Boshe.

During a state visit to Germany in March 2014, China's first lady Peng Liyuan was seen using a ZTE Nubia Z5 Mini.

"AXON being given as a state gift is recognition of ZTE as one of China's top smartphone manufacturers, as the gift must meet the highest standards in terms of quality and innovation in order to be presented," said the spokesman.

The device includes "dual track" -- high fidelity sound recording and playback, as well as dual rear-cameras that capture high resolution images and videos. The phone is recognized as the world's first smartphone that can be unlocked with three different biometric authentication options -- fingerprint, voice control and eye-scan.

The flagship AXON won the "User Experience Gold Award" at the IFA 2015, known as one of the world's largest consumer electronics fair held annually in Berlin.

ZTE's products are among the cheaper phones of choice at three of the big four US carriers. The company is quietly becoming a force in the US by selling good-enough phones at low prices, according to Bloomberg.

The company announced Thursday that it is launching a 64GB model of the ZTE Axon Pro in the US market. ZTE has been described by zdnet.com as one that listens openly to feedback and quickly responds to consumers.

According to consulting company Strategy Analytics, the US was the best-performing overseas market for ZTE last year. Shipments of its devices rose in the high double digits, even as competitors' shipments were flat or lower, the research firm said. ZTE had 20 million active users in the US as of Dec 31.

"ZTE claimed about 8 percent of America's smartphone market in the second quarter of this year," said the US market research firm International Data Corporation. That ranks the company fourth among smartphone makers overall in the US market, behind Apple, Samsung and LG.

ZTE said that over the next three years ZTE will continue to prioritize its superpower markets -- China and US markets, while increasing its investment in 13 of its key markets worldwide.

By 2020, ZTE aims to rank among the top three smartphone manufacturers in its key markets.