ZTE Gigabit Phone Launched at MWC 2017, World’s First 5G-Ready Smartphone

Chinese telecoms giant ZTE unveiled Sunday what it said is the world’s first smartphone compatible with the lightening-fast 5G mobile Internet service that networks expect to have up and running by 2020.

ZTE Gigabit Phone Launched at MWC 2017, World's First 5G-Ready Smartphone

The company said the Gigabit Phone is the first smartphone capable of download speeds reaching up to 1 gigabit per second (Gbps) – up to 10 times faster than the first generation of 4G services widely in use today.

The device, unveiled in Barcelona in northeastern Spain on the eve of the start on Monday of the Mobile World Congress, the world’s biggest mobile fair, will allow for 360-degree panoramic Virtual Reality video and fast downloads of ultra Hi-Fi music and videos.

“With the new device, the way people stay connected will be changed forever. Focusing on 5G technologies will be one of the key priorities of ZTE’s global development,” a ZTE spokesman said.

Tech firms are racing to develop products that will be compatible with 5G, shorthand for the fifth generation of networks, which promise blazing fast connectivity for a generation used to streaming movies and TV directly to phones.

South Korean carrier KT Corp aims to offer trial 5G services during the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

The first large-scale commercial deployment of the technology is expected in 2020.

Forrester analyst Thomas Husson said ZTE was using the phone to “showcase innovation” and “offer a glimpse into the future when people will be able to download full movies in seconds” but it was not likely to be a big seller.

“The sad reality is that this smartphone will not end up in consumers’ pockets because both 5G and Virtual Reality are still years away to be a mass-market consumer reality,” he added.

Founded in 1985, ZTE offers telecom equipment and services and has customers in more than 160 countries, according to the company.

It is the only Chinese smartphone vendor with a meaningful presence in the United States, where its 10 percent market share makes it the fourth-largest vendor.

ZTE Blade V7, Blade V7 Lite First Look

ZTE at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona unveiled two new smartphones, as well as a . The company expanded its youth-centric Blade series with the launch of the new Blade V7 and Blade V7 Lite. We got to spend some time with the new ZTE smartphones on the floors of the MWC 2016 trade show, and you can check out our initial impressions in the video.

The Chinese telecommunications giant said that the ZTE Blade V7 will go on sale this summer in Germany, Mexico, South Africa, and Spain, among other markets. The ZTE Blade V7 Lite will launch in Russia first, before being made available this spring in Germany, Mexico, Spain, and Thailand.

The ZTE Blade V7 has a metal body which tapers to only 3.5mm thick. It features a 5.2-inch full-HD display and runs Android Marshmallow with ZTE’s custom skin. It’s powered by an octa-core MediaTek MT6753 SoC, with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage, which can be expanded with a microSD card. There’s also dual-SIM functionality with 4G.

You also get a 13-megapixel rear camera with phase detection autofocus and a 5-megapixel front camera. The Blade V7 is powered by a 2500mAh battery and will be available in Gold and Silver.

On the other hand, the Blade V7 Lite sports a smaller 5-inch HD display but gains a circular fingerprint sensor at the back, and an LED flash for the front camera

It’s powered by a quad-core MediaTek MT6735P processor and has 2GB of RAM. There are 8-megapixel cameras sensors for both, the front and rear of the phone. Other features are similar to what the Blade V7 offers.