Taking a page from fellow Chinese manufacturer Huawei’s playbook, ZTE is looking to shift their focus away from saturating the market with budget-friendly smartphones and gravitating toward high-end devices in 2013. The company forecasts shipments of 50 million smartphones in 2013, with the category driving 70 percent of its device sales business. This will include the recently unveiled Grand S as well as a newly-teased phablet known as the Grand Memo.
We expect to hear more about the ZTE Grand Memo at Mobile World Congress, but for now we know it sports a 5.7-inch display and measures in at 8mm thick. The phone should help ZTE capitalize on the growing trend of mid-size devices falling somewhere between a phone and tablet.
ZTE has already risen to become the world’s fourth-largest handset maker, but the company hopes that pushing high-end devices will lead to an increase in revenue as well. In 2012 ZTE posted a net loss of 2.9 billion yuan (~$467 million). The new approach could lead to a 40 percent increase in smartphone revenues, helping to narrow that margin.