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In January 2012 China’s major wireless OEM Huawei announced that it intended to enter the U.S. wireless market this year, with several new CDMA/LTE products including smartphones. At CES 2012 in Las Vegas Huawei unveiled its newest flagship smartphone, the Ascend P1 S, and announced its intent to take the Ascend brand to the U.S. and European markets. The Ascend P1 S runs on the latest Android version 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich” Android platform and sports a dual-core 1.5 GHz Texas Instruments OMAP processor, a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED 960 x 540 touchscreen, 8-megapixel BSI rear-facing and 1.3-megapixel HD front-facing cameras, and has support for UMTS and HSPA+ networks on 850/900/1700/1900 and 2100 MHz bands. This is all in a package that is just 6.68mm thick. Huawei is targeting the Ascend P1 S at the high end of the smartphone market, hoping to compete with heavyweights such as Apple and Samsung. The company claims that it is currently in the middle of talks with U.S. wireless carriers about carrying the Ascend P1 S, and is hopeful that it will be in the U.S. market by the middle of the year. Huawei’s executives have also stated that they are currently working with U.S. advertising and marketing firms and will start a major marketing push in early May.
Huawei is not the only Chinese wireless company to make a major push into the North American market in 2012. For example, in December 2011, China Telecom announced that it would enter the U.S. wireless market as a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) in 2012. The company plans to target the Chinese-American population, as well as students and tourists who travel between the two nations on a regular basis.
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