Richardson, Texas — ZTE USA will sell one of its flagship Grand series smartphones through a U.S. carrier for the first time with today’s launch of the LTE-equipped Grand S Pro through Chicago-based U.S. Cellular.
The Android phone is priced at $99 with two-year contract and $249 without contract in the carrier’s stores and website. Plans for availability through indirect channels weren’t disclosed.
The first ZTE Grand-series phone available in the U.S. market was the Grand S, but it was launched last October as an unlocked HSPA+ model available through Amazon and Walmart.com.
ZTE is positioning the Grand S Pro as a high-performing but affordable LTE model with quality design.
The Android 4.3 device features 2.3GHz quad-core Qualcomm CPU, 2GB RAM, 5-inch HD 1280 by 720 IPS display, 13-megapixel main camera with 1080p video capture, 2-megapixel front camera, 2,300 mAH battery, 8GB internal memory, 32GB MicroSD slot, Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, MHL output, NFC, Android Beam and Wi-Fi hot spot. It also features LTE operation in the 850MHz, 1,900MHz, 700MHz and AWS bands and CDMA operation.
The main camera features autofocus, LED flash, zero shutter latency, auto exposure and pro mode advanced settings similar to those found in professional cameras, including metering, focusing separation and compass-assisted composition. With ZTE’s My Easy Access feature, the camera and other frequently used apps can be launched from the lock screen.
For the global market, ZTE launched its first Grand series phones in 2012.
“The Grand S Pro proves that it is possible to deliver a high-performing device, without the high price tag,” said Lixin Cheng, ZTE chairman/CEO.
ZTE positions itself as the fourth-largest cellphone vendor in the U.S. when combining sales of ZTE-brand phones and ZTE-made carrier-brand phones. The company also said it is the second largest vendor in the in the U.S. prepaid segment.
The company’s ZTE-brand and white-label phones are sold through AT&T, Boost Mobile, Cricket, MetroPCS, Net10, Sprint, StraightTalk, Virgin Mobile, TracFone and U.S. Cellular.
The company sold its first phone in the U.S. in 2008 through MetroPCS.