The ZTE Open is the first official FireFox OS smartphone handset. Photo: AFP/ZTE / Mozilla
Premium handsets from Nokia, LG and Lenovo are poised to launch in the coming weeks, as are the first phones to sport the Firefox OS operating system.
The way the tech press reports the smartphone market, consumers could be forgiven for believing that the Samsung Galaxy SIV and the Apple iPhone 5 are the only two devices in the world. But competition is building and a number of flagship phones from a number of manufacturers are set to launch over the coming months.
The first handsets to support the truly open source OS officially go on sale this week courtesy of Spanish start-up Geeksphone. European visitors to its website can order a Keon, which sports a Qualcomm Snapdragon 1Ghz processor, 4 GB of memory and 512 MB of RAM, a 3.5-inch touch screen and a 3-megapixel camera for €119, or the flagship Peak, which boast a 4.3-inch touch screen, faster processor and front and rear facing cameras for €180.
Though open to anyone, the handsets are currently aimed at developers as the Firefox OS ecosystem is still in its infancy -- although support is growing all the time and the project could give Android a run for its money, particularly in emerging South American, Asian and African markets.
True to its word, the Finnish company is about to launch a ‘hero' phone in the US -- meaning not only a flagship device but also the company's most important phone. The Lumia 928 will ditch the current polycarbonate shells of earlier Windows Phone 8 handset efforts in favor of metal and will be available exclusively on Verizon's LTE network from May. Although exact details are still unclear, sources suggest that it will have a higher resolution screen than the current Lumia flagship 920, as well as a slightly faster processor and even better camera functions and all for $199 with a contract.
The Chinese PC maker has confirmed that its flagship smartphone, the Ideaphone K900, which it revealed earlier this year at the International Consumer Electronics Show, will be launching on May 6. The handset caused a stir in January for its build quality and impressive 5.5-inch full HD display. Lenovo sees the device as a direct competitor to the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy SIV and, most importantly, the iPhone5, so expect it to be priced accordingly in both China and the US -- the first two territories in which it will be available.
Flushed from the success of the Nexus Four handset, LG will be hoping to maintain its momentum with the launch of its LG Optimus G Pro. It features an IPS Plus Full HD (1920 x 1080) display, quad-core 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor, 2.1MP front-facing camera, 13MP rear camera with LED flash, LTE connectivity, NFC, 2GB of RAM and 32GB of internal memory and will be the subject of an official launch event in New York on May 1 before hitting the shelves in the US on May 6.