On 12nd July, MediaTek whose phone chips  and “Turn-key”  (from chips to software design) solution has enabled hundreds of Chinese Shanzhai phone manufacturers to make phones easily, made an announcement saying that it joined the Open Handset Alliance and decided to play with Android market.

One month later, in a talk with a friend from MediaTek, I have been told that MediaTek has finished the development of its Android-powered 3G phone chip. “This will drag the Android phone price down to $100 or even less”, he said.

Interesting enough, yesterday the first MediaTek’s Android phone (T3333a) was spotted in Shenzhen’s Shanzhai market. The rumor also revealed its specs, Android 2.1, Dual-Sim supported, RAM 256M+ROM 512M.

With the strong connection with Shanzhai phone manufacturers, will we see MediaTek repeats another success in Chinese phone market? and will Android eventually become the replacement of Shangzhai’s phone OS? There is possibility, but we have to note that the Chinese mobile market is changing rapidly.

1. The smart phone market has been re-defined. Nokia is still there, together with the ‘closed’ Apple’s iPhone and the tens of ‘open’ Android supporters (brands include Lenova, HTC etc).

2. Educating the millions of Shanzhan users could be challenging? Touch screen and multi-threads are fancy, but are they for geeks only? Would low-education and low-income Shanzhan users like it? Is Android too advanced beyond those users’ need?

3. Like Nokia, Motorola etc, most likely MediaTek will soon spend effort on its own Android application market. It would be a good news for Android application developers, but as a late comer in the hyped Chinese app store market and every app market operator is hungry for good applications and developers, MediaTek is mission might not be easy.

4. App store is also a game-changing strategy in mobile phone market. The strategy to operate the app stores will be the key to succeed. And whether the users could quickly accept the new ways of playing with apps is another question.

But one thing is for sure, Android phone market is growing superb fast and it will be the No.1 target for any parties in Chinese market.

[image via Gigjets]

Gang Lu

Dr. Gang Lu - Founder of TechNode. He's a Blogger, a Geek, a PhD and a Speaker, with passion in Tech, Internet and R'N'R.

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8 Comments

  1. $100 is still too expensive. I talked to some design houses in Shanghai and they say low-education and low income people would only pay 400RMB at most for a cell phone. And cell phones at that price already have everything these people need. By the way, I saw in HuaQiang North today some Pad running Android cost around 550RMB only.

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