Gigabyte isn't a household name in the Android community but they are hoping to become a real player in the near future. Gigabyte Communications, which is a subsidiary of Gigabyte Technology – of motherboard fame – had a cup of coffee with the Android operating system way back in the summer of 2010. It was last year though when they made their initial mark.
At last year's Computex 2012 the company launched a pair of Ice Cream Sandwich devices, the GSmart G1342 and the GSmart G1362. These were the world's first dual-SIM, dual-standby phones on Android 4.0. Now they appear poised to make larger gains using the Android as a springboard.
Gigabyte expects to launch ten different smartphones this year, hopefully resulting in total ales of 400,000 units. This number doubles their 2012 shipment number of 200,000 when they had six different models.
These handsets, using platforms developed by Qualcomm and MediaTek, will have screen sizes ranging from 3.5 to 5-inches. This means that they are planning on hitting every category from entry-level devices to "Phablets". According to the company their "smartphone business in 2013 will rely on R&D capability in Taiwan and supply chain in China." They are also promoting the fact that they have obtained licences for official Google services, meaning that these phones will have all the good stuff we've grown accustomed to with Android from GMail to Google Maps.
Gigabyte plans to start off Q1 2013 with the release of a pair of devices, Maya M1 and Rio R1. They plan on having these phones available in almost all of Eastern Europe through a partnership with top mobile distributor Asbis. Other markets will include Israel, Turkey and Dubai.
The key specs for the Maya M1 are:
MediaTek MT6577 1GHz dual-core processor
8-megapixel rear cameraAdvertisement
4.5-inch IPS qHD touch screen
The key specs for the Rio R1 are:
Qualcomm MSM825 1GHz dual-core processor
4-inch WVGA touch screenAdvertisement
5-megapixel rear camera
Gigabyte Communications is also planning on a line of ten inch Qualcomm based Android tablets which will be used specifically for education in the aforementioned markets.
While not for most of us, what do you guys think of these devices?