ZTE arrived at the latest iteration of Mobile World Congress to announce a plethora of new products and showcase multiple hi-tech solutions, including its prototype of a 5G-ready smartphone. While the company already managed to break the gigabit mark last year, its latest invention supports download speeds of up to 1.2Gbps, with ZTE describing it as the first glimpse at "the mobile 5G future." The company hasn't shared many specifics about the handset itself but was more interested in talking about its general vision for the next generation of mobile networks, claiming mobile devices of the future won't just offer high-speed download rates but will also be able to leverage 5G networks in order to "see, hear, think, and understand" what their users want. The 5G phone prototype that's being showcased at MWC 2018 is the latest result of ZTE's efforts to commercialize such an offering by early 2019.
In the grander scheme of things, the Chinese tech giant is presently exploring half a dozen fields in the artificial intelligence segment: machine learning, image recognition, speech recognition, mobile computing, content generation, and data security. Its activities in all six of those areas should help it bring next-generation smartphones to the market, with the majority of their new capabilities being enabled by 5G. The company's MWC 2018 demo area will also feature a 5G-enabled car meant to provide attendees with a brief look at the future of connected driving, seamlessly transitioning between various networks and using data to optimize its performance and the traveling experience of its driver and passengers.
The Shenzhen-based consumer electronics manufacturer also came to Barcelona to showcase its first foldable smartphone in the form of the two-screen Axon M that's set to be released in select European markets this spring after already debuting in the United States in late 2017 and making its way to ZTE's home country earlier this year. The newly announced ZTE Blade V9 is still expected to be the star of the show, boasting a relatively bezel-free design with an 83.6-percent screen-to-body ratio and Android 8.1 Oreo. The 5.7-inch mid-ranger will be accompanied by the ZTE Blade V9 VITA, a slightly smaller Android handset with a 5.45-inch FHD+ display which is also set to be released this spring.