Ina Fried

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China’s ZTE Introduces First U.S. Tablet, the $99 Optik for Sprint

ZTE, the fast-growing Chinese phone maker, on Thursday announced its first tablet for the U.S. market.

The Optik, for Sprint, will sell for $99 with a two-year contract, or $349 without a contract. It runs the Honeycomb version of Android, packs a dual-core Qualcomm chip, front and rear cameras and a 7-inch screen.

ZTE has laid out some ambitious goals, both globally and in North America. The company says it wants to become a player in hotspots, phones and tablets here.

“That’s our strategy this year,” ZTE USA chief Lixin Cheng told AllThingsD last month.

In a statement on Thursday, Cheng said that the Optik should make tablets available to a new range of customers.

Whether it can do that, or will instead just become one of many low-cost Android tablets, remains to be seen.


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik