updated 04:15 pm EST, Thu December 30, 2010
Russian ZTE phone said beating Apple at GPS
Russian firm AFK Sistema said it had co-developed a phone that would purportedly beat the iPhone 4. Shown to Prime Minister Putin this week, the ZTE-made A918 Android phone uses Russia's native GLONASS GPS system and a matching 90 nanometer Qualcomm chip to get directions. The win over Apple reportedly comes from the accuracy, which at 93 percent is much higher than a claimed 64 percent for the iPhone 4.
Well-known Russian leaker Eldar Murtazin has unearthed further details and revealed that most of the specifications are well behind the iPhone. The full touch phone is budget-oriented and uses a 3.2-inch 320x240 screen, a two-megapixel camera and Android 2.1, two revisions back from the Google Nexus S' Android 2.3. The 90nm process is also well behind that used in phones from Europe, Taiwan and the US, where 65nm or 45nm chips are more common.
Cost will be the main focus at the equivalent of $359, although Murtazin added that the A916 with regular GPS cost much less at $245. AFK Sistema is providing early versions of the A918 to "friends" as soon as March but won't start volume production until past the mid-point of 2011. It's unlikely the GLONASS-aware version will leave Russia, but ZTE hasn't said how widespread the A916 will be. [via MobileCrunch]