HTC has beaten out ZTE, Nokia, and other vendors hoping to capitalize on the growing Chinese market.
After opening a flagship store in Beijing yesterday, HTC is said to have started accepting preorders for the HTC Titan. The move reportedly made the Titan the first Windows Phone sold in China, beating out the line of devices that HTC's competitors have planned for the country this year.
According to Chinese site Weibo, which first reported on the story, HTC is selling the device for about $700 without a contract.
The HTC Titan is one of the more capable Windows Phone 7 devices, featuring a 4.7-inch display, a 1.5GHz Qualcomm processor, and an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera. In a review of the device in November, CNET's Nicole Lee gave it four stars out of five, or an "excellent" rating. She said that the Titan's "big and beautiful design and impressive features make it one of the better Windows Phone offerings."
It's no surprise that Windows Phone vendors are trying to target China. The country is a rapidly growing market opportunity for vendors, and last week, its Ministry of Industry and Information Technology revealed that it now has a billion mobile connections.
Looking ahead, there's no telling how Windows Phone will appeal to Chinese consumers. However, Microsoft revealed at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last week that it has lowered the minimum requirements to build a Windows Phone, enhancing its chances of appealing to vendors that want to bring cheaper devices to store shelves to attract budget-conscious consumers.
More and cheaper devices might play a key role in getting Microsoft at least into the discussion of which companies will be able to achieve success in China.