Smartphones play an essential role in social and economic progress. Today, one-in-five consumers in North America are “Smartphone-dependent” – meaning they lack traditional home broadband service and rely on their smartphone for internet access. For these individuals, smartphones provide a primary means for paying bills, searching for jobs, accessing health care, transportation, and education, and fostering participation or inclusion in civic engagement and society.
Smartphone dependency is ever more apparent during the COVID19 pandemic. The majority of smartphone-dependents are primarily younger adults and lower-income Americans, contributing to the “homework gap.” According to Pew Research, three-in-ten parents with homebound schoolchildren (29%) report that it is at least somewhat likely their children will have to do their schoolwork on a cellphone.
When we think about the future, we imagine people like us, and not the groups of unseen people.* ZTE is rare in the world of technology as it was founded by one of those unseen people – and he too imagined himself and people like him when he thought about the future. When he founded ZTE, he did so to ensure communication technology was accessible for people like him. This founding principle, from day one, has never changed.
For the world to be its very best, underserved markets must be cared for and empowered. ZTE fills a void by providing affordable devices that empower communities and individuals to connect, and through connection, the opportunity to rise above current limitations.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the percentage change in dollars spent on cellular phone services from 2007 to 2014 consistently increases. However, those under 25 years consistently accounted for the largest share of those who spent the most.
We invest in maintaining this vision – which means we often forgo spending large budgets on advertising and marketing campaigns that consumers end up paying for. Instead, we invest in the research and development that brings products to market that deliver meaningful value through advanced features, modern design, and improved user experiences that are all in balance with an accessible price.