10 cell phone companies you've probably never heard of
10 less-known cell phone companies
Geeksphone is a Spanish company that entered the smartphone market in the not-so-distant 2009. Since then, it has released a couple of Android smartphones – The Geeksphone GP1 (now discontinued) and the Geeksphone ZERO, which can be ordered from the company's online store. Rather than relying on any cutting edge hardware to stand out, Geeksphone touts its device as being completely open for modification and for use with any GSM carrier the user prefers.
Emporia is an Austrian company that makes simple, affordable, and easy to use cell phones. And when we say simple, we mean handsets that are stripped down of any kind of advanced features whatsoever. For example, their TALKcomfort model (pictured) has an address book, calculator, LED flashlight, support for sending and receiving texts, and that's about it. With its high contrast screen, loud ringtones, and huge buttons, however, it is a handset suitable for elderly people.
The Verykool brand, which is owned by the California-based InfoSonics, has been around since 2007. Currently, its products are being sold in 20 countries and 5 continents around the world. What you see in the photo is the Verykool s757, which is a 5-inch hybrid between a smartphone and a tablet, powered by an 800MHz processor and Android 2.3.5.
Lumigon is based in Copenhagen, Denmark, and specializes in premium cell phones designed with style and elegance. Their top-of-the-line model is the upcoming Lumigon T2, which is a 3.8-inch handset constructed using stainless steel elements. Something cool about the smartphone is that it has a built-in IR blaster, meaning that you can use it as a remote control. Bang & Olufsen audio technology has been incorporated in order to suit the exquisite taste of music lovers.
India is where the Karbonn company is situated. The smartphone that you see in the photo is the Karbonn KT81 Cosmos, which is an affordable mid-range device. Interestingly, the company is also planning on releasing a budget-friendly tablet running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. The slate will have a 1.2GHz processor, 3G connectivity, camera, and other features while retailing for about $125.
Cell phone company Micromax is based in India as well. It recently introduced a couple of Android 4.0 smartphones tailored for the local market: the 4.3-inch Pixel A90 and the 5-inch Canvas A100. Hardware-wise, neither of them will make one's jaw drop, but their price is definitely tempting – $234 for the former and $180 for the latter.
From the United Arab Emirates we have the i-mate company, and the smartphone you see in the photo is the now discontinued 810-F. Neither the name nor the hardware specs can impress us nowadays, and yes, as you can see it ran on the now obsolete Windows Mobile. However, the handset was so tough that its maker sold each one with a lifetime warranty. Unfortunately, i-mate went out of business in September of 2009.
Blu's smartphones are marketed throughout Latin America, although the company is considering the opportunity to expand its operations even further. The handset in the photo is the Blu Vivo 4.3, which comes with a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 1GHz dual-core processor, 8-megapixel camera, and Android 4.0.
The INQ company started its business in the U.K., but later opened offices in the U.S., Canada, China, and other markets. Its INQ Cloud Touch smartphone (pictured) is made for young people and heavy social network users. Highlights include a 3.5-inch HVGA display, 5-megapixel camera, GPS and 3G connectivity.
And from the great nation of China we have Xiaomi, which won the hearts of many geeks throughout the country with the outstanding value for money ratio of its Android smartphones. The company's Xiaomi Phone 2 is likely to follow the footsteps of its predecessor with its ultra fast Snapdragon S4 Pro processor and $310 price tag.
1. TheLibertine (Posts: 484; Member since: 15 Jan 2012)
The Last One, Xiaomi. I see potential in it.
But... Who's that Apple again? Ah... The one who is in lawsuit now with Samsung and makes great tablets, I remembered.
2. ajac09 (Posts: 1363; Member since: 30 Sep 2009)
Love to see all these makers cross into the US more choices= better pricing. Id love to see one day when i walk into a cell phone store I choose my phone first and then go home and decide on my carrier. And I can choose from the cheap crap phones to the awesome phones that the carriers currently have. Like make it a walmart experience. Do I want the great value galaxy s3 or the real one?
3. lonestrider (Posts: 85; Member since: 31 Mar 2012)
What about Nexian? Mito? Sagem? Have you heard those?
5. JunitoNH (Posts: 865; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)
Boy some of those phone look way better than the S3 design.
6. wendygarett (unregistered)
Why all of this above is android phone? Why?
10. wendygarett (unregistered)
This article is so android biased
I would skip this as well
12. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)
have you seen any other manufacturers using iOS? these manufacturers use android coz its famous and its free... while WP, they need to pay... and there's no other OS that these manufacturers can use...
in the philippines, we got cherry mobile, starmobile,myphone, and torque... they all use android now.. coz its free and famous... and they are very cheap... around 3000 pesos
15. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
There cheap cause there budget handsets.
Unlike oneX. S3. And others.
13. VZWuser76 (Posts: 1301; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
Maybe because Apple doesn't allow iOS on any other manufacturer's hardware. Same for RIM. The only other OS that could be put on any manufacturer's hardware is WP, but since that has hardware requirements, Android is about the only choice. Weren't you saying just yesterday that you were an android user but also collected iPhones? If that's actually true I'm surprised you didn't know this.
26. OptimusOne (Posts: 694; Member since: 22 May 2012)
I thought RIM was going to license blackberry 10?
14. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
ios will never let other company use there OS.
31. The_Godfather (Posts: 146; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)
Cause no one wants to use iOS mate :)
30. The_Godfather (Posts: 146; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)
Wendygarett:- Go and write your own articles then lolzzzz
7. Commentator (Posts: 2340; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
No offence, but it seems like PA was really stretching at the end there. I'm pretty sure the last three (Xiaomi, INQ, and Blu) have even been featured in the news fairly recently.
9. Nikolas.Oliver (banned) (Posts: 1574; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)
plus one....BlackBerry, LOL just kidding
here's my list of obscure cellphone companies :
-Nexian which stands for "Next Generation" situated in indonesia
25. Nikolas.Oliver (banned) (Posts: 1574; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)
LOL, how do you know that phone ? live there ?
11. OpTiMuS_BlAcK (Posts: 411; Member since: 04 May 2012)
Philippine phone manufacturers, check out their androids.
17. Cyan3boN (Posts: 425; Member since: 23 Feb 2012)
micromax makes decent phones with good specs.
23. ncv144 (Posts: 126; Member since: 04 May 2012)
Acatel, they make sturdiest phones in my country and they are cheaper than dirt
24. Fuego84 (Posts: 264; Member since: 13 May 2012)
Lol @ imate..... I mate at night was the first thing that came to mind.
28. rusticguy (Posts: 2826; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)
Imate was Dubai based company. It was more selling branded versions of HTC. Their lifetime warranty phone was 810F and not the earlier ones. Company ceased to exist after 2009 i think.
29. Johnnokia (Posts: 488; Member since: 27 May 2012)
I had I-mate and it was really wonderful and tough ..
Thanks for GSM Arena , I knew most of those companies.
If I would live 90 years and lose my memory , I would never forget my Holy Great Nokia 3310 ... my first phone.
34. rusticguy (Posts: 2826; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)
My Imate Jam (almost 7 years old now with 1 terrible accident where the device flew out of pocket and landed on road with cover and battery all in different directions) and Nokia Communicator (which i could drop from shoulder height and it still wont go bad) still works ... being from old school i still love the communicator's physical qwerty with 5.5 rows of keys :)
32. yuvananda (Posts: 9; Member since: 18 Jun 2012)
Karboon and Micromax are very popular in India. They stormed into the scene by releasing dual, triple, and quad sim phones(?) way back in early 2009. They are cheap and crap as well.
33. Raymond_htc (Posts: 430; Member since: 06 Apr 2012)
I only heard of Xiao Mi.... they made the MiUI :) it seemed that Xiao Mi Phone 2 will boast a beastly high benchmark of 7000+.. omg