ZTE Axon 7 flagship teases US audiences with print ad ahead of launch

ZTE Axon 7 flagship teases US audiences with print ad ahead of launch
Last summer, ZTE attempted to cement its position as a manufacturer to contend with in the ultra-competitive US smartphone market by launching the first Axon phone, a model the company described as “a flagship phone designed in the U.S. for the U.S.” But in the months that followed we saw a glut of subsequent Axon devices launch, including those with a more international focus; were the days of the Axon as an experiment in US smartphone marketing over?

Recently we've been following rumors and leaks surrounding work on a proper follow-up to that first Axon, and while we initially dubbed the handset with the presumptive Axon 2 name, invites to a Chinese launch event revealed plans to call the phone the Axon 7, instead. But lest we think that announcing the phone in China means that US shoppers won't get a shot at the new hardware, ZTE's US branch has just published an ad that sure seems to imply the Axon 7 will similarly be making a retail debut in the States.

In a full-page ad in The Wall Street Journal, ZTE USA thanks its tens of millions of users for their smartphone choices. That's quite nice of ZTE and all, but we're most interested in the handset peeking up from the ad's bottom.

Not only is that sort of elaborate grille-work a hallmark of the Axon line, but the handset depicted here sure appears to be a dead ringer for the phone we saw surface late last month in a filing with China's TENAA regulatory agency. That was ZTE's model A2017, the very same phone believed to be the Axon 7. Even the phone's antenna stripe, visibile in the TENAA side view, aligns with the WSJ ad.

While we have to acknowledge that ZTE USA could have innocently selected this image as a general representation of ZTE phones, the fact that this appears to be a just-about-to-launch model (with ZTE's China event scheduled for May 26), and that ZTE USA is running it in a major publication like this has us feeling what we hope is appropriately optimistic that a US release is very much in the cards for the Axon 7.

source: GizChina via Pocketnow
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