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People's Daily Online>>China Business

Baidu Inc expands into mobile Internet market

By Ji Beibei  (Global Times)

09:50, December 21, 2011

Chinese search engine giant Baidu Inc unveiled yesterday a smartphone produced in partnership with Dell Inc, in a bid to establish a presence in the country's growing mobile Internet market.

The Streak Pro D43 smartphone is based on Baidu's Yi mobile platform, and is targeted mainly at business users and those actively in social networking, Hao Yan, a public relations consultant for Dell China, told the Global Times yesterday.

According to Dell's official website, the phone will be available from January 10, 2012. The price of the device has not been disclosed, but some media reports said the phone could be priced at approximately 3,000 yuan ($472.38).

"The price will be crucial to the phone's sales volume as the phone will compete mainly with domestic smartphone makers, who dominate the low-end market with cheap prices," Wang Ying, an industry analyst at Internet consulting firm Analysys International, told the Global Times.

The launch was not a cause of concern to Google.

"We will focus on how to serve our users with better technology and service instead of fretting about our rivals' new product," Wang Jinghong, a Google spokesperson, told the Global Times.

Microsoft, another big player which has been in the smartphone market for almost 10 years, however, took the news more seriously. "We are following the news about the phone," Wang Yiyang, a public relations consultant for Microsoft, told the Global Times.

As "there is no market response to Streak Pro D43 yet," Microsoft will adopt a wait-and-see attitude and will overcome challenges to stand out in the market where competition gets increasingly fiercer, the company said.

With 940 million mobile phone subscribers, China is one of the fastest growing mobile Internet markets in the world.

According to Analysys International, the country had 288 million mobile Internet users by the fourth quarter of 2010 and the figure is expected to hit 600 million in 2012.

Without an advantage in the mobile Internet market, Baidu's leading position as an Internet portal may be undermined, a report issued by Credit Suisse said earlier this month.

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PD User at 2011-12-21183.39.39.*
All mobile phone companies must enable a feature "BLOCK" to block unwanted emails on all mobile phones. CPC ought to make this a law else it is becoming a real nuisance to users.

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