Sony Mobile Communications, the mobile device unit of Japanese electronics maker Sony Corp, said yesterday that it is working with Taiwanese carriers to test 4G LTE smartphones using the new 700 MHz frequency that will soon be introduced in Taiwan.
The new phones are being tested in the laboratories of Taiwan Mobile Co (台灣大哥大) and Far EasTone Telecommunications Co (遠傳電信), with the first model set to enter the market in the first half of this year, said Jonathan Lin (林志遠), general manager of Sony Mobile’s Taiwan branch.
Sony is expected to launch “several” LTE phones supporting the 700 MHz frequency, including mid-tier models, by the end of the year, Lin said.
“700 MHz is a brand new frequency, so it will take some time for us to complete the tests for software and hardware because we value the quality of our products,” Lin said. He declined to reveal any price range for the phones.
There are no networks using the 700 MHz frequency anywhere in the world now, but Taiwan Mobile and Far EasTone are expected to begin using the frequency in LTE networks in the second half of this year.
Earlier yesterday, South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co unveiled its new phone-tablet device, the Galaxy Note 3 Neo, which will hit local stores in the second quarter of the year and make use of the country’s 700 MHz frequency.
The downsized version of the Galaxy Note series is expected to carry a price tag in Taiwan of under NT$20,000 (US$660), the company said.