Remember the time Cyanogen ditched OnePlus just before India launch and partnered with Micromax's Yu Televentures to launch a set of value-for-money smartphones running on Cyanogen OS? Relations with OnePlus had turned sour and Yu sub-brand could really use an established OS creator for its phones.
After all this time, Cyanogen has decided to end the exclusivity and as per reports, Lenovo is going to manufacture smartphones running on Cyanogen OS out-of-the-box. Lenovo will be launching a sub-brand called 'The Zuk' which will retail online only.
The smartphone, dubbed Zuk Z1, is expected to be launched in a couple of weeks in India. If you remember, Lenovo was planning to launch budget-friendly smartphones in India, as a part of its new consolidation strategy.
Why did Cyanogen accept Lenovo's proposal?
Although we don't have details about Cyanogen's plans ahead, we do know that Yu Televentures won't be happy with the news. After all, Yu's smartphones could boast of an OS being run by a company of software experts.
Lenovo's product head did say that deal had been finalized some time back and they were good to go with Z1's launch in India. Yu smartphone sales have been good but not flattering enough for Cyanogen to completely bank upon Micromax.
It is possible Cyanogen was looking at other channels to improve their reach to customers in India. What could be better than Lenovo taking a step to sell its smartphones loaded with Cyanogen OS. Can we see Motorola phones coming with Cyanogen OS? Let's leave that for future.
Features of Lenovo Zuk Z1
Zuk Z1 is already available in the Chinese market under the same name. The smartphone will run on Android 5.1.1 Lollipop with Cyanogen OS version 12.1 skin on top.
Other prominent features include 64GB internal storage with 3GB LPDDR3 RAM and 2.5Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor. Sporting a full HD display, the device comes with a 13MP primary camera, along with 8MP front camera. It also has a massive battery of 4100mAh, something missing in mid-range smartphones these days.
The Z1 retails at around Rs. 18,250 in China, if converted to Rupees, which places it in the mid-range smartphone bracket. The Chinese company needs to price the smartphone below Rs. 20,000 to make it a success, while ensuring it does not eat into Lenovo's own Motorola smartphones' share.
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