ZTE isn't exactly a household name in the U.S. smartphone scene, but it's hoping to capture just a bit more of that mindshare with its latest mid-range release, the Nubia 5S mini LTE.
The unlocked Nubia 5S mini LTE is not to be confused with the iPhone 5S, despite its similar nomenclature. The device is powered by a quad-core, 1.2GHz Snapdragon 400 processor. It features a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 5-megapixel front-facing camera, and a 4.7-inch 720p display, as well as 16GB of onboard storage. ZTE is particularly proud of the device's photo-taking features, like independent focus and exposure. Unfortunately, it's a bit behind in software with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, though ZTE seems to hope you'll overlook that for the Nubia 5S mini's "sophisticated camera platform and LTE speeds."
The phone is sold LTE-ready, unlocked, and GSM compatible, and you can preorder it now for $280, though it won't start shipping until August 27. The price isn't too bad for an unlocked mid-range device that you can take to any GSM U.S. carrier—and almost anywhere in the world. However, other mid-range devices, like Motorola's Moto G, are better at receiving consistent software updates.