Dell and Baidu team on smartphones, tablets in China

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U.S. computer maker Dell and China’s leading search engine Baidu are reportedly teaming up to create a line of smartphones and tablet computers to challenge China’s current market leaders such as Lenovo and Apple.

The collaboration will result in Dell phones and tablets running an operating system developed by Baidu called Yi [link in Chinese] according to a report from Bloomberg. Baidu’s move into mobile software will follow that of what Google has done with Android, now currently the world’s most popular mobile OS.


Yi, which is built using some technology from Android, will run on phones and tablets from a number of different hardware makers and not be a deal exclusive to Dell, Bloomberg said.

China, of course, is quickly becoming one of the largest markets for consumer electronics, having recently passed the U.S. as the world’s biggest personal computer market. According to Reuters, China also has about 900 million mobile phone subscribers as well.

Baidu has risen to greater prominence in China’s online search market over the last year as Google has clashed with the Chinese government over censorship and government-sponsored hacking allegations.


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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles