ZTE has announced the Tania, its first Windows Phone 7 powered handset. The manufacturer is known for its value for money Android phones and the Tania is the beginning of attempts at cheap WP7 offerings.
Inside the Tania is a Qualcomm MSM 8255 1GHz Snapdragon processor, alongside 4GB of built-in memory and 512MB of RAM, all of which, from what we played with, makes for quite a snappy Windows Phone experience. The benefits of using Microsoft's operating system over Android on less powerful hardware become immediately apparent, as the whole setup feels slicker than the usual ZTE experience.
Build-wise, sat on the back of the Tania is a matte plastic cover, which feels good in the hand, as does the phone's weight which gives it a good stirdy quality. The handset is also nice and thin at 10.7mm deep, which whilst not being quite Samsung Galaxy S II territory, is enough for it to be extremely pocketable.
Also slapped on the back of the Tania is a 5-megapixel camera. This is where the value approach to things becomes more apparent, as it doesn't cope quite as well with low light as some of the top end smartphones. The resolution is also slightly lacking. Without a proper play however we can't say too much more on the Tania's camera.
The Tania's display is a particular highlight. The more we see WP7, the more we like it. Sure the Nokia Lumia 800 spoilt us with its rich blacks and excellent contrast, but the Tania is not far behind. At 4.3-inches there is plenty of size to get stuck into and the 800 x 480-pixel resolution is a nice touch too. The ambient light sensor sat on the front of the phone behaved as it should, which is nice as often on cheaper phones the screen can go all sorts of crazy under different lighting conditions.
The touch sensitive buttons below the display reacted nicely to our incessant tapping, as did all the physical keys sat on the side of the phone. In fact the whole design of the Tania is pleasing and doesn't really give away much to say that the phone is a budget offering.
A single Micro-USB slot sits on the side of the phone, with the 3.5mm headphone jack placed on the top. It stops clutter and helps prevent confusion as to which button you are pressing on either side.
Not much else we can say about the ZTE Tania other than that its nice to see a cheap Windows Phone 7 handset done so well. We think the OS is primed and ready to take on the budget Android market and phones like the Tania mean it deserves to do well.
Like the Tania? Let us know in the comments below ...