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ZTE rains down devices for 2012, starting with quad-core Era smartphone

ZTE's self-proclaimed "era" of mobile relevance begins with fifteen new Android and Windows Phone devices announced at Mobile World Congress.

BARCELONA, Spain--The cell phone manufacturers have been bringing it at MWC, and ZTE is no exception. The Chinese manufacturer announced several Android handsets and hinted at others in the weeks leading up to the show, and today, revealed the rest of their global plans.

Out of the 15 smartphones and tablets is ZTE's flagship phone for the year, the ZTE Era. It runs off an Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core 1.3GHz processor, has a 4.3-inch qHD display, and a profile of just 7.8 millimeters thick. It will launch in the third quarter of the year.

ZTE Vice President He Shiyou. Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

Android phones specifically headed toward Europe include the Skate Aqua, Kis, Blade II, and ZTE Mimosa X. The Blade II has a 1GHz processor; meanwhile, the Mimosa X is a dual-core device.

Taking a splash into Windows Phone, there's the ZTE Orbit, which has a 4.3-inch screen, a 1GHz processor, a 5-megapixel camera, NFC support, and a 4-inch WVGA screen. Its got a planned Q2 launch date.

A slew of LTE devices also emerged, including the ZTE V66, a 7-incher with a 1.2GHz Qualcomm processor, the ZTE N91, which has a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU and a 4.3-inch WVGA display, and the ZTE PF 100 and T98. Both are Tegra 3 quad-core tablets. The ZTE V95 is another LTE tablet.

Now playing: Watch this: ZTE Era

Another device from manufacturer is the ZTE PF112. It runs on Android Ice Cream Sandwich and has a 4.5-inch HD screen. With its ability to display 16 million colors with a 1280x720p resolution, the PF112 will supposedly have very high image quality.

It isn't just hardware on ZTE's mind. The Mifavor user interface will ride on top of Android. From the video demo shown at the press conference, the skin, which is dark-themed and friendly-enough overall, looks like it's paired with Gingerbread, though I expect it will also apply to Ice Cream Sandwich as well.

"This is a new year for the ZTE brand," said He Shiyou, Executive Vice President of ZTE. If ZTE can get the Era to a U.S. carrier, their fortunes in the U.S. could improve.