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Cheap LTE phone Trooper leads Kazam's charge in battle to beat rivals

The plucky smartphone maker, which was founded by ex-HTC execs, today rolls out a host of new devices it hopes will lure shoppers away from Samsung.

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The Trooper 445L. Cheap LTE is the name of the game here. Kazam

Kazam, the phone company formed by British ex-HTC executives, has unleashed its latest salvo in the battle to make a name for itself, lifting the lid on a host of new gadgets, including cheap LTE phones.

Heading up the charge is the appropriately named Trooper 445L, a 4.5-inch smartphone with LTE powers, plus a 5MP camera, a quad-core processor and 1GB of RAM.

The 445L has a screen resolution of 480x800 pixels, which isn't very high -- but with these middling specs you can expect a very low price. One of Kazam's current-generation Trooper phones is on Amazon for £116 (around $180), so that should be a rough guide to the pricing of this new iteration.

Kazam is churning out a range of roughly similar mobiles, with the Trooper 440L, 450, 450L and 455 en route. The company is also making a slew of Windows devices, including three Windows 8.1 tablets (the L10, L8 and L7), and the Thunder 450W and 450WL Windows smartphones.

Tiny Kazam, founded in May 2013, has a real challenge ahead if it wants to compete with the likes of Samsung, which uses its sheer size, scale and control of the phone supply chain to keep prices on its own mobiles low. Kazam has said that it hopes customer service offers will help it compete with the big boys. These include replacing cracked screens within the first year of purchase, and remote support for its Android phones that lets a call centre rep take control of your phone to resolve problems.

"Yes we're small now, but why not target Samsung? They make smartphones, we make smartphones," Kazam's chief marketing officer told CNET last year. For now the company's phones are only available in Europe, though it has expanded to 15 countries from its original launch territories of the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Poland.

Kazam's recent promotional efforts have proved controversial. An ad for one of its recent phones was recently banned by the UK's Advertising Standards Authority, following complaints that the advert was overtly sexual and objectified women, The Guardian reports.

We'll get a closer look at Kazam's new hardware at Mobile World Congress next week. Stay tuned.

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