It was announced on Friday that Baidu Inc, China's largest search engine, will launch a new smartphone partnership next week, which will see the smartphone use an upgraded version of its mobile operating system.
The partnership will be similar to the one Baidu announced last December with Dell Inc. This joint venture involved Dell launching a smartphone which ran on Baidu's Yi platform. This will not be the case for the new smartphones as they will run on an upgraded version of Baidu Yi, called Baidu Cloud.
Wang Jing, Baidu's Vice President of Engineering and Head of Mobile said, "We have a few partnerships coming up and will announce it in a week."
Wang confirmed that Baidu are in talks with "global" handset manufacturers to make smartphones with Baidu's mobile operating system, for the Chinese market.
Wang also added that rather than being a products company, Baidu plan on moving towards becoming a platform company that offers products across a range of devices.
Cloud computing is becoming more and more significant as consumers are preferring to access the internet from their mobile phones rather than desktop, putting pressure on Internet companies, such as Google and Facebook Inc , to develop strong mobile platforms from which people can still use their services.
Last year saw the launch of Baidu's mobile platform, Yi, in China to compete with Google Inc's Android mobile operating system and Apple Inc's iOS.
Government statistics showed that at the end of 2011, China had 356 million mobile Internet users.
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