Fujitsu readying phone flagships for European restart

Fujitsu is readying Android and Windows Phone smartphones for Mobile World Congress next week, it's reported, ahead of the company's re-entry into the European market and challenge to Apple and Samsung. Described as high-end devices, the new Fujitsu phones will pack LTE 4G, NFC and biometric security, the FT reports, and be so-called global phones with support for multiple networks.

Fujitsu had announced its intention to re-enter the US market back in January, having withdrawn to Japan to focus on the home market some years earlier. There, the company offers both smartphones and tablets, and holds around a fifth of the market, but rivals like Samsung, Apple, HTC and Motorola have grown to dominate the North American and European markets.

It now seems Fujitsu wants a slice of those pies too, and it believes a flagship line-up is the best way to achieve that. The company showed off its waterproof Arrows tablet at CES 2012 last month, while its super-skinny 6.7mm thick Arrows F-07D smartphone was caught crossing the US FCC back in November.

Japanese devices are known for catering to a high-end user base with considerable tech affinity – mobile TV, waterproofing, NFC payments and other abilities are commonplace in handsets there – but the differences between networks in Japan and elsewhere has made transitioning smartphones and tablets impractical. However, Fujitsu has apparently designed its new range with global use in mind. "The Japanese market has been in a silo from a technology and design perspective, but Fujitsu is bringing out a global product" Fujitsu Europe mobile phone chief Robert Pryke says, claiming the handsets are equipped to be used all over the world. That certainly implies at least pentaband 3G/UMTS along with LTE and other 4G technology.

Fujitsu will presumably show off its wares at MWC 2012 next week, where it will mount its first challenge against established players Samsung and LG. We'll be there to bring back all the details.

[Thanks James!]