Cuba closer to making its own cell phones

With an architecture designed for Cuban conditions, software and systems developed by national institutions and now in the final stage of the project, the first cellular telephone prototype will be launched in our country.  

According to René Cano Díaz, director general of the Industrial Enterprise for Informatics, Communications and Electronics (GEDEME), the assembly of the 6,000 units that will be used in the pilot test began at the end of May. The units are destined for distribution in ETECSA and COPEXTEL, from where the tests will be carried out.   

Referring to the first devices, Cano Díaz clarified that they will not be launched with their own operating system, at least at this stage, but that in a second stage, the cell phones will have an operating system developed jointly with the University of Informatics Sciences. Other technical details of the Cuban cell phone have not yet been disclosed.

And while I am on the subject of the operating system of this Cuban cell phone, it will be NovaDroid, built and customized from source code and focused on mobile devices. According to its developers, it is safe since it is open source and free of backdoors, which has led it to be deployed in 375,000 computers, 15,300 laptops, 36,700 tablets and 50 technological classrooms.

On social networks, the main opinions expressed revolve around the future marketing and prices of the device, as well as the features, functionalities and technical details. Although there is more uncertainty than confidence in the Cuban model, due to the information gap itself, perhaps the case of the first national cell phone will turn out to be similar to those of Huawei or Xiaomi, which started out being known as ordinary or low-quality brands.

When these Chinese brands were first launched they had problems in terms of distribution and quality in the early years. But then we went from seeing extremely cheap cell phones, which nobody wanted simply because of their country of origin, to high-end equipment that today catches everyone’s attention.

In spite of the distances and technological and market comparisons between Cuba and the Asian giant, we will have to wait to know for sure if GEDEME’s cell phone, whose name is also unknown, will serve as a real boom that will insert the country into a race that began more than twenty years ago, or will turn out to be just passing news.

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