Russia’s Yota Devices coming to Canada

YotaPhone 1Another smartphone company is coming to Canada. But unlike most that simply bring their devices to the Canadian market, Russia’s Yota Devices is looking to relocate its headquarters here by the end of the year. According to CEO Vlad Martynov, the company could end up in either Toronto or Waterloo.

The decision to come to Canada was driven in large part by more traditional factors such as lower costs, tax benefits and government support but Yota also expects to be able to hire many former BlackBerry employees that were let go as that company restructured over the past few years (an exercise that is now over). “Among those people there are brilliant engineers,” said Martynov during an interview with The Financial Post. “What we do is we pick up those engineers and bring them to the company.”

Yota entered the smartphone business in 2013 with its rather unique YotaPhone 1. The Android-powered smartphone sports a rather unique two-display design with a traditional LCD panel on the front and an e-ink display on the back that displays information all the time.

YotaPhone 1 specifications:

  • Processor: Dual-core 1.7GHz
  • Operating system: Google Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean
  • Cellular connectivity: LTE/HSPA+/GPRS/EGE
  • Other connectivity: GPS/A-GPS/GLONASS, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0
  • Display: 4.3-inch HD (720×1280) LCD and 4.3-inch (360×640) e-ink
  • RAM: 2GB
  • Internal storage: 32GB
  • Rear-facing camera: 13MP AF with LED flash
  • Front-facing camera: 1MP
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, compass, gyroscope, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor
  • Battery: 1,800mAh
  • Dimensions: 133.6 × 67 × 9.99 millimeters
  • Weight: 146 grams
  • Colours: Black
  • Other: YotaPhone gestures, Put2Back apps for back screen

Yota has a staff of 150 people. Among them are 15 former BlackBerry employees, a number of ex-Nokia employees and three sales staff already based in Toronto.

It still remains to be seen if Yota will bring its smartphones to the Canadian market but moving its headquarters here certainly suggests that this could happen sooner than later.

Source : The Financial Post