ZTE is taking a strong hands-on approach to diving into the United States smartphone market, especially through a fanbase developed by its Z-Community building.

The company opened up a beta program for select Axon 7 users to receive and test Android Nougat out recently (with Daydream VR in the cards) and has made that update an official event on its docket.

Now, it’s the budget phone’s turn. That’s right, the $99 ZTE ZMAX PRO that’s exclusively locked to T-Mobile and its prepaid family of services is also getting a beta program — we’re not 100 percent sure this is for Android Nougat, but the update seems big enough for a beta test. But obviously, this is gonna be a US thing.

You must be registered with the Z-Community to be eligible for the program and also must agree to a non-disclosure agreement. There’s a link to the application survey in our source link.

[alert variation=”alert-info”]Update: ZTE USA has released a statement regarding this beta program which, unfortunately, drops the prospect of seeking Android Nougat in the ZMAX PRO:

“The beta project for ZMAX PRO expressed through this Z-Community thread –https://community.zteusa.com/thread/14262 – is to help enhance the current software on the device.  While we do not have any plans to push Android Nougat to the ZMAX PRO right now, we continue to seek feedback from consumers on all of our devices so we can enhance the user experience, which is what we are doing here.”

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