ZTE plans to debut eight new devices at Mobile World Congress next week. The Chinese telecommunications company said the gadgets would feature multi-core chips, LTE, and the latest versions of Android and Windows Phone. ZTE wants to become one of the world's top three device manufacturers by 2015.

Pinger, which makes a communications app for iOS, has landed $7.5 million in funding from Deutsche Telekom's investment division, T-Venture. Pinger plans to use the cash to expand its app to other platforms and international markets.

• The Samsung Rugby Smart will hit AT&T on March 4. The ruggedized Android smartphone is dustproof and water resistant, capable of withstanding being submerged in up to one meter of water for 30 minutes. It runs on AT&T's HSPA+ network and comes equipped with a 3.7-inch WVGA Super AMOLED display and 5 megapixel camera. It is being sold for $100 with two-year contract and data plan.

Cincinnati Bell will use Convergys for billing and customer support through 2014 under a new extended contract. Convergys will support the operator's long distance, IP services, and carrier access billing systems. Cincinnati Bell also said it will license a wireless billing solution that Convergys has hosted and managed for it over the past nine years. Financial terms of the contracts were not announced.

Qualcomm's Gobi modem brand now encompasses its entire complete modem product portfolio, including the MDM chipset family. Qualcomm's modems provide 3G and LTE connectivity to a variety of wireless devices including smartphones, tablets, data cards, routers, USB dongles, customer premises equipment and M2M modules.