S.S. Bassi, country manager – SAARC, Sangfei Mobility, the manufacturer or Philips mobiles, on the latest trends in mobile devices market in India.
Major trends in 2014
The mobile phone market in India has historically been on a growth path and this year has been no different for the country. The number of Mobile telephone subscriptions today stands at 1.15 million in India as per recent data released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. This comprises of both smartphonesand feature phones. The year 2014 saw major development in terms of mobile phone technology. This included development of technologies in geo-targeting or location-based mobile marketing, shift from feature phone to smart phone continues, faster mobile data networks and wearable technology.
Philip’s achievements in India in 2014
The year marked the launch of Philips mobiles business in India. We launched in May this year and we addressed a very specific grievance of our customers through our smartphones – that off battery life. Today we are present in about 1500 retail outlets across India selling Android phones. This year was our launch phase. Redington who is our distributor in India, has its presence in 56 locations. We intend to expand our footprint across the country and are also working with Accel Frontline which has about 165 service centers across India and will provide support to our customers.
Philip’s strategy to win customers in 2014
The smartphone industry and technology itself has been evolving. We have seen the smartphone market in India progressively growing. In line with this we will be launching new phones specifically in the segment with advanced features and specifications and the latest android versions to target the diversity of requirements that exist in India. To connect the feature of the phones to the direct benefit of the consumers i.e 5300mah battery feature in 6610 which gives 33 hours of talk time
Good and bad moments in your market in 2014
Some of the highlights of the year include our entry into the smartphone segment with the W6610 and W3550. Later in the year we also launched the X2566, a phone that has been exclusively designed for senior citizens. We are the only well-known player in the market to do so. The X2566 comes with a variety of features that make the mobile easily accessible and useful to senior citizens.
Your focus areas and strategies in 2014
2014 was just our launch phase and we have been growing in presence and reach since the launch. Our focus in this light was to expand our retail presence both through retail outlets and the online space. We also had a major focus on expanding our service centers across the country. We will continue our focus on making good quality products that is available to everyone. We see a huge market for quality products.
Trends to watch in 2015
From a mobile phone perspective the top trends to watch out for in 2015 are:
# Better Mobile User Experience Design: The last year has seen the development and evolution of user experience design. App designers are today basing their technology designs on a variety of new techniques and methodologies such as motivational design, quite design and playful interfaces. Augmented reality is another novel feature that is gaining prominence in enhancing user experience.
# Location Sensing: Precise indoor location sensing which enables knowing an individual’s distance to within a few meters in already gaining in popularity. This couples with mobile apps will result in a new generation of personalised services and information.
# Wearable Devices: The launch of the Apple watch and much earlier the Samsung Galaxy Gear points to a growing prominence of wearable devices. With big bets place on M2M technology and healthcare sensing technology, this is an area that is likely to see growth in the coming year.
Philip’s expansion and investment plans in 2015
We plan to launch new line up every month with great mix of feature & smartphone and complete our national footprint. We plan to cover almost 10,000 retail outlets by the end of next year.
New strategies for 2015
In 2015 we aim to be among the top 10 mobile manufacturers in India. We plan to do this by:
# Expanding our presence in the online space. We see a great market opportunity in expanding our retail presence to e-commerce sites. In the coming year you can expect to see greater presence of Philips mobiles in the e-commerce space.
# Launch of new phones: We are also planning to expand our range of smartphone and update our existing ones with advanced features and specifications.
# Service Centers: We stand apart from other smartphone players in the market due to the excellent service we provide our customers. Today we have 165 service centers across India. That means we have one service center for every 10 retail outlets. We believe that quality service is what will make us stand apart from our competitors.