Huawei, ZTE to build mobile brands

By SiliconIndia   |   Monday, 29 September 2008, 11:39 Hrs
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New Delhi: Chinese manufacturers Huawei and ZTE will be building their brand names by retailing their mobile phones. The companies will no longer be in tie ups with the service providers, who till now were buying these phones and giving them away under their own name as a part of their CDMA schemes. "Bundled offerings make it difficult to leverage our brand name with consumers," a Huawei spokesperson told Business Standard.

Huawei will be delinking the service by September 29, 2008 and by next year it will start with retailing 80 percent of its phones under the brand name. As far as ZTE is concerned, the move was triggered by its California based owner Qualcomm, a wireless telecommunications research and development company. "India will be the first country where this concept will be launched. Operators as well as handset manufacturers are already working on it and by early next year consumers will be able to avail of this," said Thia Rajagopalan, Director of business development, Qualcomm CDMA Technology. The company exists in the market through tie ups with operators like Reliance Communications, Tata Teleservices, Vodafone, Spice Telecom and Aircel. However, it will come in the retail market as D K Ghosh, Chairman and Managing Director, ZTE Telecom India says, "We plan to enter the retail market by the end of this year, after we launch in China and the U.S." Enlightening more on the strategic shift he adds, "The starting price for ZTE's products will be $20-25 (900-1200) and it is exploring tie-ups with retail stores and chains."

The company while entering into the retail market pins its hope in the Indian scenario as it expects Indian business, which currently contributes $700 million (3,220 crore) to overtake its Chinese business.

However, as far as the existing companies are concerned they do not see any threat posed by the new entrants to their business.

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