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Nokia's presentation in Moscow, launch of two low end devices
Before the forthcoming launch of new products in Moscow were many rumors: what will show the company? There was no definiteness even inside Nokia, so some opinions faced, but logical point of view won. Giving to the Russian market due as to the market with quickly growing subscriber's base, Nokia gave it the palm of supremacy in presentation of two new low end devices. By the way, originally it was planned to show only Nokia 1100, and Nokia 2300 was planned to be shown as European premiere. Probably during last moment there was a comprehension, only one device is not enough for the world premiere, if not to tell worse. The refusal of demonstration of mid and high price level models was caused by the obligations to the European cellular providers, because such products play important role for them. A art of new models probably will be shown at IFA Exhibition, which is starting in Berlin in the next few days.
The press conference can be named world premiere, but there was no atmosphere of expectation, anticipation of something interesting. All action passed usually. Journalists asked their immemorial questions, the speaker of the company answered them in the evasive manner, having managed not to give any concrete answer for 40 minutes. But during this time happened the most interesting event, which was not noticed by associates in the stream of answers. One of my colleagues asked, about the company’s share in the market of terminals, including developing markets, i.e. Russian. The basic part of the answer contained data to the effect that during last ten years the share of the company in the market of terminals steadily increases, it is visible on the basis of the monthly data. Concrete figures weren't named, but later the assistant of the speaker of the company has dared to tell in the comment, that Nokia is the leader of the Russian market, its production occupies 30 percent here.
Here begins the intrigue. We'll remind, that in the beginning of July Siemens (in Moscow too) arranged world premiere, having shown three new models (one low end and two mid level devices). In the prologue, the president of Siemens ICM Rudi Lampreht, noted that Siemens is the leader of the Russian market and occupies 33 percent on its sales. If to believe two companies, it turns out that in the market have two leaders. However, it is not so.
Taking into account the ratio of sales as in wholesale channels, and in retail networks of Nokia's and Siemens' production we receive a curious situation. Nokia sells more devices, and it has the strongest positions, as in the budgetary segment (Nokia 3310), and in the average and the high price segments. It is enough to remind, that Nokia has the maximal model range for today among all the companies. At the same time the most part of Siemens' sales falls on budgetary devices, plus Siemens S55 is well sold model now. But this device cannot compete with similar by positioning Nokia 6610/6100/7210. It is because Nokia has 3 devices, separately they can't compete with S55's sales, but together they block its sales rather seriously. Without going into details, we'll only note, that the data provided by Nokia, look real, or as much as possible approached to reality. The company takes the leading position in the market.
The second interesting moment is connected with the current estimations of Nokia's market volume in Russia for this year. So it is estimated in 14 million, we heard the same forecast in the beginning of the year, more exactly in the end of the past one, as is known it has resulted in the overstocking of distribution channels and crisis in the market. But, today making a start from the level of current sales of the companies included in the big four, we can say confidently, that the market of official devices in Russia will make (wholesales) by the most modest estimations not less than 12 million, and, most likely, will reach also 12.5-13 million terminals. It turns out, that Nokia was not mistaken with number and direction of market's development, but Nokia has made wrong time calculations, that provoked crisis.
In my opinion, on results of the year, the distribution of the companies in the market will look as follows, the first place occupies Nokia (27-28 %), it's follow by Motorola, then Samsung and Siemens takes only the 4th place. So unexpected place of the second "leader" of the market is explained by poor sales during the first half-year, especially in the second quarter. In the third quarter is observed normalization of the situation, but it is far from ideal. The growth of sales is worth waiting from the middle of October when new products will appear in the market.
Having determined with the position of the companies in the market, we'll return to new products from Nokia. Why their representation was in Moscow? The answer is simple, the sales of the budgetary segment and also in part the mid level are important for Nokia. The occurrence of the 1000 series device proves it clearly. We have already got used, that new budgetary devices are focused mainly on the youth, but here all is different. The company positions new phone Nokia 1100 as a devices for adult people, for those who is connected in their work with moving different objects (loaders, perhaps?), with possibility to be soiled (in the advertising it was grocer). As a whole it is clear, that the new device is intended for adult consumers which have no too high income level, and from phone it is required only the performances of its basic function. I'll note, that the point of view is correct and, other manufacturers will try playing in this segment following Nokia, in fact, there's overabundance of youth low end devices in the market, and there are no devices in the same price group for senior people.
It's impossible saying, that Nokia 1100 has conservative design. It need to be checked in practice as far as it is to senior's generation liking, and now I notice that externally the phone have something in common with the French devices. In particular, one coloring reminded me another model from Sagem, the plastic is of the same color, plus the design around the screen which perhaps makes it visually big. The screen has emerald backlight, which is not characteristic for the company.
At the presentation it was emphasized that the keys of the device are protected from hit of moisture, its sides have special rubber insert, the phone cannot slip out hands. This version cannot be named environment proofed as the protection is only nominal, but it is present.
The phone does not cause any sharp senses in life, it is neutral, and that is what is required from the device with such positioning. I liked the backlight of the screen, the information is read well on it. Keys in spite that they are generated almost closely to each other are convenient in use. The device is simple by functionality, 50 entries in phonebook, no additional functions, SMS are organized in the standard mode.
The phone is successor of Nokia 3310 and it will be successful in this segment, its initial price of the offer in October, November will make about 85-90 dollars. Later the price will be reduced, but not too great, the bottom limit in the nearest half-year should be 70 dollars. With the help of this model Nokia can expand the presence in the budgetary segment, will increase the market share in Russia. It is curious, that there are 10 various colorings for this model. I absolutely overlooked to mention, that Nokia considered as necessity to have the small lamp built-in phone for pragmatic people.
The second novelty is related to youth devices, the colorings speak about it (to a word, the phones were named Katya and Fedya in Russian variant). So, the device with pink colors is female, the grey one is man's variant. The division is kind of curious and in something original, but it plays role in this segment. The screen of the device is not color, it has light blue backlight (pastel blue). Small phonebook makes this device related with Nokia 1100, but in this case we see the presence of unusual features for this class: FM-radio, the built-in handsfree. Taking into account that the cost of the device will make about 125-135 dollars in the beginning of the next year, this is interesting decision for youth.
Subjectively, the keys are not too convenient in use, though the luster involves, but they are pleasant by touch. The device also does not slide in hand, it lays well in it. Proceeding from the price and presence of built-in radio, it is possible to speak that this model will be claimed in the market.
Finishing the story about new models it is necessary to note, that company Nokia calculated successfully, both the release time of these devices, and their potential. These models will produced and present on the market for enough long time, taking into account the cost of the company's trade mark, its popularity, they become popular and claimed by many people.
Published 1 September 2003
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