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Review GSM-phone Siemens SX1. The phones positioning, life cycle, price changes, advertising campaign

Review Siemens SX1. Summary>>

Siemens targets this phone for businessmen, and the advertisement slogan is work hard, play harder. However it turns out to be a small substitution of concepts, certain slyness. The company has to present this device as being a functional and having something in the background as well. This will allow creating advertisement activity around this product, however the main focus group of smartphone consumers are the youth, and those who need such functions as mp3 player and radio. Businessmen will not be so keen on this model. A confirmation to this statement can be the fact that a lot of SL45 users are going to buy SX1 as their next phone just because of its functionality and mp3 player on board. SX1 is the only phone on the market that allows all this stuff at the moment. Big form-factor rejects the minority of potential buyers.

Basically we end up with the fact that men from 22 to 35 years old will be the main consumers of this product. 85% of SX1s buyers will be men; meanwhile women are not expected to be crazed about this new phone, neither now nor in future. The advertisement slogan holds hidden meaning, this device is addressed to those who are just starting their career and have some time for games. The main effort was put into the second part of the slogan; it fits more to the device itself. The rate is made on certain audience niche. Functionality, ergonomics are fully corresponding to this segments needs.

A typical Siemens SX1 user profile looks the following way. Its a person who spends part of his time mostly in public transport or walking by foot. He will activate FM radio or MP3 player while moving. Listening to SX1 while driving a car doesnt seem to be an important thing to do, since cars usually have audio system that provides better sound quality. The user can check his e-mail and write some SMS/MMS as well. While he is at work, most likely he will not have internet connection, thats why he will use his smartphone for the same need (check e-mail). During the intermission in his work, or being present at home (if there is no gaming console or PC around) this person will spend his time playing games on his SX1. It is possible to create conclusion about this segments average profit, considering the users profile. This is an average level of profit; the consumer is neither rich nor poor. However were speaking about the major percent of the consumers (around 70%), the other 30% are those who love all the latest things and exclusiveness. These consumers buy the latest phones as soon as theyre released, the amount of such people remains the same and unchanged during the time. Another consumer category is what T-Mobile call Techie. These people are trying to find the ideal device among multifunctional devices, and often buy them as soon as theyre released. They use the devices functions to the max. They are ready to buy the device as soon as possible without looking at the overrated price; its just that they need to get the maximum functionality right here right now.

Each of these groups has certain brand preferences. They are also affecting the choice, and their choice should be taken into consideration. Siemens fans didnt have an alternative to other manufacturers smartphone finally received what they were waiting for, and this device turns out to be the top-notch for them. Such users care not only about functionality, but about the brand as well, in our case it is Siemens.

Taking in mind the sales experience of such devices one thing can be said for sure. Siemens SX1 will become popular in the following segments as soon as its released: Fashion, Techie. The main segment will start buying this phone from the end of February; later on the sales will be kept on a decent level by decreasing the price.

Another interesting question is related here is as well, and deserves close attention. Image segments consumers dont care about the products additional features, the only thing they care about is the phones original outlook and the presence of main functions (ring tones, good screen, polyphonic ring tones). At the same time Techie users are able to research every mm of their phone and get the maximum functionality from their phone. Siemens decided to launch SX1 before its bugs were cleared out on special purpose. The manufacturer made this since more people will find the bugs faster, than a limited number of testers. The idea of releasing pre-finished products is Siemens own idea, but its used by other manufacturers as well, and not only for mobile phones.

Most of the bugs were related with software, and Techies were the only ones who encountered them since they love to use a lot of functions. Thanks to their effort Siemens was able to release an updated firmware with the most of serious bugs being removed. The stability will significantly increase by the end of February, since the price will become more reasonable.

We can say for sure that the high price is set because Siemens doesnt want having wide sales now, since the device is not yet bug-free. The question is not about the lack of producing powers, but about artificial demand limitation. As soon as the device becomes stable the price will be decreased and the sales targeted for the phones main segment will being.

Siemens SX1s life cycle will last for about 1.5 years starting from the real sales. Active sales will last for slightly more than 6 months (February-September). Meanwhile sales will be stable during the rest of the time. The only way to increase them is significantly decreasing the price, however Siemens will not make this move. Here is how the price will get decreased during the time: We counted in the current wholesale and retail price. Please draw your attention that the difference between wholesale and retail price will be minimal during the phones lifecycles end. This is a typical thing for such products. For example 3650s price is minimal, and in some shops its price is even lower than the wholesale price. The minimal wholesale price for Siemens SX1 will be 260 Euros; however it can be reached only if the sales and shipping amount are high. We believe that average prediction should be used; according to it the minimal level for wholesale shipping will not be higher than 300 Euros by the end of the year.

The packages content will be different as well after some time. At the moment USB cable is included; however starting from March it will not be shipped. The bug-fix period will pass, and there will be no need in shipping the data cable with the phone. Interesting parallels can be spotted, other models had the same package content during their first months of the presence on the market, and later on data cable was removed. Starting from the end of summer packages with MMC cards inside will appear. This can be either standard packages, or some special ones attached to some advertisement campaign.

Siemens plans releasing updated version of this smartphone shipped in different case color; however there isnt anything certain about this, neither the dates nor the markets are announced. Its release is still under the term of discussion, so we advice you not to put any high expectations on this one.

During one of the press-conferences Siemens representatives mentioned that the possibility of releasing Siemens SX1 Limited Edition exists. The release of such product depends on the original SX1s popularity, and 3rd party companys interest. Limited edition can be released in the shortest terms. Their price will become 10-20 percent from the standard price for Siemens SX1. The changes can affect not only the smartphones case color, but software part as well (wallpapers, interface icons etc).

The beginning of spring and autumn will become the advertisement peak for this device. Meanwhile summer activity will be rather low, since the devices main consumers will be away for holidays during this period of time.

All types of advertisement will be used in order to promote this device except for the internet (really small amount of investments will be made into this one). The main effort will be put into outdoor advertisements and the press. Advertisement on the radio and movie theaters will be the supportive spheres (2/3 of the advertisements amount will be used during the first two months of advertisement campaign). Television will play a great role as well, since its the opening type of advertisement segment as well as the Radio and the press (the life cycle of TV advertisement depends on the definite region). Similar advertisement campaign was launched for Siemens MC60, and we find them similar.

PR-specialists are concentrated upon formatting several opinions about the device. First of all, the multimedia part, an aspect of new generation of mobile entertainment will be mentioned. And innovation and originality of this device will be pointed out as well. This will become the sequel to the advertisement series started by Siemens SL55 (usage of Stanley Cubricks Space Odyssey move theme, phones rotation during the clip just the way space station was). This phone is considered as a part of Siemens image, and the most innovative product from the company that offers best technological solutions to date. Take a close look at the presence of Aliens in Siemens SX1s various pictures. The main idea is that this smartphone was made by more advanced civilization.

One of the toughest questions the PR-specialists should not answer directly are the comparing of Siemens product with Nokias, and comments about Series 60 being used. Any compare with Nokia 6600 should be avoided as well in order to highlight that Siemens SX1 is a whole different class device that offers stereo FM radio, mp3 player and video recording. The question about the usage of Series 60 for software part of the phone should be answered the following way: this software was developed by Symbian, and Siemens has certain amount of stocks just like other companies do including Nokia. However all these answers will be announced in the nearest future, and will most likely be published in a special Q&A distributed to companys representatives. Now lets look into the future:

The platforms life cycle on which Siemens SX1 is built will be enlarged with the release of WCDMA version of this phone (I dare to say that its name will be U25, but thats just my guess); it will be released in the first quarter of the year 2005. There arent any significant changes, although they are present.

The next model Siemens SX2 will have more functionality and will be released by the 3rd Quarter of 2004. I highly doubt that the model will be released on time, so November and December are more expected release dates. The phone will be different with the new form-factor (its made of two pieces, alike Motorola V70 and V80). This phone will have semiautomatic lapping, just pull the upper case part a little, and it will shoot up. The closing process is more trivial. The screen is capable of showing 262000 colors at once, and has 16mb of memory available for user (this specification can be changed). There will be nothing particularly new except for improving of basic specifications (screen, camera, memory). The keyboard is located on the lower part of the case and is standard. This is made mostly for business users, who will be one of Siemens new targets. An interesting thing is that when this device will be promoted it will be targeted on another segment, this was made in order to keep SX1 sales. There will be another model released by Siemens, in another, earlier unknown for German manufacturer segment.

Review Siemens SX1. Summary>>

Eldar Murtazin (eldar@mobile-review.com)
Translated by Alexander "Lexx" Zavoloka(alexander.zavoloka@mobile-review.com)

Published —13 February 2004

Have something to add?! Write us... eldar@mobile-review.com



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