Motorola announces new product portfolio

9 Jan 2003

SHANGHAI: Motorola today announced details of its 2003 product portfolio at its annual media conference in Shanghai.

The new handsets reflect the company’s current emphasis on low-cost manufacturing and the priority placed on product design. New developments such as colour screens, cameras, Bluetooth and Java are incorporated in the range, which also includes another 3G (third generation) handset.

First up is the C350, an entry-level handset positioned immediately above the soon-to-be-launched C330. The phone will feature a colour screen, GPRS, changeable covers and polyphonic ringtones. Labelled ‘a colour phone for the masses’ by Motorola executives, the C350 is expected to be available in the second quarter of this year and is likely to retail for around €150 without a network subsidy.

A step above this is the T720i, which will be launched early this year. The phone is essentially an update of the T720, a handset that was never launched in Ireland. The T720i will be Motorola’s first MMS-enabled (multimedia messaging service) handset and features a flip design with a large colour screen. A detachable camera will allow users to take pictures for transmission via MMS. Other features include Java and polyphonic ringtones. No details on pricing are available at present although Motorola executives indicated that it would be competitively priced in comparison to existing camera phones on the market.

Several other mid-range phones are also in development, details of which are expected to be announced later this year. The last GSM handset to be announced was the V600, which will act as Motorola’s top of the range model in this sector. The phone will incorporate a 64,000-colour display within the familiar Motorola flip design. Features include a built-in camera, MMS, Java, video capture and Bluetooth. The V600 is also Motorola’s first quad-band phone, incorporating the new 850MHz frequency recently opened up in Latin America. Once again, no clear details on pricing are available as yet. It is anticipated that the new handset will sell for around €325 without a network subsidy. Motorola also stated that the phone meets the specifications for Vodafone Live! and that is was already in testing with the operator.

Also announced at the event was the US company’s second 3G handset. The A385 is a full colour phone with Java capability. Unlike its predecessor, the A380, it will feature an integrated camera. No details on pricing were available at the announcement.

“Today, there are more than 1.2 billion mobile handset users and there’s plenty of opportunity for more growth through both new users and users who want to replace or upgrade their handsets. We are focused on building momentum and on winning across all price points by working with wireless operators to envision, create and deliver must-have products,” says Tom Lynch, executive vice-president and president Motorola PCS (personal communications sector) at the launch.

By Dick O’Brien