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Motorola C113a: low-cost phone for the masses?

From the Emerging Market Handset (EMH) program of the GSM Association (GSMA): Globe Telecom has joined the program and will avail of Motorola’s C113a for less than $30. The ten participating operators have committed to order six million units.

Why Motorola? According to Rob Conway, Chief Executive and board member of the GSMA:

Motorola won thanks to a combination of a portfolio starting from sub-US$30, together with other key factors such as after-sales support, local service, brand presence and a choice of low-cost handset models including an exclusive product, the C113a for this programme.

Quoting Gerardo C. Ablaza, President and CEO of Globe Telecom, from the press release:

“The first phase of the Emerging Market Handset programme, which paved the way for new low cost terminals with an affordable Motorola product, has helped Globe penetrate the lower income segment of the population, even in less-developed towns in the Philippines. Our tracking shows these phones are delivering good subscriber usage and, interestingly, in some cases, ‘phone-sharing’ behavior. There are still more challenges in making mobile service more affordable, both from the perspective of cost and service package. We are glad that the GSMA is further breaking down barriers on the terminal cost side through the second phase of the Emerging Market Handset programme.”

Will this displace Nokia as the Filipino mobile users handset of choice?

Ablaza talks more about subscriber take-up in
Number of telco subscribers overstated by 3-5M–Globe

The real number [of subscribers] at this point is 30 million at best, which should not include 3 to 5 million multi-SIM subscribers. This means real penetration rate is 35 to 38 percent at most.

The Emerging Handset Program should help raise these numbers – and the carriers’ revenues.

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