Friday, 26 June 2009

Strange recession--no slowdown in Nokia's Philippine sales

ABS-CBNNews
http://abs-cbnnews.com/technology/06/25/09/no-slowdown-nokias-rp-sales

Despite the economic downturn, demand for mobile e-mail and mobile computing will drive local consumers to buy more smartphones in the Philippines, according to the general manager of Nokia Philippines.

Nokia Philippines general manager William Hamilton-Whyte said there is no stopping the growth in Nokia mobile phone sales in the Philippines despite the global financial crisis. "The global phone market was down 10 percent this year. In the Philippines, I have not seen any slowdown," he said in an interview.

Hamilton-Whyte said Nokia accounts for more than 50 percent of total mobile phone sales in the Philippines, which he described as a dynamic market.

He added, however that some mobile phone users in the Philippines may change their handsets less often as a result of the economic downturn. "Before it was 24 months before they change phones but because of the global crisis, it would be longer at maybe 30 months," he said.

Hamilton-Whyte said the the country's growth in mobile Internet is feeding demand for more sophisticated smartphones. "The Philippines is going to become no. 1 in Asia in terms of mobile email in three years. It is on track towards that goal. It is already now in the top five in the world in mobile email," he said.

"Mobile telecom and personal computers converge. Mobile phone manufacturers come out with mobile phones that look like personal computers while computer manufacturers come out with computers that look like mobile phones," he said.

Hamilton-Whyte said an example of this merger of technologies is Nokia's latest product, the N-97, which has a 32- gigabyte internal memory that is expandable to 48 gigabytes.

"Electronic devices are getting smaller and more powerful," he said.

The Nokia N-97, which debuted at the Peninsula Manil Hotel in Makati City Wednesday, retails for P35,000 in the Philippines.

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