Lenovo have plans to unveil their first smartphone later this year in Nigeria Africa, this is a strategic move for Lenovo because they are looking for for markets they can sell directly to without the intervention of a carrier. The company chose the African nation to unveil their first attempt at a smartphone because they are completely free to sell their devices straight to the consumer, whereas in South Africa you do have to work with telecommunications.
South Africa has the largest economy on the continent, whereas Nigeria has the second largest; it seems that Lenovo will try to get traction with their devices before they attempt to partner up with carriers in South Africa. The prepaid phone market it huge in Africa since the continent is still developing and most people would rather a prepaid phone over a contracted phone.
A Smartphone at Every Price Point
It is rumoured that Lenovo could sell their devices across six different pricing bands, some retailing as much as $500; this indicates that they are emulating Samsung by having at least one device at each price point to draw in a larger amount of customers. As of yet there has been no disclosed screen sizes of the devices or what they will be known as when they eventually do make it to market.
Lenovo may have to deal with some Microsoft also trying to expand into developing markets e.g. Nigeria, they are trying to sell Windows phone to the growing market. The smartphone penetration stands at ten percent, it has doubled every year for the past few years; this indicates a promising time to invest in the newly evolved market.
Africa, Major Battle Ground for Lenovo
Analysts also claim that by 2015 Africa’s handset ownership will increase from 73 percent to 85 percent, the smartphone penetration has started to slow down in Europe, North America and Asia.
Oliver Ebel the Vice President and General Manager of Lenovo Middle East and Africa said “It’s a huge population as well with huge smartphone growth and it’s an open market”, this reinforces the fact that Africa is a major area of interest is they can make up ground that they have lost by not entering other markets.
Source – BloomBerg