Sony Ericsson has launched its first TD-SCDMA handset to capitalize on it expects to be the fast adoption of smartphones in the China market.
The handset vendor yesterday unveiled the Sony Ericsson A8i, a touchscreen device jointly developed with China Mobile and which uses the Chinese carrier’s OS platform.
“China is a hugely important market for Sony Ericsson and we are committed to maintaining our strong position,” Sony Ericsson CEO Bert Nordberg said.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Nordberg said he expects smartphone adoption to increase in China as the price gap between smart and feature phones narrows. Sony Ericsson expects smartphones to represent 50% of the market by 2015.
IDC estimates that smartphones accounted for 11% of the 160.6 million mobiles shipped in China in 2009.
Nordberg added that the vendor plans to continue offering W-CDMA phones in the market through China Unicom, but has yet to decide whether it will be financially worthwhile to develop cdma2000 handsets for China Telecom.
He said that the plan to shift from “volume to value” was succeeding, with ASPs growing to €160 ($202) in Q2 from €122 a year before, and Sony Ericsson capturing around 7% of global market revenues from just 4% of total shipments.