Chinese handset maker Gionee recently launched the Gionee A1 smartphone in India. The launch coincides with Gionee’s aggressive plan to establish its manufacturing base in India. The new smartphone has a 16MP front camera with selfie flash, 4010 mAh battery with quick dual charge feature, 4GB RAM, 64 GB internal storage, and support for external storage up to 256 GB. With the launch of this new product, Gionee has made its intentions clear that it wants to capture a significant share of the vast smartphone market in the country.
We spoke to Arvind R Vohra, Gionee India’s Country CEO and Managing Director, about Gionee’s India game plan and more. Here is what he had to share:
The Gionee A1 smartphone
From a standpoint of what we are highlighting, it’s not just the selfie feature alone but also the long-lasting battery. Everybody has been talking about selfie; my idea was how we take the concept of selfie to a new level. Even our design language and our brand proposition, whether it is a phone at Rs 25k or 8k will be the same and we have created an aspiration from a design standpoint.
Make in India
Now all our phones are being manufactured in India. To assist in the new manufacturing process, a new manufacturing unit will be set up in Haryana, for which Rs 500 crore will be invested to make sure that there is increased capacity in the plant by the time it is functional, which is planned in the next two years. Moreover, at Gionee, we are targeting revenue of 1.53 billion USD by the next financial year.
There is no plan for the online market. For me, online and offline are channels, and now that channel wants to work with us. Earlier, we were forced to work with that channel. Now, online wants to work with offline.
Data connectivity and growth of smartphones
For a handset vendor, greater internet connectivity will mean that customers will now demand better performance. So, the pressure on us is to create good hardware. By and large, the only way to say you are good in hardware is mostly about having a good processor, memory, software, and design. However, those are not the only factors. In my opinion, today, it is also about camera and battery while the rest is a given; only these two are the differentiators.
Gionee’s new brand ambassadors and challenges ahead
We roped in actor Alia Bhatt and cricketer Virat Kohli because they have a huge youth following and having them makes it easier to connect with the youngsters. I think the biggest challenge for any brand is to constantly focus on making the consumer experience better and also the service, because with more data coming, the challenge for all companies will be distribution, and experience with the product, brand and service provided.