Filipino smartphone maker aims to sell 10 million units

SOLID Group Corp., the company behind MyPhone, targets to sell 10 million mobile phones this year.

Kevin L. Tan, the company’s vice president, said the figure is a combination of both smart phones and feature phones. In 2015, he said Solid Group sold more than four million phones.

“We see continuous growth and there’s still a great demand for both smart phone and feature phone,” Tan said, although he noted that feature phones will account for more than 50 percent of this year’s target.

Tan, who joined the Cebu Business Month 2016 mini press conference last week as one of the event sponsors, said the local market can expect more MyPhone models to be released this year.

The official also acknowledged the “outrageous” competition in the mobile phone business, saying there are already 50 international and local brands present in the Philippines. Nonetheless, he said MyPhone will leverage on its “quality and affordable” phones and its “familiarity” to the Filipino market.

According to Tan, MyPhone is the first local brand in the country and the first to offer dual active SIM feature. The brand was introduced in 2007.

“We are keeping in touch with (the Filipino market), which was ruled by international companies before. We believe that there is a soft spot for affordable mobile phones and we are able to bring the prices down to common Filipinos,” Tan said.

A MyPhone mobile phone comes with pre-installed applications and has features designed by Filipino software developers. The most popular is the Catholic prayer app inspired from the large population of Filipino Catholics.

While smart phone is the direction for mobile phone business, Tan said a strong market remains for feature phones in the Philippines, describing them as “very affordable” and “dependable.” Today, he said even some smart phone users have with them extra feature phones.

In a study made by the International Data Corp., MyPhone is named the third biggest brand in the Philippines in terms of unit shipments in 2014.

In a remarkable decision last year, MyPhone won over Apple in a trademark dispute. Apple had earlier contested the Filipino phone merchant’s trademark application, claiming that “MyPhone” was “confusingly similar” to Apple’s iPhone and was “likely to deceive or cause confusion.” However, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) dismissed the case filed by the US technology giant.

Presently, MyPhone is largely present in the Philippines. Tan said some of the handsets are also distributed to Hong Kong to serve the large population of overseas Filipino workers there.

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