Thu, 23 Nov 2000

Siemens expects robust sales from new model

JAKARTA (JP): Siemens launched on Wednesday its MP3 built-in SL45 handset amid growing competition in the country's mobile phone market.

General manager of PT Dian Graha Elektrika (DGE), the distributor of Siemens in Indonesia, Robby Darmasetiawan said he hoped the sales of the SL45 series would reach 100,000 units during the first year.

He said the sales of the new handset were expected to more than double Siemens' total sales in Indonesia to 200,000 units in the financial year ending in September next year.

Siemens sold 93,000 handsets between October 1999 and September 2000.

Robby believed the sales of the new handset series would elevate its position to third largest player in the local cellular market despite competition from other new handsets.

Other major handset makers such as Nokia, Ericsson, Motorola and Samsung have also launched their latest models to tap the surge in the local demand.

DGE marketing manager Farid Manan said the SL45, claimed to be the first mobile phone with a built-in MP3, could record up to 45 minutes of MP3 music on its 32 megabyte multimedia card.

The card can also store files from Microsoft Powerpoint, Excel and Word, he said, adding that the 32 megabyte multimedia card can be changed to one with 64 megabytes or 128 megabytes for bigger storage space, Farid said.

"The handset also comes with a sync station, software and data cable to enable it to synchronize with programs on your PC," he said in a media brief.

At between Rp 4.8 million and Rp 5.5 million, the SL45 will be available in the market next month, Robby said.

He said DGE started selling Siemens mobile phones in 1994 with the hefty S3 series, followed by the S4 series.

Siemens suffered a drop in its Indonesian sales as the financial crisis deepened in 1998.

In 1999 Siemens altered its conservative image to a younger and more dynamic one with the C25 and S25 series, and early this year with the P35 series, he said.

"The launch of SL45 marks the entrance of Siemens into the infotainment (information and entertainment) era. The mobile phone will bring a new dimension to entertainment and is aimed at the young at heart," Robby said. (tnt)