The mobile industry should focus more on the 65+ market as it will soon ‘double in size’, Doro’s UK MD Chris Millington told Mobile following the launch of its two latest handsets, the PhoneEasy 610 and 615.
Doro, which specialises in handsets for the senior market, has packed its new devices with a range of new features, including a more user-friendly design, a direct SMS key and improved text and display visibility. The PhoneEasy 615 is Doro’s first 3G device, and features a 3.2-megapixel camera and over-the-air programming ability.
The PhoneEasy 610 and 615 are available on Orange and T-Mobile through Carphone Warehouse. The company is hoping to get approval from other operators to range its new products.
Millington said: ‘This new product range is the start of our work with partners to develop products and solutions and provide consumers with interesting and new ideas.’
Despite achieving success in the 65+ market, the Swedish manufacturer has struggled to convince the mobile industry to take the senior market seriously since it launched in the UK in 2005.
According to Millington, there is still a great deal of cynicism within the industry towards the senior market.
Millington said: ‘Our main issue is [people’s] attitudes towards the concept and the value. People continue to want to do just what they did before, because that is what they know, and it takes time to break these issues.’
Millington highlighted some of the biggest mistakes made by mobile manufacturers when targeting the senior market, such as producing phones that appear simple but actually prove frustrating and difficult to use.
‘When technology is easy to use it is fantastic, but when it is complex and difficult the older market will distrust it and not feel confident using it.’
At Mobile World Congress in February, Doro said it hoped to sell more than 200,000 handsets in 2011. When asked whether this was target was still achievable, Millington insisted that the company was on course to reach its goal.
He said: ‘Yes, it is still achievable. I want to sell 300,000 units next year. We have already sold in excess of 100,000 units so far [in 2011].
‘My aim is to get a 3% market share by 2012. We have just broken into the 2% market share with the volumes we are doing. We just need to drive that further and get one or two more network partners to get to that next level,’ he added.
Meanwhile, Doro aims to grow it business by investing more heavily in its above the line (ATL) marketing and increasing it overall marketing spend.
Millington said: ‘Doro will be adding to its online and TV campaigns with the introduction of more advertisements. Consumers will soon start seeing more print and television adverts.’
Doro has also produced two other handsets in the shape of the PhoneEasy 680 and 682, which have been fitted with extremely accurate GPS location functions.
However, the PhoneEasy 680 and 682 are unlikely to be available through regular retail channels. Instead, the Swedish manufacturer plans to range the phones in specialist healthcare channels.
Doro’s new launches
Doro’s new PhoneEasy 610 and 615 handsets feature an easy to read display, durable design and extra loud sound. Both models are fitted with an emergency SMS button and a call list on the back.
The phones are designed to be hearing aid compatible and come with an FM radio and Bluetooth connectivity.
The PhoneEasy 610 boasts a long battery life, while the 615 packs a 3.2-megapixel camera and is also the company’s first 3G phone. The 3G capabilities will enable Doro to penetrate countries that only have 3G networks.