Taiwanese electronics giant Acer would start manufacturing handsets in India, with a monthly capacity of 100,000 units, and for which it has invested around $10 million.
S. Rajandran, chief marketing officer, Acer India, said the company was serious about its smartphones portfolio.
“Not only are we serious about our category but we want to evolve this as well. We were into the pilot mode before to understand market dynamics and consumer psyche and as soon as we were ready we launched,” Rajandran said, adding that the company would also start its phone manufacturing at its Pondicherry unit.
“This will not be a full-component manufacturing unit but an assembly line which has a monthly capacity of 100,000 units. To start the assembly line we have nearly invested $8.5 to $10 million,” he said.
“The plant will be operational by December 2015 and as the demand for the smartphones increase, the investment and production capacity of the plant will also be scaled up appropriately,” Harish Kohli, managing director of Acer India, said. “We are targeting sales of nearly 250,000 units per quarter.”
Acer has launched two smartphones — Liquid 630s and Liquid 530 — priced at Rs.10,999 and Rs.6,999 respectively in partnership with Flipkart.
The company, which is also one of the key laptop and PC players in the country, said that it was also interested in wearables into the country.
“The entry of wearables and other phones be it Windows or Android will depend on the performance of the two phones that we launched today. I do not see an immediate opportunity here but within the next 18 months our wearables might hit the country,” ST Liew, president of Acer’s smartphone business group, said.
Asked about its partnership with Flipkart, Kohli said, “E-commerce is the choice of the consumer and Flipkart a trusted platform, hence the partnership is inevitable. More than 50 percent of consumers are buying phones from websites or an app.”
Kohli also clarified that Acer, which has over 75 exclusive stores and 200 multi-brand stores, could easily start selling offline.
The company’s two new handsets will come with sleek, curved chassis with upgraded front-facing cameras, wide-angle lenses and enhanced audio.
While the Liquid Z630s will come with a 5.5-inch display, a 64-bit octa-core processor and 3 GB DDR3 RAM and 4,000mAh battery, the Liquid Z530 comes with eight-megapixel front camera, 84 degree wide view angle with the bright magic selfie feature.
The company also said that the newly launched phones could be serviced at 160 cities in India.