Alcatel Rolls Out Spring Line of Fashion Phones

Mar 30, 2007

Alcatel, a French/Chinese phone maker is making a big splash in the U.S. this year, with twenty – yes, twenty – phones for the U.S. market. The look? Chic and stylish.

I love the new guys. The weird guys. The Frenchmen with gold silk Louis Vuitton scarves and a runway full of fashion models, who think they can break through here in the U.S. with new ideas.

That's Gregory Fermanian from Alcatel, a French/Chinese phone maker who's making a big splash in the U.S. this year, with twenty – yes, twenty – phones for the U.S. market.

Alcatel's theme is "chic and stylish," but inexpensive, Fermanian said. The company uses soft-touch plastics, a leather-like finish, and design touches like "dots of liquid metal" on the outside of a flip phone, or a keypad that looks like it's been distressed with water drops. They showed some phones with florid, floral covers.

These design elements enhance basic, but reasonably featured phones. Their range is huge; it goes from the simplest voice phones up to mid-range music phones with 1.3-megapixel cameras, 3.5-mm headphone jacks, dedicated music keys and support for 1-Gbyte TransFlash cards holding music.

Alcatel is also extending a deal they have with Elle magazine in Europe to sell Elle-branded phones in the US. The "Elle GlamPhone" is a moderately-sized slider phone in four colors: white, pink, yellow-green and purple. It has stereo Bluetooth for its MP3 player and a 1.3 megapixel camera.

Ultimately, customers are going to buy Alcatel phones if they like the look and the price. And there's nothing wrong with that: cell phones are as much expressions of fashion and personal style as they are of technology. It may be easy to make fun of French style (such as saying that a powder-blue phone is "a more male look," as Fermanian did), but the country's history with fashion is unimpeachable – so why not extend that history into fashion phones?

"As we are new in the market, we want to show we have plenty of possibilities," Fermanian said.

Alcatel is working on getting all of their GSM phones approved by Cingular, and their CDMA phones approved by smaller regional carriers, Fermanian said. With luck, customers should see their phones start appearing in local, independent cell phone shops by May.

Copyright 2007 by Ziff Davis Media, Distributed by United Press International

Explore further: Tech review: Nikon's P900 takes the term 'super zoom' to a new level

Related Stories

Nokia turns to Q1 profit but networks division is a concern

Apr 30, 2015

Buoyed by strong overall sales, Nokia made a net profit of 177 million euros ($195 million) in the first quarter from a loss a year earlier, but its shares plummeted more than 10 percent Thursday over a weak performance at ...

Nokia in talks to take over Alcatel-Lucent (Update)

Apr 14, 2015

Finnish telecoms equipment maker Nokia said Tuesday it was in talks to purchase all of its Franco-American rival Alcatel-Lucent, with the aim of creating a telecoms and Internet technology behemoth.

Alcatel-Lucent loss narrows in 1st quarter

May 06, 2011

(AP) -- Alcatel-Lucent SA said Friday its net loss narrowed sharply in the first quarter compared with a year earlier, when a components shortage caused the telecommunications gear maker's losses to balloon.

Manufacturing processes driving smartphone prices down

May 22, 2014

A change is taking place in the mobile phone market that has the potential to bring more power to the consumer. Cheaper devices are becoming an option and while they're not quite ready yet, they could revolutionise ...

Recommended for you

Hidden cameras, invisibility cloaks in Israeli spy expo

Jun 30, 2015

Hidden cameras, invisibility cloaks and mini-drones were among the gadgets on display Tuesday at an exhibition of Israeli surveillance technology, offering a rare peek into the secretive world of Israeli ...

In the UK, bPay offers fob, band or sticker options

Jun 29, 2015

Method of payment: "Cash or credit?" The two options sound so yesterday. In the UK, technology support in banking offers a new type of menu—band on the wrist, fob or sticker. The three new devices from ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.