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Friday, April 02, 2010

Big orders for DiGi’s iPhone show huge market demand

iPhone is not just for the top-notch (executive but the larger population) and that is why we brought the entry levels down and our pricing is compelling. Our data offering is also generous.’’

  • Coming next week will be Q1 townhall session, will there be extra quarter or half month bonus for the quarter? Everyone hope we will get 0.5 month at least for our hardwork. Really need the money for my house renovation ... cross fingers!
  • PETALING JAYA: Pre-orders for DiGi.Com Bhd’s iPhone hit 10,000 and since the smartphone’s launch yesterday, new orders are stacking up as DiGi’s tariff plan appears to be reasonable, at least for now.

    Its cheapest plan costs RM88 per month, comes with 1GB of data, 200 voice minutes and SMS each and is RM12 cheaper than Maxis Communications Bhd’s iValue 1 offering.

    The most striking package is DiGi’s all-in-one monthly fee of RM106 per month where a user commits to 36 months’ subscription but there is no upfront payment for the device. However, Maxis’ iValue 1 plan has the lowest iPhone prices and each model generally costs RM200 cheaper than DiGi’s offerings.

    The big volume of pre-orders that DiGi gets shows there is a huge market for smartphones like the iPhone but it also has to do with the expectation of lower pricing plans from DiGi.

    “The pre-orders are beyond what we would sell in the first quarter,’’ chief executive officer Johan Dennelind said in an interview with StarBiz, but declined to reveal figures of the company’s commitment of iPhone sales to Apple Inc.

    DiGi has a three-year commitment to sell iPhones in the country and it is the second player after Maxis, which had exclusive rights for one year until yesterday. There are nearly 100,000 iPhones in the local market currently.

    The iPhone is supposed to help DiGi grow its revenues this year and Dennelind expects the company to surpass the 5% industry average growth rates. DiGi marked the iPhone launch by making three major centres in Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Kota Kinabalu collection points for customers to collect the 10,000 pre-ordered phones.

    While it is difficult to bring down the cost of the device too much, the strategy that DiGi has adopted is to reduce the price of its services. At the launch yesterday, DiGi head of marketing Albern Murty said the company was offering three pricing plans – RM88, RM138 and RM238 a month – and giving two times more bundled data, SMS and MMS.

    “We hope to fulfil the 10,000 pre-orders within the next few days. There is no real waiting time as when we sell, we make sure there is enough stock,’’ Albern said. Dennelind added: “Our strategy is to do it differently. To us, the iPhone is not just for the top-notch (executive but the larger population) and that is why we brought the entry levels down and our pricing is compelling. Our data offering is also generous.’’

    With DiGi’s entry, the stage is set for competition as seen in many markets, but will the incumbent further reduce prices of its packages?

    An analyst reckons some price pressure can be expected going forward and any price drop will be good for the consumer. Maxis had a few days ago in anticipation of DiGi’s launch introduced a plan to slash RM200 off its subsidised iPhone price for its iValue plans and the offer is valid till April 20.

    Being the second player means DiGi has Maxis to thank for the groundwork, something Dennelind acknowledges. “Being a challenger has worked well for us but we also like to try to stand out against Maxis on some key things,” he said, adding that “there are also other devices that we want to push such as BlackBerry, Android and Symbian as we want to stand for a variety of phones.”

    Asked if DiGi had the rights to distribute the iPhone 4G that Apple Inc was expected to launch later this year, Dennelind said: “We are a partner and expect to be treated as a key partner. That is our clear expectation. Our customers will also expect the latest as well.”

    The commitment with Apple is there but according to Dennelind, DiGi is not going to “push the phone just to rake up sales as it wants to find a balance so that customers have a good experience” without clogging up its network.

    The company’s 3G network covers 30% of populated areas and this is complemented with its Edge network which has 60% coverage. Even if users moved out of the 3G coverage area, Dennelind said they could continue to use the iPhones as the Edge network was there.

    “By the end of this year, the coverage will be about 50% and by 2011 it would be close to (the) competition,’’ he said. DiGi’s service is now available in the Klang Valley, Ipoh, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching.


uLi.佑莉 said...

I also thought want to buy...and my pre-order collection is on this Saturday. But after I check out the Digi coverage in my new house area, its only sad :(

So I better wait for Maxis counter attack :P

kenwooi said...

can they sponsor me? haha =P

Don said...

You don't be suprise that dg edge speed is much better than maxis 3g speed.

they did a speed comparison before in iphone and seems dg edge won over maxis 3g speed!

babe_kl said...

i so want one, got shortcut to get or not? LOL

btw it's so funny u selling digi here and yr nuffnang is showing xpax :p

Squidö said...

yohh!!! At last!!! but wanna wait for 4G

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