Would Your Grandma Buy This Smartphone?
Smart, cutting edge mobile devices and young people go hand in hand, like hipsters and ugly beards. One Japanese smartphone maker, however, wants to make it big here in the U.S. by hitting up your grandparents for business.
According to Japanese news site The Asahi Shimbun, electronics manufacturer Fujitsu has plans to move its smartphone sales model outside of Japan for the first time. Most other smartphone makers these days cram their little black, white or silver bricks with more and more features (and complicated interfaces), confident we younger folks will take it all in stride. Fujitsu sees opportunity in going simple, and targeting our elders.
Fujitsu's president Masami Yamamoto showcased the company's strategy yesterday to Japanese media, unveiling the phone that they hope will find its way into your grandparent's homes. With a clutter-free display, larger letters, bright colors and simple visual cues, Fujitsu's Raku-Raku is definitely targeted for senior citizens. Having an increased volume setting has been demonstrated to appeal to those whose hearing may have degraded from attending too many Beatles concerts.
The Raku-Raku has what the younger set would see as a retro 4 inch 480 x 800 px display, but sports a desirable 8.1-megapixel rear and 3.2-megapixel front cameras - perfect for snapping shots of grandpa in his ugly sweaters.
Yamamoto has not stated a date for the handsets to make landfall here in the U.S., and has not hinted at what carriers will support the device.
Why create a smart device to specifically cater to people who shrug their shoulders at more complicated iPhones and Android devices? To maintain an upward sales trend. “As the Japanese market has already hit a peak, we have to sell devices overseas to increase our sales numbers,” said Yamamoto. While other manufacturers like Panasonic have withdrawn their smartphone offerings from overseas, Fujitsu expects its mobile phone shipments to rise from 8 million phones in 2012 to approximately 10 million phones in 2014, in part due to hitting niche markets like older Americans and Europeans.
With these features, would your grandmother or grandfather bite, and start sending you embarrassing auto-corrected texts?