Orange announced its new Signature phone partners at the World Handset Forum in Amsterdam today and showcased the world's smallest smartphone -- its new SPV C500 with Windows Mobile software.
Motorola, Nokia, LG, Sony Ericsson, Sagem, Alcatel, HTC -- and for the first time Samsung and Siemens -- all feature in the H2 2004 Orange Signature phone portfolio. Orange has been working with the manufacturers to design and develop the hardware and software of its new Signature phones, in order to create a series of unique handsets that offer easy access to advanced mobile services and the best possible customer experience. More than 20 Signature phones are expected to be launched during the second half of 2004 across the Orange group. Other manufacturers are also expected to be included in the catalogue at a later stage.
Signature phones have proved to be the most successful Orange handsets in terms of usage and revenues. The Treo 600 and SPV E200 phones have both delivered more than double the revenue of the average non-Signature phone* due to their simple functionality and one-touch access to Orange voice and data services.
The latest Orange Signature phone is the SPV C500. It combines the power and familiarity of a PC with the form factor of a pocket-sized mobile phone. It weighs just 100 grams and, with its compact 108mm x 46mm x 16mm frame, is the world's smallest Smartphone, but still allows for a 65k colour screen and an easy to use versatile keypad. The phone is due to be launched by Orange in seven European countries - the UK, France, Switzerland, Denmark, Netherlands, Poland, and Slovakia - starting in the summer. Pricing details will be available upon launch.
Showcasing the SPV C500 for the first time at the World Handset Forum in Amsterdam, Holland, Martin Keogh, Vice President of Global Product Management for Orange, said: "The SPV C500 is a marvel of miniaturisation. It's a third smaller than the last version of the SPV and targets a specific, as yet untapped, segment of the Smartphone market -- the professional consumer who wants to keep their world in their pocket, not their briefcase."
"Our customers told us that they loved the functionality of previous SPV phones -- the familiarity of their desktop PC, simple Internet access, Outlook on the move -- but they wanted a smaller form factor. So we've worked with our partners to maintain that experience, but shrink the components inside. However, despite its smaller form-factor, we haven't compromised on performance. In fact, we've enhanced the performance of previous SPVs, offering a new homescreen, video content and messaging reminders."
As with all Orange Signature phones, the SPV C500 gives customers a unique Orange experience on their phone, providing them with a range of exclusive applications and services. The SPV C500 boasts a new home screen (offering instant access to key services), Orange Backup (which allows customers to store their personal and business data on the Orange network and restore those details when required), Packet Video player (offering Packet Video's innovative progressive download service for smoother access to video content) and Orange Update, which allows customers to trial and download new applications such as ringtones, tube maps and games. Orange Help is also included as an electronic user guide stored directly on the device. Each SPV C500 will also come with an Orange "Try" card -- a mini memory card that can be slotted into the phone allowing customers to access content such as a real-time currency converter, interactive city maps and office applications. The Try card allows customers to sample new applications for free and then purchase them directly through Orange. It also has active links to both voice and data services, designed to stimulate usage.