One possible reason behind Sharp’s bull-headed determination in entering China’s highly competitive mobile phone market is that during late May 2008, they surpassed the 10-million mark for their One-Seg compatible mobile phones in Japan. And that’s no small feat, given that they only started selling such phones two years ago, in May 2006.
One-Seg is a terrestrial digital broadcasting service that handsets in Japan use for mobile TV streaming. Sharp became one of the industry leaders right from the offset, with its first One-Seg phone featuring a “cycloid-style” LCD screen that turned 90 degrees horizontally, offering users a new way to enjoy mobile TV.
Since then, Sharp has rolled out a total of 23 different One-Seg compatible handsets, all featuring the liquid crystal display technology that makes their Aquos line of TVs famous around the world.
What really kicked off Sharp’s One-Seg mobile phone sales is the release of a follow-up to the original cycloid style model during Spring of 2007. This included dual-hinged and slider designs, that again took the market by storm, and pushed handset sales from 5 million in October 2007 to past 10 million during May of this year. Only time will tell, though, if Sharp’s efforts will have the same effect over China’s handset market.
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