Panasonic Corporation to make India mobile devices headquarters

Panasonic Corporation plans to make India its global headquarters for mobile devices business, from where it hopes to expand operations into SAARC and Middle East countries in 2014 as it rebuilds its presence in the smartphone market globally following last year's retreat, The Economic Times reported.

The Japanese consumer durables maker, which sold televisions, air-conditioners, washing machines and refrigerators, plans to spend 12 per cent of its India revenue of $1.65 billion on brand promotion, according to managing director for Panasonic India Manish Sharma. He said India was a very promising market and the penetration and growth of smartphones would continue for the next five to six years.

India's smartphone market saw a 100 per cent increase to 44 million devices and is expected to touch 80 million devices this year, IDC said.

The company was looking at a 5 per cent share of the Indian smartphone market within one year.

The mobile phone business would likely contribute 15-20 per cent to overall India revenue by next year. The company also planned to launch smartphones running the Windows Phone OS.

Meanwhile, the company launched its Eluga U smartphone (already available in the global market) for the Indian market today, which is powered by the KitKat 4.4.2 Operating System (OS) on board comes with Snapdragon 400 processor, The Daily Bhasksar reported.

The new Eluga U boasts a 2 GB RAM and 16 GB internal memory, expandable upto 32 GB. The back cover comes with a premium mirror printed texture. The back side features an anti-shatter crystal glass for classy looks and durability.

At the launch event Manish Sharma, managing director Panasonic India said, the company aimed to launch 15 new phones and 8 new feature phones in the Indian market and would look at securing a 5 per cent share of the Indian market over the coming years. 

The phone comes with a 5-inch HD display (display resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels) protected by a Corning Gorilla Glass 3 on the front. The phone features a 13 Mp camera on the back side with led flash, complementing a 2 Mp secondary camera on the front side.

This dual SIM phone is powered by non-removable 2500 mAh battery, having an eBay landed price of Rs17,490.

The company said the phone had a unique user interface, with  features like Kwik Lock that lets users lock or unlock Eluga U with double tap. The user interface lets users access all apps from the homescreen.

The phone is being offered in white and black colour options.