+ Monday January 21st, 2019 Ausdroid » News and Editorial » Alcatel celebrates 2018 and looks to 2019, including a deeper connection to the Rabbitohs

Alcatel’s sponsorship of the South Sydney Rabbitohs is a key component of its involvement with sport and youth community events. In 2019, you can expect to see the company’s logo front and centre a little more as it takes on major sponsorship of the club’s away jersey.

The sponsorship announcement was made at an end of year function hosted for local media, during which Sam Skontos, VP and Regional Managing Director, South East Asia & Pacific for Alcatel took to the stage to discuss just how the company performed in 2018.

Alcatel’s 2018

A success story is often good one, and Alcatel’s is particularly impressive. The company that exited the market and had an uphill battle on its hands to claw back market share upon return, and that’s paid off in 2018 with sales and revenue almost doubling year-on-year. Across 20 products in market over the course of the year, Alcatel’s shipped just shy of 1 million units. It’s made them the #3 phone manufacturer in the country, and we all now who holds those #1 and #2 positions.

2018 also saw Alcatel move a little out of its established niche, wth major upgrades to the design, construction and features of its phones keeping pace with higher-end market trends like moving to 18:9 displays and use of fingerprint readers for security. It’s a strategy that assists to have paid off.

Alcatel benefits greatly from its parent company – TCL, a Chinese appliance manufacturer that we’re most familiar with in these parts for their Android TVs – as they are able to leverage TCL’s manufacturing prowess for their screens and skirt around market supply issues, making the next tease notable.

In a market that’s just starting to bring devices with the technology to bear, Alcatel’s teasing a foldable display in the company’s future. This was mentioned in the same breath as the company’s vision to keep their phones under $500.

A foldable screen at a $500 price point? Alcatel, you have our attention.

The Palm of the Hand

We also got a sneak peek at a product coming to our market in 2019, when it became apparent that a TCL executive in attendance was using one of the new Palm phones, relaunched as a brand under TCL alongside Alcatel and Blackberry.

That sent the tech media in attendance into a bit of a tizzy as we all descended on the executive, who happily handed his phone over (unlocked!) for us to poke, prod and photograph.

The Palm phone is a tiny, tiny device. While it seems likely to be pitched as a lightweight secondary device that you’d take out on a run or to the beach, it can function as a phone on its own and runs full Android (it even has face unlock features).

We’re looking forward to getting our hands (or hand – it’s so small I don’t know if you can legitimately put two hands on it) on the phone as it comes to our market in 2019.

South Sydney Rabbitohs Sponsorship

The major announcement for the night, though, was Alcatel’s deepening of its ties with the Rabbitohs, which dates back some 8 years. In 2019, the Rabbitohs’ jerseys worn at away games will adopt something of a throwback design to a classic look, and Alcatel’s logo will feature front and centre with parent TCL’s logo also present on the back.

Alcatel’s involvement with the Rabbitohs also runs to a social responsibility end, wth the company calling out Souths Cares, the club’s youth and indigenous community program, during the announcement.

2018 has clearly been a big year for Alcatel, and we’ll be keeping a keen eye on their developing technology and products in 2019.

Thanks: Alcatel.

Jason Murray   Assistant Editor

Jason Murray

Before discovering the Nexus One, Jason thought he didn't need a smartphone. Now he can't bear to be without his Android phone. Jason hails from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane depending on his mood and how detailed a history you'd like. A web developer by day with an interest in consumer gadgets and electronics, he also enjoys reading comics and has a worryingly large collection of Transformers figures. He'd like to think he's a gamer, but his Wii has been in a box since he moved to Sydney, and his PlayStation Vita collection is quite lacking. Most mornings you'll find him tilting at various windmills on Twitter - follow @JM77 and say hi!

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