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Prestigio teams with Intel for slice of the smartphone market

Middle East: Wednesday, July 03 - 2013 @ 14:31

Targeted at ‘cost conscious’ consumers, the device is set to retail at AED899 in the UAE from tomorrow. The official launch takes places at Dubai Mall’s Sharaf DG outlet – the store has signed an exclusive one-month deal to stock Prestigio’s phones before they go on a wider release across other outlets.

While the majority of media buzz is centred on the latest and greatest high-end smartphones, there has been a recent trend to put budget handsets in the limelight. Just last week, Lenovo unveiled its range of six new phones – the most affordable of the line-up is due to hit the market a cool AED300 cheaper than the MultiPhone 5430. Yet Prestigio, and its parent firm, ASBIS, is unbowed in its conviction that their offering is stellar enough to compete.

“This is currently the fastest phone for browsing available because of the Intel processor,” says Hesham Tantawi, VP of ASBIS in the META region. “We also differentiate ourselves with the add-ons we include with the phone, for example, the push apps. If we look at someone like Khaleej Times, they had launched an application which we can now push to users in relevant markets,” he tells AMEinfo.

While push functionality is hardly a genuine USP, the fact that ASBIS is on board will certainly boost Prestigio’s chances in such a fierce market. The multinational parent distributor has a 28-year track record in consumer tech. Valued at $1.7 billion, the firm is no household name, but has been in the UAE for 12 years, working with the likes of Intel, AMD, Toshiba and Hitachi. Prestigio is a 10-year-old subsidiary, fully owned by ASBIS.

Beautiful on the inside

In the aesthetics department, the phone itself is only remarkable for being unremarkable. The real magic lies within – the beating heart that is Intel’s Atom processor Z2420 – equipped with the enchantingly monickered Hyper-Threading Technology. The little chip promises 1.2GHz of speed. Reasonable enough for the price tag.

The processor-centric phone runs the latest Android OS without any noticeable quirks or facelift. The marketing pitch seems to be based on ‘fast web browsing, responsive apps and effortless multitasking’.

As you’d expect for an affordable handset, with the MultiPhone 5430 you get a competent 8MP camera and an HD display. But the let-down comes with the measly 4GB of internal storage. Thankfully, there’s a slot for your microSD card.

“We are delighted to be working with Intel this first smartphone initiative which is part of a broader collaboration. It will support the main goal of our company, which is to create the quality, reliability and affordability that is important to our end-users,” says Yuri Antoshkin, Prestigio’s COO.

The device will be launched in Saudi Arabia next month and is then due to hit shelves across the whole of the Middle East simultaneously.

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Wednesday, July 3- 2013 @ 14:31 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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