Tuesday, 25 August 2020 08:37

realme's Yang says company focusing on three key smartphone features

realme Australia managing director Andy Yang. realme Australia managing director Andy Yang. Courtesy realme Australia

The managing director of the Chinese smartphone company realme in Australia says there are three features that smartphone buyers across the globe look for: a large screen, a big battery and a premium camera.

Andy Yang told iTWire in response to queries that realme, which burst on to the scene just short of two years ago — October 2018, to be exact — was focusing on these factors in every new device it sought to bring to market.

realme was set up under Sky Li, a former vice-president at OPPO, another Chinese brand that has been a success in a number of countries. realme phones were first marketed in 2010 as OPPO Real. realme entered the Australian market on 17 October last year.

The brand has made remarkable progress and in order to understand what is behind this, iTWire asked Yang to answer a few questions.

iTWire: What is the competition like between the different Chinese brands like the BBK group brands, Xiaomi, Huawei and other smaller names?

Andy Yang: As a brand, we tend not to focus on the competition, but instead prioritise making innovative products accessible to all. It is this strategy that has enabled realme to become the world’s fastest growing smartphone brand, growing by 11% in Q2 of 2020 alone and finishing the 2019/2020 financial year with 40 million global users while maintaining a position as 7th in the global smartphone market.

We aspire to be known globally as the brand that delivers the best pound-for-pound tech products on the market. We, therefore, focus less on what competitors are doing, and more on our rigorous R&D and continuous product improvement. This way, we can fulfil our mission of ensuring that we arm more young consumers with premium products that are available at an affordable price.

andy yang2

Andy Yang: "Since launching in 2018, we have expanded into 59 markets and have 40 million users." Courtesy realme

What do you find Australians are looking for in smartphones as opposed to other markets realme operates in?

We’ve found that both in Australia, and countries globally, consumers are starting to realise that they don’t have to spend a fortune to access cutting-edge technology and premium smartphone features.

Our sustained success, rapid growth and increase in sales volume since launching within the Australian market in October last year is a testament to younger Aussies seeking the latest technology and smartphone functionalities all for an affordable price.

From our research, we’ve also found that our consumers across the globe prioritise three core smartphone functions: large screen, large battery and a premium camera. We consider these functions in the development of every realme device launch in Australia, while also updating and adjusting our products in a timely manner to meet changing market needs.

An example of our continuous updates and adjustments includes the development of 125W UltraDART Flash Charging technology, which will aim to charge smartphones equipped with a 4000mAh battery to 33% in just three minutes.

This latest technology development demonstrates our passion for research and to explore new opportunities so that we can continue bringing more exciting product features to the Aussie market.

Earlier this year realme released a 5G phone which Counterpoint analysts said would be the one to beat. When do you plan to release the X50 Pro 5G in Australia? And why have you delayed it?

It’s our aim to bring 5G devices into the Australian market, which have premium features and functionalities available at an affordable price. But in order to align our 5G devices with the Aussie market requirements, we are undertaking thorough R&D to finalise products prior to launching. This R&D is critical in aligning our 5G innovations with Australian market demands, customer needs and partner requirements.

What markets have seen the best reception and where do you plan to launch next?

Our products have been well received across the globe. Since launching in 2018, we have expanded into 59 markets and have 40 million users. It’s our goal to achieve 50 million smartphone sales in 2020 and 100% year-on-year growth.

In order to fulfill these goals, we will prioritise connecting with a broader range of consumers globally and arming them with an even more innovative range of devices. Watch this space!

If you could name one feature of realme that marks it out from the rest of the brands, what would it be?

At realme, we dare to leap. We overturn fixed structures, prioritising innovation and progress and this is reflected in our product design, performance and quality.

We know exactly what our customers value the most. Our R&D team makes up more than 50% of our total workforce. This team develops deep insights into our customers, which we use to ensure our innovations align with their needs and desires.

These insights, coupled with our business model, enable us to update and adjust our products in a timely manner according to market demand. We continuously leap into creating innovative new products on a rapid and regular basis.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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