While we’ve previously mentioned the emergence of a fashion contender to the watch – the cellphone, a new report titled “Fashion and Style in the Mobile Handset Industry” by an independent research firm, ARCchart, points out some interesting trends:
- Fashion boutiques have already started taking on handsets. So far we’ve had the Vertu, Siemens/ESCADA, Nokia/Versace and the now defunct Xelibri. In addition, fashion designers such as Kimora Lee Simmons, Diane Von Furstenberg, Anna Sui and Vivienne Westwood have readily extended their design expertise onto handsets from Motorola and Samsung.
- Currently the fashion and style strategies employed by major handsets are: the incorporation of fashion and styling elements across a handset portfolio; co-branding collaborations with fashion brands; formation of a handset sub-portfolio geared specifically at the fashion and style conscious market; and the establishment of independent, fashion focused handset subsidiaries. Nokia is the only vendor adopting all four strategies, while Sony Ericsson employs just one.
- Finally, here’s a clue on how much cellphone companies are placeing their bets on phones over taking the wrist watch market, ArcCharts based its forcast of 23 million fashion handsets by 2010 by mapping consumer purchasing behaviour in the wrist watch market onto a future, mature handset market.
Looks like I might be covering more than wrists in the future.