8 Dec 2004
Cordless Telephones(HKTDC Electronics, Vol 06,2004)
Cutting The Cable
Convenience and design are essential elements in cordless telephones, which are increasingly viable alternatives to mobile phones or their conventional counterparts for both home and office.
As one of the world's leading electronics manufacturing centres, Hong Kong is perfectly positioned to meet consumer demands for feature-packed, high quality and competitively priced cordless telephones.
These include the DECT, or digital cordless phones, that have gained universal acceptance as a standard product valued in both business and domestic environments.
DECT phone prices have fallen and specifications have improved to include many features such as voice-prompted dialling, base-station dialling, high capacity name and number directories, multi-base station working and interchangeable fascias.
While becoming more compact, digital cordless phones also offer increasing levels of performance including, in many cases, the ability to work with headsets.
Hong Kong is equally well versed in manufacturing standard cordless phones for those who appreciate the freedom to talk on the move. Vincent Gain Enterprise Ltd is one astute manufacturer that has seen the myriad advantages inherent in producing a range of cord and cordless telephones that it markets under the Maxtel brand.
Established in 1994, Vincent Gain develops about 50 new telephone models each year using quality ICs from Motorola, Toshiba, Samsung and Philips.
Vincent Gain produces 100,000 cord phones and 30,000 cordless units a month, including DECT models DCT-123 and DCT-128 and 2.4GHz cordless phone model VG-8001.
"We accept minimum orders of 3,000 units for all models, which we can deliver to the customer within 30-45 days of order confirmation," says marketing manager Gary Chow.
"Our main markets are the Middle East, Southeast Asia and Japan, and we will be promoting new models to additional international markets in the near future."
The company's phones are produced at a 3,800-square-metre factory in Shenzhen on the southern Chinese mainland, which employs 1,000 workers and is ISO 9000-certified.
Vincent Gain's workforce includes five in-house engineers who provide ODM/OEM/OBM clients with design and technical support and can produce prototypes in three months with a 30-day production lead time.
A-Team Technology Ltd, meanwhile, has specialised in cord and cordless telephones, telephone answering machines and DAB tuners since its establishment in 1999.
Current items include standard DECT models such as AD850 and DECT phones with digital answering machines like AD8703 that are proving popular with consumers in several major markets.
A-Team currently exports to the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Hungary, Poland, Turkey and Switzerland.
"We specialise in manufacturing telecom products for the modern consumer," says general manager Edmond Leung. "The European marketplace is highly competitive, so it stands as testament to our products that this is our major market."
The company's 9,360-square-metre, ISO 9002-certified factory in Shenzhen employs 1,000 workers, including more than 30 engineers in the R&D department.
Manufacturing under various customer brand names including BT, KPN, Tiptel, Logicom, Alto, Radionette, Cable & Wireless and AEG, A-Team produces some 25,000 corded and 20,000 cordless phones a month.
"We accept minimum orders of 5,000 units for either cord or cordless phones, which can be delivered 12 weeks after order confirmation," Leung adds.
Another company that has seen the potential of cordless phones is Tony-Roy Telecommunication Ltd, which was established in 1996 and markets its products worldwide.
Tony Roy manufactures 100,000 cordless phones a month and accepts minimum orders of 1,000 units, delivered two weeks after order confirmation.
"We have two approaches to our marketing strategy," explains marketing manager Neilson Lam. "The first relates to price competition, while the other concentrates on the features and functions of the various models we produce."
For example, current cordless models include two-line, recording and single dial phones that prove popular in markets like the Middle East, India, South America, Dubai, eastern Germany, Taiwan and South Africa.
They are produced at mainland factories in Fujian Province and Shenzhen that cover a total of more than 30,000 square feet and employ some 600 workers. "Future developments will include a new series of phone units with improved functions and trendier designs," Lam promises.
Production of cordless phones also continues to increase at Prod-Art Co Ltd, which was established in 1992 and also manufactures pagers, various electronic items and mobile phones.
Prod-Art's ISO 9001-certified plants in Huizhou and Shenzhen on the mainland employ 6,000 workers who produce 80,000 cordless phones a month for various major markets worldwide.
Prestigious clients include PTT Telecom, France Telecom, China MPT, China Unicom, Telia Mobitel, Tiger and Boots, notes marketing manager Vivian Ho.
"We accept minimum orders of 3,000 units of any single product, which we can deliver within 35-40 days of order confirmation," she adds.
"Materials used in our cordless phones originate from Taiwan, Japan and Korea, and our main export markets are the US, Europe, South America and the Middle East."
Demonstrating yet again that when it comes to quality communications, nobody does it better than Hong Kong cordless phone manufacturers.
WRITTEN BY SUZANNE DENNIS
Chi Tat (China) Electronic Ltd
Tony-Roy Telecommunication Ltd