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Smart LTE 3: A Dinner Discussion On Smart's Marketing Strategy

A couple of days after getting to try Smart LTE live on Boracay's White Beach, and a few hours after I finished writing my thoughts on the marketing strategy of Smart for its LTE line of products, I got to talk with Jen Juan a.k.a. Sexynomad, and Peter Juan a.k.a. Adam Mordo. We finally met up after years of interacting online. Also present in our conversation was a representative for Smart.

In that conversation, I ranted about my thoughts on the marketing strategy of Smart LTE. Everything I outlined in the two previous articles was discussed at the dinner table in a cozy bar and resto frequented by foreigners on Bolabog Beach. As I put forth my consumer-friendly slant, Peter pointed out three things that Smart LTE's strategy seemed to aim for:

  1. "First In." Smart LTE, in Peter's theory, most likely positioned a launch that aimed to shortcircuit Globe's announcement of its 4G technology. Being the first to launch in a major way would seal Smart LTE as a brand in the consumers' consciousness and all future efforts by other companies would definitely pale in comparison to the Smart LTE launch. That is, unless Globe manages to top that.
  2. The "Gigil Factor." "Gigil, in Filipino, means a lot of different things. But in essence, it is a strong emotion that the person is itching to express, but is choosing to suppress it for propriety's sake. In this case, "Gigil" for Smart LTE, in Peter Juan's perspective, is that feeling of anticipation for the product: you itch to buy it, you're excited to buy it, but you can't, so all you can do is sit and stew. For Peter, this is a good thing, because the "Gigil" will cause you to go out and buy it once Smart LTE has been released in the market.
  3. The "Ramp Up" phenomenon. Just like the "Gigil Factor," the anticipation builds. You know that it's coming to the market, so you count the days till it's finally released. And when it does, you'll surely make a beeline for the stores that carry the Smart LTE.

This is all good. And the only thing I can add to the marketing discussion is that unless Smart has an effective follow up or gives timely updates on the status

While we can theorize all we can, the bottom line is that we can only wait till Smart finally releases the technology into the market. While we wait, Smart Communications is upgrading its existing technology to accommodate the Smart LTE line. As far as we're informed, an LTE device can connect both to 4G and 3G. I'm sure it will be able to connect to 2G GPRS as well. While 4G devices will be usable across the older networks, the hyper-speed technology it promises will not be maximized. Because as it connects to 3G or even 2G, its speeds will only be as good as the network can give.

On the other hand, the current 3G devices may be able to find the 4G network that LTE will utilize, but will only be able to connect to Smart's 3G network. That is why there is a need both for the signal towers and other network infrastructure to be upgraded, as well as to provide the devices themselves. On hindsight, maybe I shouldn't really complain. If the work of upgrading the existing networks is THIS intensive, I guess there's no other choice but to patiently wait. Seeing it working live, I know it will be worth this wait.

The Smart LTE technology is supposedly aimed at the Class A market or for corporate accounts. So consumers should expect that it would be a little pricier than the regular broadband. We're hoping that the Smart LTE will have plans affordable to the regular Juan as well, and as it is, here is waiting with bated breath for its market launch and availability.


Here is the Sexynomad's chronicle of her experience with Smart LTE.

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