Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) Rivaled By Obi Mobiles for Low-end Smartphones

Obi Mobiles

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) seems to have mentored its former executive into becoming a rival. Former CEO, John Sculley, now with Obi Mobiles, has unveiled a line of new smartphones in Singapore that seek to target emerging markets where price points matter a lot in the purchase of gadgets.

Competition against Chinese Manufacturers

Obi Mobiles smartphones have been priced at between $70 and $200 and will compete for market-share against well-established brands from the likes of Xiaomi and Lenovo. Sculley reiterates that Obi Mobiles seeks to differentiate itself from other low-end smartphones being sold by Chinese manufacturers by going for a distinctive design and focusing on branding while using the global distribution network.

Obi Mobiles has been on a recruiting mission having tapped into a number of top executives from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) as it looks to position itself in the smartphone arena. The company has already poached former Apple’s director for industrial design and chief designer behind Beats electronics, Robert Brunner. Sculley has stated that the company seeks to target the younger (13-24-year-old) generation who would wish to own an iPhone, but don’t have the financial capacity to purchase them.

Obi Mobiles Targeting the Youth

To address the needs of the youth, Obi Mobile claims that its devices offer top quality audio with extended battery life, perfect for listening to music and watching videos while also featuring other high-end features. Obi Mobile is at the moment targeting emerging markets of India and Middle East with the latest products being sold in Singapore via Lazada e-commerce platform. The company seeks to tap into the Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa emerging markets by Mid-2015.

Sculley believes Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) founder, Steve Jobs, would have respected Obi Mobiles for making devices that are affordable as long as they were well designed. The unveiling of the new products by Obi Mobile comes in the wake of increased of smartphone adoption in emerging markets.