Telefónica, China Unicom add Phicomm to device procurement roster

Telefónica, China Unicom, smartphone

Telefónica has struck a deal with China-based smartphone manufacturer Phicomm to offer one of its devices to customers in Latin America.

The deal is part of the Spain-based operator’s joint smartphone procurement programme with China Unicom.

The Phicomm C630 device will be available to Telefónica customers “in key markets” in Latin America in Q2.

Telefónica said the deal would accelerate the penetration of 4G devices and services in its footprint “at more affordable end-consumer price points”.

The partnership between Telefónica and China Unicom began last June when they announced plans to offer handsets from Lenovo and TCL to customers.

It builds on a number of other initiatives the two companies have embarked upon.

Last September, they announced plans to share their data centre capabilities as part of a broader collaboration in cloud services.

In January this year, they created a new joint venture in China that aims to promote Telefónica’s big data technology.

[Read more: Telefónica takes leap of faith as Smart Steps heads to China]

Telefónica and China Unicom said they planned to expand their collaboration in future joint common procurement activities and additional joint strategic initiatives.

At last week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Telefónica announced plans to use Huawei’s smart home platform to offer a range of services to its customers in Latin America.

Telefónica saw revenues and profits rise in 2015 as it began to focus on higher-revenue digital services such as fibre, smartphones, LTE and pay TV.

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