At the beginning of the year 2000, Ericsson launched the A2618 as a replacement for the very popular A-class family A1018s.
Ericsson A2618 offers WAP and SMS technology, it becomes the fourth Ericsson mobile phone with WAP function (the other belongs to MC218, R320 and R380).
Based on a new platform ‘Michelle’, it features a sensuous “S-curve” design and contains the latest developments in software and functionality.
The address book could store up to 100 telephone numbers and associated names in the phone’s memory with voice activated dialling and short cut keypad dialling for the first 9 entries. The call lists recorded the last 20 dialled, answered or missed calls.
The A2618s included time and date functions, an alarm clock, a stop watch, call timers and basic function calculator. It could also send and receive SMS text messages and allowed levels of personalisation by selecting from a range of pre-loaded ring tone melodies, by composing your own ring tone and by changing the external covers.
Three games were also provided on the phone, Tetris, Erix and E-Maze. Finally, limited Internet access was provided to mobile services using the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) over an SMS bearer.
It also features exchangeable Snap-On Covers that can be obtained as accessories: ISA-10, ISA-11 and ISA-12.
These covers enclose both the front and back of the phone, available in an extensive array of patterns and colours and have been chosen to satisfy every conceivable taste or demand.
Unfortunately, and realistically, this product was 2 years too late for the brand and for the market. Nokia had positioned itself as the fashion leader, and internal antenna were a selling and comparison point.
While the price point was low and there were many design and colour options for the cover, it was a product that had been designed based on market research and insight from previous years requesting a fast fashion, entry level product. Too little – too late.
Ericsson Press Releases
Ericsson unveils colorful phone that offers more than meets the eye
Thursday, February 24, 2000
Today at CeBIT in Hannover, Ericsson unveiled their most colorful mobile phone up to date – the A2618. Apart from being colorful, the A2618 also offers WAP over SMS. The A2618 can be personalized in many ways, by exchangeable snap-on covers, which come in many colors and patterns and by the start-up shows, where a user can be greeted by a favorite song and a picture of a loved-one or a celebrity when turning on the phone.
Based on new, innovative design platform the A2618 is the latest addition to Ericsson’s A-class family of phones. These phones are fun, easy to use and offer value for money. Measuring just 131x51x25mm and weighing a mere 140g, the A2618 contains advanced features such as WAP services, voice dialing/answering and profiles that let you adjust your phone to different situations. The phone also features three games. The A2618 will be available mid 2000.
“With the A2618, we are offering a colorful phone that is open for personalization and at the same time offer the possibilities of mobile Internet to an even greater group of consumers,” says Jan Ahrenbring, Vice President Marketing and Communications at Ericsson Mobile Communications. “Ericsson’s aim is to put WAP in all our mobiles because mobile Internet has something to offer everyone, not only businesspeople.”
The A2618 offers WAP over SMS, which is a network dependent feature, which will be available in selected markets. The A2618 is Ericsson’s fourth WAP-enabled product, following the mobile companion MC218 (available), the feature phone R320 (available during Q1) and the smartphone R380 (available during Q2) which all offer WAP over Circuit Switched Data (CSD).
“The main objective with the A2618 was to design a phone that would appeal to a quite large target group, ” says Jan Ahrenbring, Vice President Marketing and Communications at Ericsson Mobile Communications. “We have tried to put ourselves in the situation of intended users and analyze what values are important to them. What do they like and how are they thinking? In this case, the main design idea was to work with the dynamics of the s-curve to create imbedded tension in a welcoming rounded body.”
The look of the A2618 can be changed in uncountable ways with the all-new Ericsson Snap-on Covers. These exquisite covers encase both the front and back of the phone, are exchangeable, and come in a fascinating array of colors and patterns. Available as accessories, they let you enjoy color co-ordination, change the color and pattern on the phone to match your mood and even revitalize your phone by giving it a completely new look.
A2618 features unique start-up and shutdown shows. There is a standard Ericsson show with sound and animation. Another, called “My Animation”, the user can install by purchasing the infrared modem DI 28 and connect it to a computer. With this start up show the users can choose a specific start up melody or compose their own. This melody can be installed with a photograph of a loved one or favorite celebrity.
The A2618 uses both text and icons in its menu system and offers help texts if one would need extra guidance. Its full graphic display shows four lines of text and the Voice Dialing/Answering feature lets you contact someone simply by saying their name. Three interesting and amusing games are featured in A2618. There will be Tetris, Erix and Maze that will help you relax and unwind, or just keep you occupied between calls.
Two versions of the A2618 will be produced. The A2618s, and the A2618sc which features a complete Chinese interface, which allows you to send and receive Chinese SMS messages and also lets you store Chinese names in the Phone Book.
Ericsson A2618 Campaign for MTV
Ericsson News Center
Ericsson sponsors MTV Europe Music Awards 2000
Tuesday, October 03, 2000
The world’s top pop-stars will be there, and for the second year running Ericsson will sponsor the MTV Europe Music Awards. The awards, to be held in Stockholm on November 16th, will see the likes of Robbie Williams, U2 and the Spice Girls vying for Europe’s most coveted pop prizes. A TV audience of over one billion people is expected to tune into the festivities.
Ericsson will launch a limited edition of its A2618 mobile phone and enable consumers to vote for their favorite stars via their mobile phones on a special WAP-site. Ericsson’s ‘Make Yourself Heard’ theme will be used to increase brand awareness and brand perception among 16-25 year old consumers. The event is also an opportunity to promote the usage of the mobile Internet and its advantages for a modern young consumer.
The MTV Europe Music Awards 2000 voting website is produced by Ericsson. The website allows people to vote for their favorite artists and songs in the 21 categories, which are represented in the awards show. Needless to say, Ericsson has made sure that the website is accessible also through a mobile phone with WAP, Wireless Application Protocol.
“MTV is the only music property available on a global basis and together with other music related marketing activities, MTV helps us to communicate our comprehensive youth orientated product portfolio,” said Jan Ahrenbring, Vice President Marketing and Communication at Ericsson Consumer Division. “The MTV property and music is the perfect compliment to Ericsson products such as the MP3 Player, FM Radio, Chatboard and the customizable A2618.”
Ericsson has produced a limited edition MTV snap-on cover for the A2618. The cover comes in a metallic gold finish with vibrant decorations and will be sold through selected Ericsson retailers for a limited time.
Ericsson A2618 ‘I Love ///’ Limited Edition
“The ‘I love ///’ Limited Edition is no beauty at all but a real rarity since it was only available to Ericsson employees.
As far as I know it was only meant as a gift for those who developed the A2618s in Sweden as well as for those who developed the snap on covers in Nuremberg, Germany. There are no output figures but I guess the total number is quite small. I recall two more units that I have seen in someone’s collection.”