Pepsi P1 Smartphone Takes Brand Marketing to New Level

Pepsi has announced plans to release the Pepsi P1 smartphone in China. Pepsi will not manufacture the phone, only use branding to target developing markets and build its soda brand.

PepsiCo has announced plans to release Pepsi-licensed smartphones in China in the coming months. Soda lovers need not worry, though. PepsiCo’s only getting into marketing with smartphones, not making them. The company’s hoping this phone and its related accessories can help Pepsi become the favorite soda of China’s rising middle class. If the campaign works, other companies might soon follow suit.

The Pepsi P1 was Presented on October 20

The Pepsi P1 smartphone was presented on October 20. The P1 features good, but not great, specs. Some features include a 5.5-inch display with a 1.7GHz processor, 13MP camera and 16GB of internal storage. The device is being built for consumers who want a decent smartphone but can’t afford a premium one. At a price point of around $205, the Pepsi P1 undercuts higher-end phones that Apple, Samsung and Xiamoi offer in China.

Surprisingly, this isn’t the first time Pepsi put its brand on a mobile phone for marketing purposes. In 2013, Pepsi unveiled the Oppo N1 Pepsi Edition. However, The Pepsi Oppo N1 was never sold and only used for promotional purposes.

PepsiCo Isn’t the First Company to Market a Mobile Device

PepsiCo is hardly the first company to license its name for use on a mobile device. Consumers in the United States will be familiar with the Amazon Fire line, Facebook phone and Motorola ROKR, which is otherwise known as the iTunes phone.

However, PepsiCo is one of the few non-tech companies to enter the smartphone realm. A company representative made it clear in an interview with ABC News that PepsiCo doesn’t have plans to become a smartphone manufacturer. This is simply a marketing opportunity that PepsiCo’s using to try and gain market share in the world’s largest country.

If PepsiCo is successful with this campaign, other non-tech companies might begin licensing their name to digital devices. As companies like PepsiCo continue to explore opportunities like this, the specs of the licensed devices will say a lot about the demographics that companies are targeting. In China, the Pepsi P1 shows that PepsiCo’s trying to court consumers who have discretionary income but not a lot of wealth — the country’s rising middle class.

Sources: ABCNews