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Tesco shelves scheme to launch own brand smartphone

15 September 2014 - 11:30 by Simon Crisp

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Supermarket giant, Tesco, is not going to be joining Amazon in launching its own smartphone, according to Marketing Week. This means that the Hudl tablet will not get a more compact stable mate which is capable of making calls and sending texts.

It is only a few months since Tesco revealed its intentions to introduce a smartphone with the Hudl moniker attached. And, initially, its plans seemed ambitious, as it claimed its own device would be capable of taking on flagship devices like the Samsung Galaxy S5.

However, while it may have seen a gap in the market back in May, it appears that this has since been filled by a number of cut price, 4G-ready handsets. And with Amazon struggling to sell the Fire Phone in its native US, Tesco is clearly worried that there is simply too much competition around to make it a plan worth pursuing.

For Amazon, the main motivation behind launching e-readers, tablets and smartphones has been making it easier to allow users to carry out safe shopping online through its dedicated channels. In fact, the buying of content has been used to help offset the lack of profit that the company makes from selling these devices.

For Tesco, the Hudl tablet has been a modest success, due largely to its low asking price and solid set of specifications. But perhaps stretching the range to include a smartphone simply is not tenable, given that most of its customers will already be using an existing smartphone for safe shopping online.

A follow-up to the Hudl tablet is still apparently in the works, but perhaps Tesco will scale back its other device ideas, as it focuses its attention on selling products from other brands rather than building its own.