Feeds

Amstrad product of the century looks expensive to us

Pricing predicated on low email usage

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Amstrad today launched its "product of the century", aimed at low email users - or the rich. Amstrad e-m@ilerAmstrad chief Sir Alan Sugar claimed the "e-m@iler" gadget would take high technology to the high street. The device is a telephone, answerphone, fax, personal organiser and monitor, with email facilities, all rolled into one. Its pull will undoubtedly lie in its shop price - £79.99. Sir Alan told journalists in London that the company would sell the hardware at below cost, but would gain revenues from advertising and call charge revenue. It was revealed that users will have to pay 12p for every emailing "session". This will let them receive as many emails as they please. But there will be an additional cost of 12p for every email sent. So someone replying to an average of just ten emails per day would pay around £1.40 per day (once you roll in the VAT), or £42 per month. Then there's the usual online call charges – which should be low as people will write emails offline. All told this could add about £150 per month to their quarterly phone bill - double the initial cost of the device. Users will also have to sign up to Amserve, Amstrad's ISP service. This Amstrad subsidiary, together with BT, will cream off the call charge profits. Ian Sanders, Amstrad product manager, said the e-m@iler would be aimed at users with "very low usage". He said the target audience would be young people who had a PC at work, but didn't want to splash out for one at home. Sir Alan suggested the company would also target the machine at the non-PC savvy British masses. "It's so easy to use. As long as you've got two fingers you can send email." The gadget, which does not offer Web surfing abilities, is said to be "futureproof" as the technology in it will be updated when punters go online. Software upgrades will be downloaded automatically, making it a product "to sit in the home for a long time", Sir Alan said. It can store up to 700 contact details in its address book, and includes a portable "pocket docket" organiser. It will also have a caller identifier to show users when they have email. Amstrad said it expected to sell one million units to British homes in the next two years. It will have to compete with email-able TVs, but Sir Alan said he was not a great believer in the set-top for Internet capabilities, describing it as "a dumb box". Revenues will also come from advertising as users will get tailor-made ads on their screens. "We've thrown everything in, including the kitchen sink," said Sir Alan. The first 500 trial e-m@ilers are available in Dixons from today. They are expected to be available in volume in three weeks' time.® Related Stories Amstrad leaks like leaky thing over 'Web phone' launch Amstrad doubles profit Internet TV, M@ilTV prepare to do battle

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.