Increased global demand for home working and education has led to a surge in consumer expectations towards the quality of their home networks, and in areas where fixed networks are not available, mobile networks are alleviating user's needs for fast and convenient coverage. Many mainstream global operators have lifted certain data restrictions on 4G traffic for users, and are providing employees and users with more reliable choices for smart connected products. Whether it's online workspaces, meeting facilities, classrooms, entertainment, or communications with friends and family, uninterrupted network coverage without dead zones has become a basic need for millions, if not billions of people around the world.
According to data from TSR Research, global shipments of smart connected products will continue to grow in the next four years. Operator orders almost dominate the shipments of this category. As a world-leading mobile terminal manufacturer, TCL Communication has long-standing partnerships with 140 global operators and channel partners, including the likes of EE, BT, T-mobile, Orange, Optus, TIM and others. These partnerships have helped drive significant growth in its smart connectivity business, including MiFi devices. Taking Alcatel Linkzone as an example, the pocket-sized, high-speed mobile wireless hotspot device converts mobile service into high-speed broadband, enabling households without fixed broadband services to maintain high-speed connections at home. Overall, TCL expects shipments of smart connected devices in the second quarter of this year to be double that of previous forecasts.
TCL Communication has provided mobile connectivity around the world through the operation of its two main global brands – Alcatel and TCL. Its smart connection business first began in 2008, and in September 2018, it officially promoted its Smart Connectivity Division to a higher strategic level, adopting AI x IoT as a central strategy to deliver on its ambition to provide safe and healthy products for its global users, which it achieves through a focus on home and mobile usage occasions. At present, TCL's smart connection products cover a wide range of categories, including Wi-Fi routers, mesh routers, MiFi devices, car module devices, children's smart watches, headphones, luggage/personal belongings trackers and pet trackers. When working in tandem, together with TCL's mobile phones, tablets, TVs and home appliances, these devices can combine to create an ecosystem of smart connectivity.
"As a global manufacturer offering a fully integrated ecosystem of smart products that cover virtually every aspect of our life, TCL has long been focusing on the health and safety of our end-users when developing our Smart Connectivity Devices," said Sharon Xiao, General Manager of Smart Connectivity Division at TCL Communication. "With the sudden and rapid onset of the current pandemic, these two needs have never been more important as people continue to spend most of their work and leisure time at home. In such difficult circumstances, smart connectivity technology has been helping to make our lives that bit easier and more efficient."
TCL has added many health and safety features to its products, especially products designed for children and families. All TCL Wi-Fi routers for example allow parents to control the time during which their children can access the internet and the websites they have access to. TCL's smart watch for kids, the MOVETIME Family Watch MT43K, enables parents to monitor their children's location, receive instant notifications when their children exit a preset safe zone or when they push the SOS button, and establish immediate contact through the watch's hands-free, 4G two-way calling and voice messaging functions. In addition to a daily activity tracker that counts steps, calories burned and distance walked, TCL is planning to add a thermometer to its next model of smart watches for kids. The thermometer will constantly monitor the child's temperature and send an alert to parents if the temperature strays outside a normal range. Children will also benefit from TCL's soon-to-be-released headphones, which protect hearing by limiting the output volume to a maximum of 85dB – the highest permissible sound level recommended by the WHO for sustained sound exposure of up to 8 hours per day.
Sharon Xiao said, "TCL Communication's existing footprint in Smart Connectivity Devices has allowed us to step up to the plate and do our part to help millions of families cope during these difficult times. We have a clear vision on how smart connection devices create better living spaces, and we will continue to further explore how our design-led strategy can help to improve the health and safety of our consumers, both now and in the future."