Do you remember phones from Sagem Wireless? Sagem phones were known for their pocket-friendly prices. But without warning, they simply disappeared from the store shelves. What happened to them? Read on to find out.
The below image shows what the Sagem MC 3000 and MW3020 looked like. They were identical twins and were perhaps the most popular Sagem phones in these parts back then. Many people had their first taste of GSM technology with a Sagem phone.
They were also the earliest set of Sagem models in the Nigerian market at the launch of GSM mobile technology in 2001. They were very basic phones, but were also durable.
These models just didn’t appeal to me and I never could bring myself to purchase one. The design made them look like something that a rhino ran over. But I did eventually own one Sagem model, the sleek MY X-5m pictured below:
Launched in 2002, the MY X-5 was a novelty of sorts, featuring a 256 pixel colour display, polyphonic ringtones, WAP 1.2.1 and if I remember well was one of the early GPRS models. It was love at first sight for me, and I snapped one up at the earliest opportunity. Anyway, I digress. Nostalgia is getting the better part of me. Let’s talk about what happened to this brand.
Here Is What happened To Sagem Phones
Sagem Wireless, the company behind those Sagem phones, was a French entity. The company eventually went bankrupt and was bought over and rebranded as MobiWire SAS in 2011. MobiWire is a white label manufacturer. In English, that means that they produce phones for some of the brands that you know, same way HTC used to produce phones for others (including i_mate) back in the day.
Beyond that, MobiWire, TECNO, and Carlware make up a conglomerate mobile brand called Infinix. The Infinix brand produces and sells self-branded android smartphones, including the Infinix Buzz (2.6-inch display plus QWERTY keyboard, BlackBerry-style form), Infinix Race (4-inch slab), and Infinix surf Smart (3.5-inch slab)
Sagem phones were known for pocket-friendly prices. Infinix continues that tradition. The above-pictured Buzz, for example has a 1GHz processor, 512Mb RAM, 512MB internal storage, 5 megapixel camera, microSD slot, runs Android 4.0 ICS, and is a Dual SIM device. Cost? About N16,000 (USD100) only.
And just so you know, Infinix mobile devices are available from stores in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Egypt (and in a fast-growing number of Asian and European countries). Infinix Mobile has since evolved into a sister brand to TECNO and itel, all under the umbrella of Transsion Holdings. Yes; the spirit of Sagem lives on.
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From 2001 when GSM phones were introduced in Nigeria till date, Mister Mobility has owned and used hundreds of mobile devices running proprietary, Java, Symbian, Palm, PocketPC/Windows Mobile, BlackBerry/BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, to Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.