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Tesco gets in Hudl muddle, budget 4G phone scrapped

James Temperton
9 Sep 2014
Tesco Hudl
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Supermarket will concenrate on launch of Hudl 2 tablet after shelving plans to launch a budget, 4G smartphone

Milk and bread seller Tesco has abandoned plans to flog a smartphone under its Hudl brand, saying that the market has become too competitive. The supermarket giant will now concentrate on the Hudl 2, which will launch "in the next few weeks".

The supermarket has already seen some success with its Hudl tablet, but plans to develop a Hudl phone have been indefinitely shelved. Earlier this year Tesco said it intended to launch a 4G smartphone to compete with other budget options.

"We were confident that we could offer customers something we saw was lacking in the mobile market: an affordable, quality 4G smartphone," said Robin Terrell, group multi-channel director at Tesco.

"As we developed the idea in the first few months of the year, we could see a gap we could fill for our customers. The technology sector is fast changing and constantly evolving and since then, the mobile market has become even more competitive.

"So in early July, I took the decision that we would put the phone on hold and concentrate on the Hudl 2 tablet."

In January Tesco announced that it had sold more than 400,000 Hudl tablets in three months. The Hudl, which was heavily promoted in its stores, went on sale for £119, undercutting rival devices such as the Nexus 7 and iPad Mini.

Tesco may still launch the 4G, budget Hudl smartphone in the future with the plans only "on hold". Tesco may have been put off by major smartphone launches from the likes of Amazon with the Fire Phone and Apple's iPhone 6, both of which go on sale this month.

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