BIC: from stationery icon to mobile phone company

BIC: from stationery icon to mobile phone company

In case you haven’t read this elsewhere (I haven’t, but the press release is dated 11 July): BIC, the French company whose name will infinitely be linked to ballpoint pens – in fact, in Belgium, Greece and France, the name has even become downright generic – has set up a partnership with Orange and Alacatel to market a basic mobile phone aptly named the BIC Phone. Who needs further proof that cellphones are now nothing more than a commodity?

Presented as a basic handset that’s “100% ready-to-go,” the BIC phone comes packed just like one of its razors and includes a SIM card, 60 free minutes and a fully-charged battery. This makes the new handset ready to be used right after you buy it, hence it could be a perfect secondary or emergency phone. Built by Alcatel, the BIC phone measures 98 x 44 x 12.6 millimeters, weighs only 61 grams and has a battery capable of providing up to 4 hours of talk-time and up to 240 hours of stand-by time.

As from August 7, the BIC phone will become available across France in two colors (citrus orange and lime green) for a retail price of 49 Euros (about $77 USD), including tax. The handset will be sold over the counter in supermarkets, as well as in convenience stores, like tobacco shops or stores from train stations and airports.

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