Technology trading manager "keen to avoid a race to the bottom" with rival retailers

Argos: We don’t want tablet price war this Christmas

Argos has stressed it does not want to lower the price of its tablets and tech this Christmas.

The retailer recently launched its own-brand £99.99 MyTablet, rivalling Tesco’s £119 Hudl and other retailers’ exclusive tablets such as PC World/Currys’ Advent Vega Tegra Note 7. But it doesn’t want to get caught in a price war with its rivals.

Simon Barry, Argos’ technology trading manager, told PCR: "The tablet market is interesting. We have already launched own brand tablets from CnM and Bush which have given us great insight for future concepts and brand ideas.

"We are keen to avoid a ‘race to the bottom’ and we have been clear not to range products at a really low price as we do not believe the quality is there. As with any product, including own label, you need to understand the target market well and build the proposition from there.

"There will be more products coming to market within the industry in the lead up to Christmas so it will be interesting to see how some of the new ‘own-brand’ products perform in the marketplace and whether consumers have the confidence to buy from retailers without electrical expertise."

Barry added that the tablet market will adapt as personalisation becomes more important to the user, and says that Argos’ ‘tech-cessories’ offers customers a range of different cases, covers, headphones and more.

He also said that the 2013 Christmas trading period could be "more extreme" in terms of retail competitiveness compared to last year.

"The tech marketplace is always really busy at Christmas and I expect this year to be no different," he commented. "With the battle of the new video game consoles and a whole host of new tablet options for customers, it could be even more extreme this year.

"We will always aim to be as competitive as possible and want to bring some fantastic products at exceptional prices to the market for this Christmas. Argos customers expect great ranges, choice and value from us and, from the plans I have seen, they will not be disappointed."

Read the full interview with Simon Barry in the December issue of PCR, out at the end of this month

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