Micromax Launches Ultra Cheap Pouch-packed Phone at Rs 699
Micromax has just launched their cheapest phones: Joy X1800 and Joy X1850 which are priced at Rs 699 and Rs 749 respectively. These are basic feature phones, which have been packed in a pouch, instead of a box. Again, one of the firsts that Micromax has introduced in India’s fiercely competitive phone market.
Joy X1800 is powered with 0.08 MP back camera, a 750 mAh battery and an expandable memory till 4 GB. The company claims that the battery can provide 235 hours of uninterrupted service Whereas Joy X1850 has a larger battery of 1800 mAh which can last upto 600 hours. Both of these handsets have 1.77 inch screen, and has all the basic functions like FM, Alarm Clock, Flashlight among others.
GPRS is however, not available.
Joy X-1800 is available at their retail shops, but has not been listed on ecommerce portals. Joy X-1850 will be available in a week’s time.
A section of industry watchers, who have been following Micromax’s growth rate in recent years are actually surprised by this new offering. They have already beaten Samsung to become India’s largest handset vendor (and smartphone vendor), as they grabbed an impressive 22% market share during the Q4 of 2014 (October-December) as they sold 4.6 million phones, compared to 4.4 million by Samsung.
They are building a unique, trust-worthy brand name among Indian consumers, and are slowly becoming the #1 choice when it comes to Android phones. Hence, in the midst of such incredible growth story of medium range Android phones, what was the reason to launch low cost feature phones now?
It seems that market watchers are ignoring the fact that out of 21.6 million handsets sold last year, 23% of them were below $100 threshold; and 68% of all phones sold in India are feature phones. It is this huge market which Micromax wants to dominate, which was earlier spearheaded by Nokia. But with a management change in Nokia, their focus is now on high end Windows powered smartphones along with Lumia series, and feature phones are slowly drifting away from their focus.
In addition, Micromax wants to pitch this phone as the second device to smartphone users, who are always low of battery juice with their smartphones. These Micromax Joy series phones can be a perfect second companion for your smartphone!
Micromax has already started their own manufacturing hub in Uttrakhand, and all their mobiles and gadgets are now labeled as ‘Made in India’. Here, we have highlighted some interesting points which resulted in their astronomic growth trajectory in India.
However, their after-sales service is still questionable, and they have lots of ground to cover on this aspect.
Their new low cost feature phones can be described as yet another attempt to increase their reach and market share; and an attempt to become a mass player in this segment. But can it harm their overall branding?