Reliance Jio is now planning to launch affordable 4G smartphones in collaboration with Google. The company has already started working with Google for developing a competitively priced 4G smartphone and software for smart TV services.
As reported by Business Line, these 4G smartphones will work exclusively on Jio 4G network. This partnership with Google will not only help Jio get a wider market reach for its 4G smartphones but will also ensure tight integration of Jio apps into the Android platform.
“I think two big things, one is from our side — we are committed to making even cheaper smartphones. […] The right price point for smartphones in India is $30, and pursuing high-quality smartphones at the price point will unlock it even more,” said Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, during his India visit.
Little did we know that Jio would take up this opportunity to collaborate with Google for launching such an affordable smartphone.
“Hopefully, we can all push and make $30 smartphones happen,” Pichai added.
According to the sources familiar with the matter, the affordable 4G smartphones developed by Google and Jio will be launched by the end of the year.
This partnership will benefit Google by giving it access to a large number of first-time mobile internet users. Thus, the company would in a good position to assess its low-cost smartphone strategy.
Will It Affect LYF Brand, VoLTE Feature Phones, And Android One?
It is worth noting that Reliance Jio already has a smartphone lineup, which it sells under the name of “LYF”. The company has recently asked its Chinese and Taiwanese Original Device Manufacturers (ODM) to make its Lyf branded 4G smartphones, smart set-top boxes, home automation, and automobile telematics devices.
The company is also reportedly working with Lava International and some Chinese OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) to make its VoLTE feature phones. These Android-based VoLTE feature phones will cost Rs. 999 and will come bundled with unlimited voice and video calling along with digital content. These phones will be launched to target the rural market where the main use of mobile phone is only to make and receive voice calls.
Besides Foxconn, Reliance Retail is also currently working with a number of Chinese ODMs for procuring 4G VoLTE smartphones and pocket routers including brands like ZTE, CK Telecom, Wingtech and Tinno Mobile.
Reliance Jio is working on multiple fronts via its sister companies for launching low-cost mobile devices including VoLTE feature phones. It might be so because the company wants to validate its various strategies aimed at different user segments ranging from feature phones to entry-level smartphone users to flagship phone users.
It would be too early to comment on the fate of LYF brand and Google’s ‘Android One’ since both the companies have not announced anything officially and only seem to be validating their strategies.
However, we would be very much interested to know how a Rs. 2,000 Android 4G VoLTE smartphone will not eat into the market share of Android One and affect Jio’s VoLTE feature phone plans.
Do share your thoughts with us by posting a comment."Reliance Jio & Google Working Together to Launch $30 4G Smartphone & Smart TV Software",