We’ve been hearing about Reliance Jio working on a new VoLTE-enabled feature phone for quite some time. Previous rumors have indicated that the new feature phones are designed to bring the feature phone users onboard with LTE connectivity. While a few unconfirmed details have been known, a new report reveals that the top-end version of Reliance’s VoLTE feature phone will be priced at Rs 2,369.
According to 91Mobiles, Reliance will be launching the VoLTE feature phone under its LYF series. The report further points out that the manufacturing costs of the two feature phones are Rs 1,730 and Rs 1,800. While the lower-end runs Speadtrum processor, the top-end variant has Qualcomm 205 chipset. The reported pricing of Rs 2,369 could be due to new GST regime. But the publication speculates the retail price could be much lower. ALSO READ: Qualcomm 205 mobile platform: Partnership with Micromax and Reliance Jio a gamechanger
Reliance Jio has rapidly gained over 100 million subscribers in India. However, the company still has miles to go and is most probably banking on the large feature phone user base in India. The feature phone users are largely not connected to the mobile internet.
A slew of studies in the past have suggested that the migration from feature phones to smartphones has been slow. This is mainly because that the price of entry-level smartphones haven’t really come down to meet the feature phones’ price. According to a study, about 148 million feature phones were shipped to India in 2016. Counterpoint Research anticipates about 140 million feature phones will be sold in 2017.
For Reliance Jio, VoLTE enabled 4G feature phones could act as the catalyst for its second round of instant boom in the country. It not only includes more users on its network, but also the adoption of its suite of apps/services like mobile wallet (Jio Money) and multimedia streaming services. ALSO READ: Reliance Jio’s 4G feature phone could be a masterstroke, here’s why