Reliance Jio's Rs 500 4G feature phone, a reality or just hype?

Reliance Jio's rumoured 4G feature phone has, in all probability, stole the limelight from the future iPhones when it comes to leaks.

Reliance Jio's rumoured 4G feature phone has, in all probability, stole the limelight from the future iPhones when it comes to leaks. The reason being obvious; selling a phone at Rs 500 which is capable of handling 4G network, accessing media and internet, connect to WiFi and much more. If this phone materializes with the aforementioned price, it will definitely create a massive demand in our country where the majority still can't afford to buy a smartphone.
The phone is expected to be one of the major revelations Reliance Industries will make on its annual general meet (AGM) on July 21. Now, a new report from PTI claims that the company is constructing a strategy to expand the 4G market by a huge margin; a margin of 200 million 4G feature phones, within 2 years.
According to the report, however, this feat will be achieved by selling 4G feature phones priced within the range of Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,500 and not Rs 500. While we were aware that the device's manufacturing cost would cross the Rs 1,000 mark, many early reports suggested that the company would subsidize the device to bring down the price.
"Reliance has not yet finalised actual unit price of the feature phones, but it is likely to be in the range of Rs. 1,000-1,500 a unit. It will be smart feature phone with pre-loaded apps of Reliance Jio like Jio TV, Jio Money etc," one of the sources who did not wish to be named told PTI.
The source further added, "Around 10 million units are being planned for initial sales and the company has plans to increase inventory to 100 million in the first year and another 100 million next year. Discussions have started with Foxconn and Intex to make these phones in India.".
A source privy to discussions said Intex had approached RIL for bundling Jio service for a state government tender.
"Intex will bid for a state government tender which has huge requirement of low-cost mobile phone, but it wants bidder to come with a service provider. The economy of scale is enough to bring down the cost of phone. The discussion with RIL started for this tender and is now moving in direction for low-cost 4G feature phones," the source said.
He said Jio will use Qualcomm chipsets in 4G feature phones.
When contacted, Reliance Jio declined to comment. Intex said: "...we are exploring various business opportunities, including those with Reliance Jio, and would keep you updated about the details as they materialise. We also keep participating in various state governments' tenders and are always keen to work with them."

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