Reliance set to relaunch JioPhone next year
The COVID-19 pandemic has given a completely new perspective on the use of smartphones in India. This has prompted Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries to relaunch its 4G feature phone in the next quarter. The launch of the much-anticipated entry-level smartphone, developed in partnership with Google, is scheduled next. Undoubtedly, Jio is looking to dominate the low priced internet-enabled feature phone market.
In 2018, Jio had launched India's first 4G feature phone
To recall, Jio had launched India's first 4G feature phone which had an alphanumeric keypad, 2.4-inch QVGA display, SD card slot, a four-way navigation system, and Jio apps along with regular features, in 2018. Later, JioPhone 2 featuring a 2.40-inch display, a resolution of 240x320 pixels, 512MB RAM was launched. It runs on KaiOS and is powered by a 2,000mAh battery.
The strategy behind the launch in 2021: What has changed?
Due to COVID-19, work-from-home has become a norm among most professionals. In the educational sector, most schools, colleges, and universities have made a quick transition to online classes. On the entertainment front, OTT platforms have enjoyed a dream ride in the lockdown phase. The amount of data usage has eclipsed all records, and thus Jio wants to tap the domestic market.
A shift of focus - From data to hardware?
Till date, Jio has sold over 100 million units of JioPhone, which implies that nearly 26% of Jio's total subscriber base are JioPhone users. However, it had to step back when it started facing component sourcing issues, which seem to be resolved now. Jio is, hence, looking to make the most of the cash-rich Indian market in the present unlocking phase.
Market, competition, 5G and Reliance Jio
Evidently, an intense fight is on between Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel to grab customers from struggling Vodafone Idea (Vi). Jio is also working with Realme and other OEMs to lower down the prices of 4G handsets.