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Slow Take Off for US$4 ‘Freedom 251’ Smartphone

by Rajeev Nair | Aug 08, 2016

The world’s cheapest smartphone at retail ‘Freedom 251’ is beginning to see the light of the day in some credible nos. Though the pace at which Ringing Bells is shipping them suggests that even achieving the .2 million target set for the pilot phase, could be an uphill task, at the promised price of US$4. The firm shipped the first lot of 5K devices in July and is now shipping the second lot of 65K phones.

Ringing Bells would be shipping these phones to almost half of the states in India. The firm had earlier missed its target of 2.5 million devices by the mid of 2016. While both our reports on the world’s cheapest smartphone at retail, (Report 1 available here and Report 2 available here) are sceptical of the overhyped promises made by the firm ,the second one though, also explores the possibility of Ringing Bells, replicating what Datawind managed in the Indian Tablet market.

Our recent estimates for the Indian Smartphone market, available here, from the Handset Country Share Tracker (HCST) service concludes to Feature Phone segment constituting 56% share of the overall handset market. This for sure is a segment ‘Freedom 251’ could initially target.



                             Freedom 251 - 2

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