The delivery of the phone will commence from June 30
A cheap smartphone is now a reality, thanks to an Indian company Ringing Bells. The company developed its $4 Android phone amid controversies, when it first mentioned in February that it would release the low-cost smartphone soon. Many at that time did not pay heed to it. The company has decided to start shipments for the $4 Freedom 251 on June 30, this year.
According to the company, it is ready to deliver more than 200,000 units of the smartphone to its customers in the first phase of delivery. Despite the delivery starting later this week, Ringing Bells still has to do a lot of work as it received about 70 million registrations for its smartphones. It plans to complete the first delivery phase before it opens the registration again.
The low-cost mobile phone has made it difficult for the company to survive. CEO Mohit Goel said that he loses about $2 on every handset he manufactures. But despite that, he is hopeful that he will be able to make money out of these phones by selling them in bulk. He also believes that the demand will continue to soar due to its low cost.
It was Mr. Goel’s dream to bring a low-cost smartphone for people who live below the poverty line in the country. He believes that the phone will help to connect the poor people, as part of Digital India campaign. Despite the huge population, most Indians are deprived of basic Internet and mobile phone facility in the country, as it is out of their reach.
Freedom 251 is powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core processor with 1GB RAM and internal memory of 8GB. This 3G phone supports up to 32GB external memory as well. The phone has a primary camera of 8MP with flash, while the selfie camera is 3.2MP. It contains a 1,800 mAh battery and will run on Android Lollipop.
The phone will be available in two colors only, black and white. As it runs on Android, the company has made sure that the smartphone has all Google apps installed that are required to run its software. However, shipping these smartphones has been marred with many controversies.
When the company released some prototypes of its phone in February, it was found that the smartphone is a refurbished look of Adcom Ikon 4 phone, which is available for $54. The controversy marked an investigation as to how a company can sell a phone for $4, when it is almost impossible to sell it below $51, even after giving all possible subsidies.
Now, with all the controversies put aside, Ringing Bells has plans to ship more than 2.5 million orders by the end of the current month. It has also planned to ship 200,000 units of smartphone every month afterward, in order to fulfill the demand. It needs to be seen how the Freedom 251 will perform as we are yet to see a normal smartphone in this price range.
If you thought that Ringing Bells would only manufacture low-end smartphones, you were wrong. In the first week of July, the company has plans to roll out its low-cost LED TV, called Freedom. The 32-inch TV will be available for less than $145 while other TVs in the same size are available for minimum $190 in the local market. This would make it the cheapest TV in the country.