Reliance Jio might announce 4G VoLTE enabled mobile phones under Rs 1,500 during this quarter. Reliance Jio has already changed the telecom sector by unveiling its 4G VoLTE service with free data and voice plans. The company could next disrupt the mobile segment with its budget phones.
Reliance was earlier rumoured to introduce Rs 2,000 VoLTE enabled feature phones but it now seems the devices will be even cheaper. Economic Times reports the company will announce 4G VoLTE enabled devices at Rs 999 and Rs 1,500 this quarter. Reliance Digital already sells 4G VoLTE smartphones with Jio 4G service for Rs 2,999 under LYF brand.
The introduction of budget 4G-enabled devices will see widespread adoption of 4G services. Recently, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said the cost of entry-level smartphones should come down to $30 (almost Rs 2,000).
"If VoLTE feature phones come into the market, then there won’t be a driving force pushing for the upgrade to smartphones; rather it will be an upgrade from feature phones to VoLTE feature phones," Faizal Kawoosa, principal analyst at Cybermedia Research told Economic Times.
The ET report says Jio's feature phones will push company's bundled apps like JioTV, JioMoney, JioChat and JioCinema. The feature phones will also have both front and rear cameras for 4G VoLTE video calling.
IDC and Counterpoint project India's smartphone market to register over 40 percent growth in 2017. Reliance Jio's move could force analysts to change that growth projection. Reliance Jio's feature phones are seen to drive demand for feature phones and affecting sales of smartphones in the longer run.