JioPhone Next launch on 10th Sept, but here is what Reliance wants from HMD Global, Samsung, Vivo, Xiaomi
JioPhone Next launch is expected to boost Jio's subscriber base immensely with some putting the number at 500 million. However, in addition to that, Jio is looking at OEMs like Samsung, Vivo, Xiaomi, HMD Global for SIM-locked devices with the intent of locking in subscribers permanently with bundled offers.
However, first comes JioPhone Next launch, which is just around the corner, with Mukesh Ambani led Jio set to roll out the affordable smartphone on September 10. With the arrival of the company’s first budget smartphone in partnership with Google, India’s largest telecom operator could be looking at extending its lead even further over its rivals in the country. The company already has over 400 million subscribers, and the arrival of this phone could push that number above the 500 million mark.
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According to a report by Business Insider, the company’s JioPhone Next could be aimed at pulling away feature phone customers from rivals, who are yet to use a smartphone. The report cites analysis from UBS Global, which places these customers at 300 million across both Airtel and Vodafone Idea, with 2G-enabled phones. According to recent statistics, Airtel has a total of around 352 million customers, while Vodafone India has around 273 million customers.
Jio - Big Picture
Even as the company prepares for the launch of the JioPhone Next, ET Telecom recently reported that the company is also adapting its strategy to offer SIM-locked devices, which are expected to be sold at retailers across the country. These handsets are expected to be made available via partnerships with OEMs like Samsung, Vivo, Xiaomi, HMD Global (Nokia) and others. Users would be able to buy these smartphones at a cheaper price than SIM unlocked devices, but using them with other carriers will not be possible -- effectively locking customers on the network unless they get a different device. This strategy is used mostly in the US. It was previously available in India, but was phased out due to being unviable then. However, success will depend on the deal that is being offered.