Rs 2500 JioPhone @ just Rs 1500! How RIL is planning to recover losses

Jio has amassed more than 128 million subscribers since its launch last year

Reliance Industries’ telecom upstart Jio is footing at least 40 percent of the cost of its basic 4G phone, two sources familiar with the matter said, as it bets on recovering the investment by luring in millions of new customers.

The Jio Phone, rolling out this week for a refundable deposit of 1,500 rupees ($23.05), will cost at least 2,500 rupees ($39) to assemble, the sources told Reuters.

That means Jio will likely carry more than $150 million in costs for every 10 million JioPhones it sells.

And the company aims to build a subscriber base of between 250 million and 300 million users in the next two years, said one of the sources.

Reliance Industries did not respond to a request for comment.

Some Reliance investors may flinch at the cost of subsidies, but the scale of the outlay is a clear signal of the level of Jio’s ambition, as it targets an audience of some 500 million who still cannot afford smartphones in India.

Also Read : Nokia 8 with dual rear camera launched in India at Rs 36,999

Jio’s advanced voice over LTE (VoLTE) network only works with 4G enabled devices, inaccessible to many even at subsidised rates. The significantly cheaper JioPhone, however, will open the Internet to a less affluent segment of Indians for the very first time.

“The 3,000-rupee smartphone was not cutting it,” the second source said. “Reliance is making a bold attempt with this phone and data will be the key driver for them.”

Analysts estimate a majority of Indian feature phone users have an average revenue per user (ARPU) of rupees 50 or lower. JioPhone’s 153 rupees monthly plan for so-called pre-paid users aims to drive up this ARPU, the first source said.

Jio, backed by India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani, has amassed more than 128 million subscribers since its launch last year, by offering free voice and cut-price data for months.(more)

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Will iPhone X hurt iPhone 8 and 8 Plus sale? Here’s what experts say

Apple unveiled both iPhone X and iPhone 8 models, with the “super-premium” iPhone X starting at $999

As Apple gets ready to ship iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus before it opens iPhone X for pre-orders, a top analyst with Taiwanese business group KGI Securities has warned that iPhone X will cannibalise iPhone 8 orders.

According to Ming-Chi Kuo, the most famous analyst with KGI Securities when it comes to Apple, it is very likely that iPhone X demand will cannibalise iPhone 8 pre-orders.

“While it takes three to six weeks or more to ship new iPhone models after they are available for preorder, they see the iPhone 8 taking less than one to two weeks. This is due to the iPhone X cannibalisation,” StreetInsider.com quoted the analyst as saying late on Monday.

Apple unveiled both iPhone X and iPhone 8 models, with the “super-premium” iPhone X starting at $999.

Ming, however, said the new Apple Watch Series 3’s (GPS + Cellular version) could be a runaway hit.

“We estimate the preorder weighting of the GPS + Cellular version is 80-90 per cent. While not available in all countries, most users have pre-ordered the GPS + Cellular version because it offers phone and internet access functions without an iPhone and given the low premium of $70 over the GPS version,” the analyst predicted.

According to the Verge, while Apple Watch shipments are well below iPhone shipments, investors should start keeping tabs on this new product, with shipments expected to surge much higher than previous generation models.

Apple would launch iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, starting Rs 64,000, in India on September 29 while pre-bookings will start on September 22.

The iPhone X will come to India on November 3, starting Rs 89,000. (more)

Dual-camera Lenovo K8 Note launched in India, priced at Rs 12,999

This device has first stock Android (7.1.1), 13MP selfie camera, 5MP sensor with flash

Chinese smartphone maker Lenovo on Wednesday launched the much-awaited ‘ Lenovo K8 Note ‘ in India at Rs 12,999 (3GB RAM and 32GB storage version) that comes with a dual-camera setup (13MP+5MP sensor with flash).

The 4GB RAM and 64GB ROM variant will cost Rs 13,999. The device with first stock Android (7.1.1) has 13MP selfie camera that supports professional mode and flash (full-light LED flash) as well.

Lenovo ‘K8 Note’ will retail in venom black and fine gold colours on Amazon India, starting August 18.

Also Read : ‘Arbo’ powered Panasonic Eluga A3, A3 Pro launched in India

Ziox to invest Rs 200 cr in mobile assembly units; plans 4G feature phone

“This is the first global launch of a Lenovo product in India. ‘K8 Note’ comes packed with everything that our consumers would expect from a smartphone today – an eye-catching design, dual cameras, 10-core processor, great sound and, of course, the ‘TheaterMax’ technology that is the hallmark of the Note series,” Sudhin Mathur, Country Head, Lenovo Mobile Business Group, India, told reporters here.

‘TheaterMax’ allows users to view the content on your phone on a much larger virtual screen once they put on a VR headset and ‘Dolby Atmos’ ensures high-quality sound.

The dual camera set-up has a 13MP primary and 5MP depth sensor for better pictures and enhanced depth of field.

Reacting to rumours that the company was superstitious and didn’t launch the ‘K7’ series, Anuj Sharma, Head of Product Marketing (Smartphones) at Lenovo, said: “There was a K7 Note but that wasn’t killer enough. We skipped a generation, took a leap and made ‘K8 Note'”. Read more

Tim Cook explains why India could be the next China for Apple

Apple’s game plan is to turn India into the next China, not only in terms of sales but also manufacturing and exports

As sales of Apple’s flagship iPhone slow globally, the company’s bullishness that India will emerge as a major driver of volumes is causing an acceleration in its investments here.

In the last quarter alone, Apple’s iOS app accelerator, as well as its manufacturing unit run by contract manufacturer Wistron in Bengaluru, went online. These investments are in addition to the company’s overall investment in growing its sales channel and marketing more to consumers in India.

“We began to produce the iPhone SE there during the quzjbzarter, and we’re really happy with how that’s going. And so we’re bringing all of our energies to bear there. I see a lot of similarities to where China was several years ago,” said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, in a call with investors on Tuesday.

Apple’s game plan is to turn India into the next China, not only in terms of sales but also manufacturing and exports. The company has been engaged with the Indian government to receive sops for setting up full fledged manufacturing and not just iPhone assembly for over a year now.

The going is a bit slow due to India’s unwillingness to grant subsidies specific to Apple and the former is looking at a policy that can attract all smartphone makers to manufacture

their devices here.

Company News : While sales of the iPhone have been growing at a blistering pace in India, analysts said the growth Apple is seeing is nothing out of the ordinary. With a base of just 2-3 per cent of India’s overall smartphone market, Apple still has a long way to go, especially in convincing Indians to buy its latest iPhone each year.

However, everyone seems to agree with Cook’s reading that the India market will provide a significant opportunity for Apple to sell millions of its high-end devices.

Apple has for long maintained that as network infrastructure in India gets better, more customers will begin to see the benefits of owning an iPhone. This combined with a young population that is aspirational by nature is what could turn India into Apple’s next China.

Xiaomi Redmi 4 sale begins on Amazon: All you need to know about the device

The Redmi 4 is a capable smartphone with a perfect screen size and resolution. Watch hands-on review

Xiaomi’s latest budget offering, the Xiaomi Redmi 4, went on sale at 12 noon on Tuesday, exclusively on Amazon India. In the first flash sale that had taken place on May 23, the smartphone had seen a huge interest from buyers and registered a record sales number of a whopping 250,000 units within the first eight minutes.

According to Amazon. in, the Xiaomi Redmi 4 had recorded more than 10 million hits per minute on the site, after having received some 2.3 million ‘notify me’ alerts from customers since the launch announcement on May 16.

The dual-sim budget smartphone with VoLTE capabilities is the latest offering from Xiaomi and offers an all-round performance. The Xiaomi Redmi 4 smartphone is available in three storage and RAM options – 16GB/2GB, 32GB/3GB and 64GB/4GB — which makes it a perfect smartphone option for people moving from feature phones to smartphones or those preferring budget smartphones with ample storage and RAM.

The base model of the device, with 16 GB of storage and 2 GB of RAM, is priced at Rs 6,999.

Business Standard reviewed the device to check how it matched against its tall claims. Here is a detailed review of the device:

The made-in-India Redmi 4 smartphone is the latest addition to Xiaomi’s entry-level Redmi series and succeeds the popular Xiaomi Redmi 3S and 3S Prime, the smartphone that has recorded the highest ever online sales numbers in India – 4 million units in just nine months – according to the company. Read more

Samsung launches Galaxy S8; looks to recover from Note 7 fiasco

Two versions of Galaxy S8 launched; year ahead to be crucial with Apple’s new iPhone coming in

Samsung Electronics Co Ltd unveiled its Galaxy S8 flagship smartphone as it battles to regain the market leadership it lost to Apple Inc after the embarrassing withdrawal of the fire-prone Note 7s.

Boasting some of the largest wrap-around screens ever made, the long-awaited S8 is the South Korean technology company’s first new premium phone since its September recall of all Galaxy Note 7 smartphones equipped with fire-prone batteries. Samsung halted their sales in 10 markets, and the phones were banned from aircraft in the United States, denting a revival of the firm’s mobile business.

Two versions of the Galaxy S8, code-named Dream internally, were launched at a media event in New York on Wednesday, with 6.2-inch (15.75 cm) and 5.8-inch curved screens – the largest to date for Samsung’s premium smartphones. They will go on sale on April 21.

“We must be bold enough to step into the unknown and humble enough to learn from our mistakes,” D J Koh, the company’s mobile chief, said at the event after acknowledging that it had been a challenging year for Samsung.

US carriers T-Mobile US Inc and Verizon Communications Inc announced retail pricing for the smaller S8 around $700. The larger phone will sell for $840 at Verizon and $850 at T-Mobile. Read more

Also Read : Hero, Honda offer up to Rs 12,500 discount on BS-III two-wheelers

Apple to start making iPhone 6 and 6S models in India over next two months

Contract manufacturer Wistron will manufacture iPhones at its Bangalore plants

Apple Inc. will soon start assembling iPhones in India for the first time, say government officials familiar with its plans, boosting the company’s chances of gaining a foothold in the fast-growing market.

Taiwanese contract manufacturer Wistron Corp. will likely start making iPhone 6 and 6S models here in the next four-to-six weeks at its plant in Bangalore, said an official of the southern state of Karnataka where the tech hub is located. It will add Apple’s cheapest iPhone model, the SE, to its assembly line in about three months, the official said.

“Almost all preparations have been done for launching Apple’s first phase project in Bangalore through Wistron,” the official told The Wall Street Journal.

“We’ve been working hard to develop our operations in India,” an Apple spokeswoman said. “We appreciate the constructive and open dialogue we’ve had with government about further expanding our local operations.” A Wistron spokeswoman said the company doesn’t comment on “rumor or speculation.”

With sales cooling in China, long an engine for Apple’s growth, manufacturing iPhones locally would help Apple address what analysts say is its biggest problem in India: its smartphones are simply too expensive for the vast majority of people.

Smartphone shipments in India grew 18% last year, compared with 3% globally, according to Counterpoint Research, but the majority of phones sold here cost less than $150.

The iPhone SE, which some online retailers now sell for as low as $330, is still out of reach of most Indian consumers. Read more