The world’s cheapest smartphone is being commercialised in India at around $4 only. The launch of the device itself has been a controversial matter; mobile manufacturers deem the price reduction to be unfair, and have thus requested the government to look into the matter.
A $4 Android smartphone. Doesn’t this sound good to the ears?! But, is it even real? As a matter of fact, Indian company Ringing Bells based in Uttar Pradesh has revealed “Freedom 251”, the world’s cheapest smartphone ever: it costs only Rs 251, which is about $3.64.
But, wait, it does sound too good to be true. It is claimed that the very components making it up should cost much more than the price at which it is being sold; equipped with Android 5.1 Lollilop, Freedom 251 has a 4-inch touchscreen. It is powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core processor with a 1GB-RAM and 8GB of internal storage.
The firm is working on a range of cost-saving measures to be able to reduce the cost of such devices well below their normal price, says its president Ashok Chadha in a statement to AFP. One such measure is to assemble the phone in India itself which saves around Rs 400, according to Mr Chadha. To further cut down the costs, he mentions an online marketplace created on their website “by allowing other companies on the platform”.
Analysts are still sceptical though. Times of India reports that the device might be coming from Adcom which is an importer of IT products. The Indian Cellular Association (ICA) also believes the pricing and the subsidising should be subject to investigation.