After a series of many leaks and revelations, Reliance on Friday unveiled its much-awaited 4G VoLTE-enabled feature phone, dubbed as “JioPhone” at the company’s 40th Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Mumbai that was helmed by Reliance Industries Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani. Mukesh Ambani called the new JioPhone, ‘India ka smartphone’ as the new Jio 4G VoLTE feature phone comes loaded with features like 4-way Navigation key, microSD card slot, FM Radio, Internet browsing, rear camera, torch light and much more.
For Reliance Jio, a 4G VoLTE feature phone could be a game changer. Reliance Jio, which made its commercial debut in the Indian telecom sector as a telecom operator in September last year. Unlike other existing giants like Vodafone, Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular, Reliance Jio is an entirely 4G VoLTE network, this means even calls are conducted over the 4G VoLTE network, rather than the conventional networks. So a large number of feature phone consumers in India can easily join with the Jio network.
JioPhone Pricing details:
As far as pricing details are concerned, the Jio 4G VoLTE feature phone has been launched in India with an “effective price” of Rs. 0 (Zero). Yes, you read that right. The feature phone, targeted at 50 crore feature phone users in the country who have not been able to subscribe the Jio 4G VoLTE network due to high costs associated only with smartphones. As we mentioned, the JioPhone is effectively free, but to protect the misuse of the free offer, the company is collecting Rs. 1500 as a one-time refundable security deposit, which will be will be 100% refundable after three years.
Today, I am delighted to announce that JioPhone will be available to all Indians for an effective price of – Rs 0: Mukesh Ambani
— Reliance Jio (@reliancejio) July 21, 2017
“We plan to collect a fully refundable, one-time, security deposit of Rs 1,500 with everyone. From 15th August 2017, all Indians will have access to the highest quality & quantity, affordable & unlimited data,” said Reliance Industries Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani, adding “This is how Jio will end the digital exclusion in India. And this is what I call true digital freedom.”
Reliance JioPhone release date and availability details:
The new Jio 4G VoLTE feature phone will be available for user testing in beta from 15th August, while it will be up for pre-booking from August 24 from the MyJio app and Jio physical retail stores across the country. Interested customers who pre-book will be able to buy the phone from September 2017, on a first come first serve basis. The company’s Chairman said 5 million JioPhones will be made available every week.
“From August 15, I am declaring digital freedom for all feature phone users. Jio will give them access to unlimited data on the Jio Phone,” said Mukesh Ambani.
Reliance JioPhone plans:
Starting August 15, JioPhone will give users free voice calls, unlimited data to feature phone users, and subscribe to Jio apps for free. JioPhone also comes with separate Dhan Dhana Dhan plan at Rs 153 per month plan that offers unlimited voice calling and SMS, free mobile data without any cap along with Jio apps. Also, the company has launched a new JioPhone TV pack for Rs. 309 to mirror their JioPhone content on any TV via a cable that can even be plugged into CRT TVs. Besides this, the company has also announced daily and weekly recharge sachets– Rs. 24 for two days and Rs. 54 for one week, for those users who don’t want to commit to going for monthly plans.
Reliance JioPhone specifications and features:
In terms of specifications, the Reliance JioPhone feature phone comes equipped with a 2.4-inch QVGA TFT display with a screen resolution of 320×240 pixels. Under the hood, the device is powered by a latest 1.1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 205 dual core processor coupled with 512MB RAM. In terms of memory, the feature phone comes with 4GB of internal storage, which can be further expanded up to 64GB via a dedicated microSD card slot. In terms of optics, the JioPhone features a VGA camera at the rear. On the connectivity front, the JioPhone is a dual SIM feature phone that accepts two SIM cards- one for 4G LTE Cat4 connectivity, and the other one for 2G connectivity.
— Qualcomm India (@qualcomm_in) July 22, 2017
Other features on the feature phone include music/video player, wireless FM Radio, Alphanumeric keypad, 4-way Navigation key, torch light, a 3.5 mm headphone jack, internet browsing, ringtones, phone contact and much more. The phone also comes pre-loaded with Jio Music, Jio Cinema and Jio TV. It also supports NFC that enables tap-and-pay payments through UPI as well as debit and credit card payments. Apart from this, the Jio 4G VoLTE feature phone includes SOS feature, which can be activated by pressing “5” key on the keypad to call an emergency number. The JioPhone supports all languages including 22 major Indian languages, and users can also communicate with the JioPhone via voice commands. On the battery front, the handset packs a decent 2,000mAh battery.