Jio launched few years ago, Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance took the country’s telecom space by storm. Today, the company seems to be planning on repeating history, but this time with smartphones at the entry stage.
Reliance is in talks with domestic smartphone manufacturers to make a version of the company’s popular Jio phone that can run Android, according to a Bloomberg report. The company has reportedly asked local suppliers to ramp up production capacity so that over the next two years they can manufacture as many as 200 million smartphones.
Reliance ‘s attempts come at a time when, among other electronic devices, the Indian government is pushing for domestic smartphone manufacturing and production. Many smartphone manufacturers, including Apple, which is also launching its official online store in the country by 23rd September , have expanded their manufacturing capacity in the country.
We are trying to develop our domestic companies, of course. “In entry level phones, we have a sweet spot,” said Pankaj Mohindroo, Chairman of the India Cellular & Electronic Association. “The world has realised that India is an excellent place to do business and also a fantastic place to do development.”
Reliance’s new collaboration with Google, where the companies revealed that they will work together on ‘affordable 5G smartphones’, is also noteworthy. Google will spend $4.5 billion in Jio in that relationship, and will collaborate on technology initiatives. This relationship, however, is still under regulatory scrutiny, meaning that Reliance is currently operating alone on this smartphone programme.
This is not the first we hear of Reliance’s plans to make Android smartphones affordable, an earlier report indicated that the company hopes to start selling these phones by December 2020.