Reliance Jio has started shipping the JioPhone in a phased manner, and has indicated on Twitter that everyone who pre-booked the device will be getting it by Diwali which falls on Thursday, 19 October. The JioCare customer support handle advises users to check their pre-booking status on the MyJio app, or dial 18008908900.
Dial 18008908900 to know your JioPhone pre booking status. Existing Jio custs can also view status in MyJio under Manage Voucher section
— JioCare (@JioCare) August 25, 2017
The JioPhone is available for a refundable deposit of Rs 1,500. Consumers can claim the amount by returning the phone after at least 36 months of use. Jio is bearing about 40 percent of the cost of the device in a bid to attract consumers. Jio hoped to sell at least five million devices, and there have already been more than 6 million pre-bookings. At the moment, users cannot book a device, but can register their interest on the Jio website. Jio has indicated that users will be informed once the bookings begin again. The costs for Jio is around $75 million for every five million devices that it sells. The new entry in the hotly contested telecom sector hopes to attract 250 to 300 million subscribers over the course of the next two years.
There are 22 major languages supported by the device, and users can use voice commands to interface with the phone. All the major applications by Jio are pre-installed on the handset. These include applications such as JioMusic, JioCinema, JioGames, JioKisan, JioPay and JioTV. Users will be able to make calls, send messages and play songs through voice commands, using the integrated voice assistant. The operating system on the device is KaiOS.
In terms of specifications, the JioPhone features a 2.4-inch QVGA (240 x 320 pixels) display. Below it sits a 1.2 GHz dual core Spreadtrum 9820A/QC8905 chipset with a Mali-400 GPU clocked at 512 MHz. There 512 MB RAM and 4 GB of internal storage which can be expanded up to 128 GB via a microSD card slot. The JioPhone packs in a 2 MP primary camera and a 0.3 MP front-facing camera for video calls. Connectivity options include a 3.5 mm jack for audio, 4G LTE bands, Wi-Fi, NFC, Bluetooth v4.1.
JioPhone has ushered in a new product category to extend essential internet services to the underserved. The disruption has led to smartphone manufacturers and telecom service providers to make plans for introducing similarly priced 4G LTE handsets, including Lava, Intex, Idea and Airtel.
We got our hands on the device, and it is a large-ish device packed with features only found in smartphones. The voice commands and physical buttons offers accessibility, and users can simply ask the device to play a particular song, send a message, dial a number or play back a movie. JioTV on the device allows users to watch a number of TV channels live on the device itself. Users can also get an accessory to connect the device to a television, even an old CRT monitor.
For more details on the device, interested readers can check out our first impressions.
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