Android One and co. to be released on September 15
Google has been planning low-cost smartphones for emerging markets for some time now, but the plans might have materialized with the upcoming release of the new Android One smartphone. The aim of the Android One project is to release $100 smartphones for emerging markets such as India and so far, we’ve suspected an initial introduction due in October, but recent news have confirmed that the Android One line will probably come sooner than expected, on September 15.
We’ve learned that three mobile manufacturers have already come aboard the Android One project. The manufacturers supposedly are Karbonn Mobile, Micromax and Spice Mobile. From what we know, each smartphone manufacturer has the option to decide what kind of handsets they will make for the Android One line, the only thing we know for sure is that they won’t go over the $100 price set by Google.
Google has assured fans that the Android One line will offer quality products at affordable prices so we are really curious to see what kind of quality they are talking about since premium devices and even some mid-range devices go well beyond the $350 price mark. Google has oversight on the software each manufacturer uses in the Android One devices, so the devices will probably come with stock Android and a few pre-installed apps specific to certain locations. What’s neat about the deal between Google and the manufacturers who want in on the project is that Google will share resources and push automatic updates to headset owners. Rumors say that Google will also get involved with local carriers to create affordable plans with which Android One phones can be purchased.
One of the devices that were shown off by the company at a conference had a sub $100 price tag, 4.5 inch screen, dual-SIM and microSd slot, which are promising specs from Micromax. The purpose of releasing these cheap phones is quite clear: entry-level markets like India encompass billions of people who haven’t had the possibility of getting a smartphone yet and Google getting in on that market can only do good for the company and the beneficiaries as well.
We don’t know whether Google’s new software platform will be well received in other than the targeted countries, but considering the price tags Google is advertising, it might just make it. Since many people in fairly developed markets can’t afford smartphones either, it isn’t a bad idea to introduce the new low-cost phones world-wide, but we’ll have to wait and see what Google has in mind.
The Nokia X is the big rival Google might encounter after it launches the new line on September 15, with its strong build quality and $100 price. The Nokia X supposedly lacks in performance and battery competence, but it still remains a contender and might pose a threat to Android One, but it’s unlikely, in my opinion. Since Google has declared that there won’t be bloatware and specs won’t be sacrificed due to resource sharing between the search engine and manufacturing companies, we might just see some high-end devices go for low prices after the September 15 launch event.