Reliance Jio Infocomm is assumed to offer customers of its 4G feature phone the option to return the handset before the specified period of three years and get the part of the security deposit back. People aware of the development said Mukesh Ambani led Jio is likely to announce the terms of the refund scheme in the next days.
The Jio 4G Feature phone called JioPhone is obtainable for beta testing from August 15. Pre bookings for the handset will start from August 24.
Reliance Jio is targeting some 500 million Indians who are still on using feature phones, they haven’t moved to a smartphone for reasons of affordability or may be they didn’t feel the need to use one. The company has signed up nearly 125 million subscribers so far, but there has been a slowdown of late in the pace of user additions, owing mainly to the limited number of 4G devices in the market.
Based on a report released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), Jio has added 3.9 million new users to its subscriber base in the month of April. The rival telecom operators like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, and Idea Cellular did not fare well in terms of wooing users. Reports by ET said that Bank of America Merrill Lynch said the refund of Rs 1,500 on the phone will be lower if the phone is returned prematurely. “Jio may have options for upgrades of handsets,” it said.
The JioPhone-a smart feature phone with 4G VoLTE support comes with a 2.4-inch QVGA display. The feature phone comes with with a dedicated button that enables search through voice commands. The phone supports 22 Indian languages and also has NFC support for the digital payments. It has to be noted that JioPhone customers will get additional benefits of free voice calls till lifetime at a monthly tariff of Rs 153.