An indian company Ringing Bells recently announced their phone Freedom251 to be the cheapest smart phone in the world. 251 comes from the price in Rupee which amounts to 4 USD or 2.5 GBP. This news suddenly caught attention around the world and became a hot topic in mobile industry.
The specifications of this phone is suggested as below.
4-inch qHD screen with IPS
1.3 GHz quad-core processor
8GB internal storage
microSD slot for up to 32GB of external storage
3.2MP rear camera with auto focus
0.3MP (VGA) front camera
1450 mAh battery
Android 5.1 Lollipop
When the phone was revealed to public, it was understood that the phone was actually bland rip-off of Apple iPhone with Android operating system on top. Phones had a back case with Indian Flag but the front side has a correction fluid on the main brand. Journalist removed it and amazingly phones had another brand Adcom. Apparently that same phone was already on market for around 40$. So clearly launching of this phone was failure and questions began.
The phone was supposed to be produced in India, but the company Adcom is Chinese and they had no idea their phone would be used for this display. Founders of Freedom251 said they had little time to prepare so they used a similar phone with the same specs.
However, their phone on their webpage was still quite different with more modern edges. Later they changed this image too, making it clear that they have no idea how their final product will look like.
Strangely this poor launch was backed by an MP – Murli Manohar Joshi who praised the phone. This probably enhanced the hopes that the product would be supported by related Indian government schemes. This was later understood to be wrong when Bureau of Indian Standards declared this company has no certification to be able to manufacture phones in India.
Now we have a price of 251 rupee around 4 US dollars, but we don’t have a phone, no manufacturing agreement with any companies, no certificate for manufacturing. And on top of that, their contractor for call center – Cyfuture, is sueing the Ringing Bells for failure of any payment.
If you live in India, our advise is clear. Don’t pay anything to this imaginative product. It’s either a scam, or terrible planning. The company later said that the product itself will cost almost ten times more to manufacture but they are hoping to reduce this price with further measures such as creating an e-commerce market and using indian state schemes.
All the news so far, tells us that there is no agrement at all and all campaign based on promises.
We believe phones will not be delivered, or if some are given some phones, they will be second hand, extremely cheap android devices.