November 24, 2011

Leading GDM operator Idea Cellular on Wednesday launched 3G Android smartphones to attract its existing 2G users to its 3G services.
“These smartphones will further drive our existing 3G services. Users will now be able to access the Internet through these devices. We are also studying if we should enter the 3G tablet market. But we have not taken any decision on it,” Idea Cellular MD Himanshu Kapania said.

However, he did not give a time frame by when he expects increased 3G smartphones penetration and also to increase the average revenue per user (Arpu).
“We don’t plan to enter the 3G handset business. Our objective is to create the ecosystem for 3G penetration and hit an affordable price point. We are also not subsidising these handsets for our users,” he said.
Idea has tied up with Chinese firm Huawei to source a 2.8-inch screen smartphones to be sold at Rs. 5,850, and with another Chinese company ZTE to source its 3.5-inch screen Blade smartphones to be sold at Rs 7,992, he said.
Though there won’t be any voice plan bundling, as a special introductory offer, Idea will offer data services worth Rs. 3,500 with its Rs. 259 pack, along with these 3G smartphones.
The Rs. 259 pack offers free subscription to Idea TV for three months, 1 GB of data download per month for three months, 3G ‘double dhamaka’ benefits for six months and a talk time of Rs. 25. This special introductory offer will be available for both prepaid as well as post-paid users.
“Worldwide, smartphones are witnessing rapid uptake due to their multitasking capabilities and vast range of applications. While data uptake has witnessed steady growth ever since 3G services were launched here, the progress and proliferation will be spurred with the availability of affordable 3G devices,” Idea Cellular chief marketing officer Sashi Shankar said.

From : The Hindu

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