Reliance LYF Smartphones Debut on Amazon

Reliance Jio has begun sales of its LYF branded devices online, exclusively on Amazon. LYF Water 5, a 4G mobile was launched on 7th of May. LYF handsets were launched on Reliance Digital, Digital Express and mylyf.com in January. LYF Water 5 is only available on Amazon, and retails at Rs11, 699.

LYF smart phones

Since the launch of the smart phones, LYF has quickly risen up to own about 7% of the smart phone market. In a segment dominated by Samsung, LYF is the 5th largest player, having sold more than 1.5 million devices by April.

Available in variants namely – Fire, Earth, LYF Water 1, LYF FLAME 1 and Wind, these phones fall in the range of Rs 5,490 to Rs19, 499. Reliance is currently in talks with several other retailers both online and offline including Flipkart, Snapdeal, Vijay Sales and Mobile Store, etc. Additionally, further plans may include brick & mortar stores which would help amplify the sales. An anonymous source suggested that many more tie ups and devices may already be underway.

Reliance Jio

The Mukesh Ambani owned Jio aims at providing quality broadband and digital services across India. Although currently the focus is on smart phones, it will soon be providing 4G services, along with content options for television sets. The largest owner of telecom spectrum in India, Reliance Jio currently is offering trial sim cards on invite basis only. Reliance employees can refer 10 individuals each, who are to receive unlimited calls along with 4G data for the next three months. This applies exclusively to LYF smart phones – along with the smart phone, the referral can get you the trial sim card. Earlier they were made available to more than 5 lakh users consisting of Reliance employees, major stakeholders, vendors, close associates, etc. Having opened a slight window to the public, this might be the true test for Jio as it provides a safe platform to check customer satisfaction and the efficiency of the network in real life.

Jio’s planning consists of having over 3,000 service engineers on board, and the extensive division of India into 1100 markets with one Jio centre each to facilitate better service.

Future Plans

Jio plans to release products such as dongles, cameras, wearable electronic accessories, etc. under its LYF brand. Following Reliance’s quarterly report, the head of Strategy and Planning, Anshuman Thakur said, “We want to have an extensive testing phase because it is for the first time that it’s being launched anywhere in the world on this scale.” Jio is currently awaiting the acquisition of the 800 MHz spectrum from Reliance Communications. Thakur added that the commercial launch will soon follow the trials.

In order to amplify the sales of Jio and LYF devices, Reliance plans to add 80,000 signboards at outlets selling smart phones, in addition to using traditional and digital advertising.

A Morgan Stanley report, dated 25th April said that Jio would be launched in the following 3 to 9 months. The report also stated that over 30 million subscribers are estimated to become a part of Jio by the end of this financial year, garnering revenue of over $1 billion for Jio.

Summary

Reliance LYF smart phone debuts on Amazon. Jio sim card trials are ongoing, and may release later this year.

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