After announcing the Android One line of devices at Google I/O, Sundar Pichai, the SVP of Google landed in India today to formally announce the launch of the devices. Google is teaming up with Micromax, Spice Mobiles and Karbonn for the first set of smartphones with a keen eye for more partnerships in the future. The Android One line of devices are basically Nexus phones but at a much lower price point, compromising a little on hardware but aiming to deliver top notch, Vanilla Android experience to the users.
According to Pichai, Google is addressing three key issues with Android One- Software, Connectivity and Hardware. The phone themselves start at just over Rs 6,000 yet bring top notch hardware at the price point. The devices will all run the latest Android version free from any bloatware or custom skin, with guaranteed immediate updates from Google. All three phones have the regular connectivity options such as Wifi, Bluetooth, GPS and 3G.
Sundar wrote on the official Android blog:
By working closely with phone and silicon chip makers to share reference designs and select components, we’re making it easier for our partners to build phones that are not just great to use, but also affordable. They have lots of processing power, so you can get information quickly. They have high-quality front- and rear-facing cameras. And for all those pictures, along with your apps and videos, Android One phones will have expandable storage. We also added features that people in India will find particularly useful, like dual SIM cards, a replaceable battery and built-in FM radio.
Not surprisingly, these devices will be some of the first to receive the Android L update along with the Nexus range of devices. Some of the future list of partners in the Android One programme include, Asus, HTC, Panasonic and Qualcomm. The presence of these will definitely fill the average consumers with a lot of optimism towards the programme itself.
The first set of Android One Devices
The three devices that have been launched today include one each from Karbonn, Spice and Micromax. These three devices will available from three different E-Com portals in India. For now, they will all be online exclusive. The Spice Dream One will be available exclusively from Flipkart starting today. The device will set you back by Rs 6,299 and features a 4.5 inch display with FWVGA resolution. At the heart of it, you have 1.3 GHz Quad Core MediaTek SoC with 1 GB of RAM. The phone does support microSD expansion, largely due to meagre 4 GB internal storage. The camera on board is 5 MP and the device runs Android KitKat 4.4.4 out of the box. It has 1700 mAh battery.
The Karbonn Sparkle V has exactly the same specifications as the Spice smartphone though it would set you back by Rs 100 extra, costing Rs 6,399 and would be available from Snapdeal in four color choices including, blue, red, grey and white. The Canvas A1 of Micromax would be available from Amazon directly and again has the same specifications that we have seen on the Spice and Karbonn devices. All the devices as expected have Dual SIM Support and 35 GB Cloud storage space in Google Drive.
Are you impressed by the Android One devices? Which one will you be picking up? Do let us know in the section below.