Online retailer Flipkart is gearing up to launch its own smartphone, dubbed Billion Capture+, with dual-rear cameras. Flipkart's website already has a banner on its site for the upcoming launch on 15 November.
Based on the Android operating system, the phone will be priced at Rs10,999 for the 32GB model and at Rs12,999 for the 64GB model, Billion category head Hrishikesh Thite said.
The phone has been designed, engineered, manufactured and tested in India, Thite added.
The phone's appeal with customers will be closely tracked, as other home-grown handset makers like Micromax have lost out to Chinese competitors.
Flipkart, which is the sales leader in the crucial smartphone category, has key partnerships with phone brands such as Xiaomi, Samsung, Vivo and Oppo, all of whom have competing products with Billion Capture+. Smartphone sales account for more than 50 per cent of all ecommerce in India.
The Billion Capture+ is part of Flipkart's private label Billion and this is a 'Made for India' smartphone, says the company. It will have a 5.5-inch full HD display with 401 PPI and 2.5D Dragontrail glass on top for extra protection. The phone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor with 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB storage on board. This is expandable up to 128 GB via a microSD card.
On the camera front, Billion Capture+ has a 13MP + 13MP set up at the back with the company claiming this has a 'Super Night mode', 'Bokeh effect' as well. Flipkart is using RGB and monochrome sensors for the 'Bokeh' effect on the smartphone. The front camera is 8MP.
Flipkart's Billion Capture+ has a 3,500mAh battery with the company claiming ''two days of uninterrupted battery life.'' This has a USB Type C charger and Quick Charge with Flipkart promising seven hours of battery life with just 15 minutes of charging.
Flipkart will offer ''No Cost EMI,'' discounts on leading debit / credit cards for the sale of its Billion Capture+ phone.
''The Billion brand's products have always been backed by meticulous data-driven research and insight into Indian customers' needs. The features in the Capture+ too have been derived from deep data-mining of millions of Flipkart customers' reviews. Few true dual camera phones offer this combination of flagship features. We're sure this customer-centricity will delight Indian smartphone buyers,'' said Sachin Bansal, co-founder and executive chairman of Flipkart in a press statement.
On the design front, Flipkart says the Billion Capture+ has a premium metal body. For servicing, the phone will be supported by the pan India service network of F1 Info Solutions, which is now owned by Flipkart. The company is also claiming it will have 130 service centres for its phones in over 125 cities in the country.
The Billion Capture+ phone will come with unlimited cloud storage as well and run stock Android Nougat. The company is also promising a guaranteed upgrade to Android Oreo for the phone.
This is not the first time Flipkart has tried to launch a hardware device. The Indian ecommerce giant had launched its Digiflip Pro series of tablets in 2014, powered by an Intel Atom processor and priced from Rs5,999 to Rs15,999. The tablet venture wasn't a big success and the tablet market itself declined, but this hasn't deterred Flipkart from a second venture into consumer hardware.
The initiative is also part of Flipkart's efforts to increase sales of private label products, which offer higher margins to online retailers than those sold by third-party brands.