Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd (RJIL) has started deliveries of the highly-anticipated JioPhones to customers who have pre-ordered it. Reports said customers from rural areas will be the first to get the 'essentially free' device, followed by urban buyers.
''The chairman (Mukesh Ambani) had said that the JioPhone will bridge digital divide between rural and urban India. Therefore, delivery of JioPhone will start this Sunday in rural areas and small towns,'' a Reliance channel partner told a media agency.
The delivery of the first lot of 6 million JioPhones will be completed in 10-15 days, reports citing a Reliance Jio channel partner said.
According to CyberMedia Research (CMR), the second quarter of 2017 saw 61.8 million mobiles shipped of which 54 per cent were feature phones. The rollout of six million of the feature phones is 10 per cent of India's total mobile market in a quarter.
JioPhone pre-bookings started on 24 August but was closed after heavy demand and there is no news thus far on when the bookings will reopen.
Interested buyers got the opportunity to book their JioPhones against a refundable deposit of Rs500, with the balance Rs1,000 to be paid on delivery. The amount would be refunded in full on return of the phone after three years.
Ambani had announced that voice calling for customers of JioPhone would be free and they would get unlimited data for a month against payment of Rs153. JioPhones have pre-loaded Jio apps for messaging and entertainment. The Jio TV app allows users to view live TV on the phone.
Jio tweeted on its official Twitter handle, @LYF_In that the handset deliveries will be done in a phased manner, "to avoid inconvenience" and all customers who pre-booked JioPhone should expect their units by Diwali this year. Customers will be notified via SMS alerts regarding the status of their JioPhone delivery date.