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August 10, 2015

Google to give a fresh start to Android One

Smartphones could go for as little as $31.

By CBR Staff Writer

Google is planning to take another shot at its Android One initiative with a new plan which will include the introduction of $50 smartphones in emerging markets with special focus on India.

Android One was launched with a goal to standardise low-cost smartphones for emerging markets, which helped manufacturers make cheap, good quality smartphones.

However, the OS could not live up to hype and expectations due to supply constraints seen in China.

The company is planning to reveal a new initiative in the "the next few weeks", and it is expected to be targeted at first-time smartphone users in emerging markets where the cost of the device could dip as low as ($31-$47).

It is also planning to market high-quality yet affordable devices later that will cost around $100.

Despite India being one of the fast-expanding internet population, which is expected to surpass 500 million by 2017, the market for the company’s digital advertising remains small.

Most of the Google products including YouTube and maps requires high-speed internet to work properly yet the country is marketed by slow bandwidth.

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However, Google is reportedly planning a "very large-scale" investment programme to bring small businesses online, and introduce content suitable for Indian audience where English is not the first language.

The Financial Times cited Google Southeast Asia managing director Rajan Anandan as saying: "Don’t get me wrong, the revenue is interesting but?.?.?.?we’re here really because 10 years from now a billion Indians will be online and when we have a billion Indians online we think that’s going to make a huge difference to the global internet economy."

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