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Reliance Jio acquired 50 million users since 2017, fastest in introducing 4G service

PW Bureau 

Telecoms operator has also been the fastest in introducing the 4G network platform to millions of its 2G feature phone users, says research firm

New Delhi: Reliance Jio has sold around 50 million Jio phone units since late 2017. The telecom operator has also been the fastest in introducing the 4G network platform to millions of its 2G feature phone users, Counterpoint Research said in its latest report.

“The company’s Jio phone is the world’s leading VoLTE-supported KaiOS-based smart feature phone. It was launched at a price of US$ 20 and is the current exemplar of a smart feature phone value proposition and execution globally,” the research firm said.

“Out of more than 100 million subscribers that Reliance Jio added since the Jio Phone launch in late 2017, the KaiOS powered 4G smart feature phone contributes close to half of those net additions.”

370 million smartphones to be sold in 3 years

As per the research firm’s report, close to 370 million smartphones are likely to be sold around the world in the next three years, introducing an entirely untapped customer base to high-speed internet, services and apps.

Revenue opportunity in range of US$ 28 million

Counterpoint Research director Neil Shah said: “The revenue opportunity from increasing sales of smart feature phones is expected to be in the region of US$ 28 billion over the next three years. This will be enabled by a potential of more than 300 million smart feature phone users globally by the end of 2021.”

“Software and services alone will contribute to 71 percent of this near- to mid-term revenue opportunity, or around US$ 20 billion. This optimism stems from the sale of 4G feature phones in markets like India.”

Counterpoint’s associate director Tarun Pathak said: “Global smart feature phone demand grew 252 percent year-on-year in 2018, albeit from a low base, contributing roughly 16 percent of the total feature phone volumes.”

“While India is the biggest contributor to this demand, major markets that have driven smart feature phone sales include the US, the UK, South East Asia and Africa. We estimate smart feature phones to cross more than half of global feature phone volumes by 2021.”