JioPhone Next, the all-new ultra-affordable smartphone from Reliance, has been delayed. Earlier announced it to be available starting September 10 on the eve of Ganesh Chaturthi, Reliance, in a statement, confirmed the delay and added that the JioPhone Next rollout would commence around Diwali festive season. This means that the JioPhone Next can be expected to go on sale around early November.
In a late Thursday evening announcement, Jio and partner Google said both companies had begun testing JioPhone Next with a limited set of users for further refinement and were working to make it available more widely for the festive season.
Jio in its release did not specify the exact reason behind the delay of the JioPhone Next but it did mention the global shortage of semiconductors. “This additional time will also help mitigate the current industry-wide, global semiconductor shortages,” Jio said in the release. The global chip shortage which first hit the car industry and then the consumer electronics, is now affecting smartphones as well.
“The companies remain committed to their vision of opening up new possibilities for millions of Indians, especially those who will experience the internet for the very first time,” Reliance said in a statement.
“The entry-level price tier is the most impacted. The prices of certain components have increased by almost 20 per cent. It’s not just the price, the lead time to procure these components has increased significantly from eight weeks earlier to 16-20 weeks for some of them. For Jio it will be about managing the supplies,” said Tarun Pathak of Counterpoint Research.
JioPhone Next Specs (Rumoured)
At the RIL AGM 2021, billionaire Mukesh Ambani did not reveal much about the ultra-affordable smartphone. Even the pricing details of the JioPhone Next are currently under the wraps. Word is that Reliance Jio will make its smartphone available for around 3,499. The pricing details are not official. We, therefore, advise our readers to take the leaked pricing with a pinch of salt.
Other detailed specs of the phone have leaked as well. It will have a 5.5-inch HD display with thick bezels around the screen. The phone will come in 2GB/ 3GB RAM options with 16GB/ 32GB storage options. Under the hood, the device will draw power from a Qualcomm Snapdragon 215 SoC. It will have a 13MP rear camera and an 8MP front camera. The phone will pack a 2,500 mAh battery. It will run Android 11 (Go Edition) out of the box.
The phone is confirmed to come with features like Google assistant, automatic read-aloud of screen text, language translation, smart camera with augmented reality filters. It will also offer language and translation features. Google, at the event, also said that the Read Aloud and Translate Now features are integrated into the OS, allowing these features to work with any text on the device screen, including web pages, apps, messages, and photos.