Google Adds Three New Countries To Its Android One Program
Google has begun expansion of its Android One program by adding three new countries. The program kicked off in India in September, and now Google looks to take this program to Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
Expanding Android One will take Google to another 200 million potential users, in addition to India’s more than one billion people.
Android One is Google’s initiative to offer low cost sub-$100 smartphones in emerging markets. Analysts believe it will define the future of mobility.
Google partnered up with companies in India such as Micromax, Spice, and Karbon to deliver mobile devices under Android One program. These mobile devices would be offering stock Android that lacks UI customization but these will offer latest Android for at least two years.
Through such partnerships, Google eliminated the possibility of carriers gambling over OS updates. Google also partnered up with Airtel and other Indian carriers in this program to offer latest software updates. Otherwise, mobile devices running over old hardware would have stuck on older software.
The mobile devices developed under Android One have decent specs. One of the phones run a 1.3Ghz quad-core, 1GB RAM, and 4GB of storage with additional microSD slot as well.
With the expansion of Android One to three new countries, Bangladeshi smartphone maker Symphony will launch its first Android smartphone, the Symphony Road A50. It will cost the same as other phones offered in this program and will have latest software updates.
This move will also help existing Indian partners like Karbon, Spice, and Micromax as they will be able to sell their devices in three new countries.
Other countries that are in list of Android One are Indonesia and Philippines. Google has said that it plans to expand the program to further emerging markets but it has not revealed much details about when or where it will be offering Android One.
The program has seen success in India so far. Android One phone The Sparkle V developed by a partner Karbon began shipping to UK last month. But it is not supported by Google and a reseller arranged the shipment without Google’s support.
Source: Google / Asia Pacific Blog