China-based LeTV is all set to enter India today by announcing its first two phones – the mid-range Le 1s and the high-end Max.
Many fans are hoping that LeTV, which has overtaken Xiaomi in the Chinese market of late, will step into the Xiaomi’s shoes in India as the seller of the affordable quality hardware in the country and give some competition to Lenovo and Yu.
As such, the expectation is for the Le 1s to be priced in the Rs 14,000 range.
UPDATE: The company said it will price the phone at Rs 10,999 in India, despite it costing Rs 16,000 to manufacture it.
The 1s is about 40% more powerful compared to the current king of the mid range, the Lenovo K4 Note. It comes with Helio X10 processor from MediaTek — the premium chipset of 2015 — and 3 GB RAM.
The phone has almost no major missing features except support for external memory cards. However, the company has tried to get over that by bundling 32 GB of internal memory compared to the standard 16 GB found in mid-range devices.
Like the K4, cameras are 13 MP and 5 MP in resolution. Battery capacity is 3 Ampere Hour.
The most crucial question in everybody’s mind is whether the company will resort to subsidizing the hardware cost of the phone by trying to make money through content services in India.
In China, the phone sells for around Rs 11,500 despite actually costing Rs 13,500 or so for the company to manufacture.
The actual cost of the phone in India — including import duty, countervailing (excise) duty and sales tax — works out to be over Rs 17,000.
However, pricing the phone at 17,000 plus will severely restrict its sales in the country, given that the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 — which has superior specifications — is scheduled to launch in India by the end of this month or early in February.
The company will also launch the 6.33-inch Max for an estimated price of around Rs 30,000 for the 64 GB version.
Click on the ‘Play’ button to watch the live telecast of the launch taking place in Gurgaon. The event will start at 2 pm today.