Update: Ringing Bells says the Cash on Delivery option is for those who booked the phone, but were unable to make payment via the online portal
Ringing Bells says it is now accepting cash on delivery payments from those who have placed an order for the Freedom 251 smartphones. The company says that the offer will be available to the first 25 lakh customers who had registered for the smartphone.
“In furthering our service to you, we, at Ringing Bells, have decided to offer “Cash on Delivery” terms vs the previous Offer of via “Payment Gateway” !! By this, you, our esteemed Customer, will be required to make payment only when the phone is delivered to you. We are in the process of compiling the emails and issuing these to first 25 Lacs registrations very soon. We express our sincere gratitude for your kind support and look forward to your continued patronage.
Assuring you of our best intentions
Freedom 251 Team ”
Best intentions of Ringing Bells aside, there remains a question on what happens to the payment that has already been made. Sure cash on delivery option sounds nice, and might assuage fears of those who have booked the phones, but Ringing Bells’ announcement does not mention anything about a refund for who’ve already paid. We’ve already reached out to PayUBiz for a clarification, and will update should they have a response.
The payments themselves have been a curious matter with Ringing Bells. Ringing Bells stopped taking bookings for Freedom 251 bookings, and claims to have gotten orders worth Rs 1.75 crores via the website freedom251.com. It also claimed that it won’t actually be taking the payment from the payment gateway facilitator PayUBiz, until it gave proof of delivery.
However PayUBiz has said that it was they in fact who were holding on to the payments, due to surge of queries around Ringing Bells.
The payment gateway had said, “As a responsible payment solution company, we have ensured that the buyer’s money remains safe with us and gets released to the merchant once the product is dispatched. In case the merchant is not able to fulfil the huge demand they have received, we will work with merchant to return the money to buyers.”
We’ll have to wait and watch how this saga unfolds further and whether people end up getting their hands on Freedom 251, the world’s cheapest smartphone in the world. Meanwhile the company is already under the scanner of the Excise and Income-Tax Department.
Let us know in the comments if Ringing Bells has sent you an email about cash on delivery.