Videocon Cube 3, a budget smartphone, has been launched by the company. Akshay Dhoot, Head – Technology and Innovation, Videocon says Cube 3 is company’s flagship device and the face of their premium smartphones range. Cube 3 is the first smartphone by Videocon to come with the ‘SOS-Be Safe’ app, something that will be incorporated in all of company’s future smartphones. Dhoot, in a coversation with the IndianExpress.com talked about Cube 3, the ‘SOS-Be Safe’ app and company’s plans for the Indian smartphone market in the coming months.
Explaining how ‘SOS-Be Safe’ app is different from similar one present in the market, Dhoot said, “The highlight of the app is that it is customised for every kind of smartphone, whatever be the processor or RAM. There are multiple unique features like Walk With Me and Reach On Time. Plus, the app is ad-free.” Walk With Me sends location of users to their emergency contacts at regular intervals set by users. Reach On Time sets an alert to emergency contacts in case users don’t reach a particular location at the set time. For users to send alert themselves, they need to press the power button, which also acts as SOS button manually for a set number of times.
“The ‘SOS-Be Safe’ app will be able to send Google Maps links to your emergency contacts, given your GPS is switched on at all times. In case your GPS is off, the app will still send out a message but without the location. Your emergency contact may call you back etc,” he added. On asked if it feasible to keep GPS switched on at all times as it consumes a lot of battery, he said the battery on Cube3 lasted easily for a day even with the GPS switched on constantly.
“The ‘SOS-Be Safe’ app has been optimised to work on various networks, including 2G, 3G etc. The app also shows nearby hospital and police stations,” said Dhoot. However, he admitted, the app does not incorporate emergency numbers such as 100 for police or 101 for ambulance. Users will need to dial these manually in emergency situations, which isn’t quite practical.
But, according to Dhoot the company plans to roll out one update every month, which will make the app even better in the coming months. The ‘SOS-Be Safe’ is currently available on Android only and will rollout for iOS users soon.
Talking about Cube 3, Dhoot says they’re looking to sell somewhere around 1,50,000-2,50,000 units of the smartphone in the month of September-October, since it is the festive season. Videocon Cube 3 supports Reliance Jio 4G SIM card, which gives users an access to free, unlimited data and voice calls for 90 days. The Reliance Jio Offer is live till December 31, 2016. “Videocon plans to launch a smartphone that will come bundled with a Reliance Jio SIM card as early as next month,” said Vineet Mahajan, Product Business Head, Videocon.
Mahajan said the company isn’t looking to set more manufacturing plants in India. “Our existing facilities have a capacity to produce around 1.7 million handsets per month, out of which we make somewhere close to 1.2 million – 1.3 million for our own brand. About 65 per cent of our production comprises of smartphones. As of now, we don’t have any plans to set up more manufacturing units In India. Right now, we have 70 models of phones, out of which 38 are smartphones,” he added.
Videocon is looking to capture about 6 per cent of market share in the smartphones segment in India by the end of this fiscal year. “We currently have 1.5 – 2.5 per cent market share in the mobile phones segment. We’re looking at roughly 6 per cent market share by the end of this fiscal year. This includes just the smartphones,” he said.
Mahajan reveals that Videocon is working with roughly 9 SKUs and plans to launch around smartphone 30 models by the end of this year. “We’re working at smartphones that will cost Rs 16,000 – Rs 30,000 as well.”