Way ahead of commercially launching Jio 4G Service Reliance Jio Infocomm had introduced Lyf smartphones in India around June 2016. The reason behind launching Lyf smartphones was to boost the adoption of 4G devices in India.
Sources familiar with the development said to The Mobile Indian, “Lyf smartphones were not launched to make a profit or grab a slot in top 3 OEM’s ( original equipment manufacturer) in India. They were launched to add impetus to the adoption of 4G devices in India.”
Sources further said, “At the time when Jio launched Lyf phones decent 4G smartphones available in the market were priced exorbitantly high, and most the handset brands who were traditionally big in budget smartphone category were still contemplating launching 4G ready devices. Jio’s aim was to push the other players in the handset ecosystem to come up with more and more 4G smartphones that too with an affordable price tag.”
It seems if Jio’s strategy was to push other handset brands to come up with more and more 4G smartphones on which their services could be consumed it has paid off. If we recall most of the Indian handset players like Micromax, Lava and Karbonn were not ready with decent 4G smartphone portfolio in September 2016, when Jio commercially launched its 4G services. With the passage of time ( to be exact around 6 months) now there is not a single handset brand in India which doesn’t have a 4G device portfolio. So what was the Lyf’s strategy? Let’s try to decode it.
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Sell Lyf smartphones with 4 SIM cards even before the commercial launch of Jio 4G service. The aim was to introduce high-speed data service to consumers.
Make Lyf phones with 4G SIM cards available in large-format retail stores across the country. Use the reach of Reliance Digital and Reliance Digital Mini effectively to reach out more and more consumers.
Introduce referral system for procuring 4G SIMs so as to create curiously and in a way propel adoption of 4G services.
After commercially launching 4G services, Jio started offering 4G SIM cards with three months of free unlimited data and voice calls to get the consumers hooked onto 4G services. Once that happened, consumers wanted better user experience on their devices, which in turn pushed other handset players to come up with better smartphones than Lfy device.
Jio started partnering with handset brands to offer free data to consumers on a purchase of anew 4G device. In the meantime, Lyf smartphones soon became just another smartphone on the shelves of retailers and Jio gets more subscribers.