Vodaphone is a huge global mobile ISP. They are first or second ranked in market share in revenue or units sold. They are going to have a house-brand smartphone running Android/Linux. For 90Euros it will sell well. Vodaphone has 130 million subscribers in India alone and 341 million globally.
House brands do sell. Vodaphone will promote the devices. That means a huge increase in usage for Android/Linux over the next couple of years IMHO. Vodaphone gets a new revenue stream with lower costs. Customers get better smart phones at lower costs. Everyone wins except the monpolists who feel they have somehow a right/duty/obligation to take 100% share.
Here’s the press release:
Vodafone Announces the Vodafone Smart â€“ A Smartphone for Everyone
16 May 2011
Vodafone today announces the launch of the Vodafone Smart, the latest handset in its own-brand range and the first in its category: a fully-featured smartphone with popular appeal for the next wave of data users.
The Vodafone Smart delivers a compelling smartphone experience, empowering customers to enter the world of the mobile internet, bringing together apps, navigation, social-networking and multimedia, all at a great price, in a great package.
Patrick Chomet, Vodafone Group Terminals Director said, â€œMore and more Vodafone customers are enjoying the benefits of smartphones which currently account for over 40% of the phones we sell in Europe. Continuing to push the boundaries through our own-brand range, the Vodafone Smart is a new smartphone concept. It takes the higher end mobile internet experience and packages it for the mass market, its range of covers and accessories making it a fun fashion statement. Available on pay as you go plans, and on the fast, reliable Vodafone networks, the Vodafone Smart is a great step-up into the world of mobile data.â€
The Vodafone Smart will be rolled out in a range of colours â€“ from cool monochromes, through bold brights, to bespoke graphic designs. Whatâ€™s more, customers will be able to personalise their phone, creating their own one-off covers on the web. With spring/summer and autumn/winter cover ranges planned, customers can build up a cover collection to suit their style and spirit.
The Android 2.2 software will give customers access to the full Android experience, including the Android Marketâ„¢, Gmailâ„¢, Google Mapsâ„¢ and Google Talkâ„¢ instant messaging. In addition, the phone has a zoom camera and a capacitive touchscreen as well as 3G, WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.
The Vodafone design team have created the user experience with first-time smartphone users in mind and, as such, the homescreen comes pre-loaded with direct links to key content and features including Facebookâ„¢, Twitterâ„¢, email, Vodafoneâ€™s â€˜Prepay Managerâ€™ for quick top-ups, Vodafone Music and finally the â€˜Updatesâ€™ widget, which gives customers easy access to a shortlist of leading Android Market apps and other services selected by local Vodafone editors.
The Vodafone Smart will be available across the Vodafone footprint by early summer. Germany, Italy and the UK will be among the first to sell the phone which will retail for around â‚¬90.
Notes to Editors
Android, Android Market, Gmail, Google Talk and Google Maps are all trademarks of Google, Inc; Facebook is a trademark of Facebook, Inc, and Twitter is a trademark of Twitter, Inc.
For more information on the Vodafone Smart visit http://www.vodafone.com/smart For a video review, visit http://youtu.be/il9OztJi6xs?hd=1
Vodafone is one of the world’s largest mobile communications companies by revenue with approximately 359 million customers in its controlled and jointly controlled markets as at 31 December 2010. Vodafone currently has equity interests in over 30 countries across five continents and more than 40 partner networks worldwide.
For further information:
Tel: +44 (0) 1635 664444
Here’s the video: