Things aren’t going well for the Google Android One initiative. The project designed to tap into emerging markets where smartphone adoption is still low seems to be going nowhere.
It has not received a positive response due to a number of reasons.
And that is because both customers and retails seem like they are not interested in Google’s Android One products. India is the first country where the technology giant is running this pilot program, and some two months into it, the results are rather discouraging.
Very discouraging, in fact.
Funny thing is that, the fault is on Google’s part, as the company decided against selling these Android One phones through physical, retail outlets.
As reported here, three native handset makers decided to launch Android One smartphones in the country, namely Karbonn, Micromax and Spice. Sales started in September, but only three online retailers got in on the action — Amazon, Flipkart and Snapdeal.
Result being, no major physical retailers stocked these Android One smartphones, and things are not likely to change unless Google shakes up its policy.
Another aspect is that the profit margin that Google is offering for these devices is far lower than the industry average. Only around 3-4%, instead of the 9-10% that is the norm.
The funny thing is that industry sources are claiming that the technology giant will need to bring the prices of these Android sets even lower in order for these to sell well in India. Something in or around the $30 to $50 mark.
Needless to say, the Android One initiative is in disarray right now.