India relies on Google to develop new smartphones in $25 billion 5G push

NEW DELHI – India’s telecoms leader Reliance on Monday launched a budget 5G smartphone in partnership with Alphabet Inc’s Google, drawing up a $25 billion plan to roll out next-generation wireless services within two months said he did.

Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani said at the company’s annual shareholder meeting that Jio’s 5G network will be the world’s largest, launching in major cities such as New Delhi and Mumbai and expanding across India by December next year. rice field.

Ambani, one of India’s richest men, said only that the phone he co-developed with Google would be “super affordable”. The cheapest of his 5G mobile phones currently retails at around $150 in India. About 700 million people in India do not have a smartphone.

Neil Shah, vice president of research at Counterpoint, said:

India’s 5G data speeds are expected to be around 10 times faster than 4G, and the network is seen as essential for emerging technologies such as self-driving cars and artificial intelligence.

Reliance’s 5G plans challenge rivals Bharti Airtel and Vodafone-Idea in the world’s second largest mobile market. Reliance also fell 0.78% on weak Mumbai markets, while shares of Airtel and Vodafone fell 1.3% and 3.3% respectively.

Jio, India’s largest mobile carrier with more than 420 million customers, won $11 billion worth of airwaves in a $19 billion 5G spectrum auction earlier this month.

An aggressive 5G strategy sparked a price war in 2016 with the launch of cheap 4G data plans and free voice services, before again partnering with Google to launch a 4G smartphone priced at just $81. Based on Jio’s strategy to disrupt the telecom market.

Inheritance, consumer play

With a market value of $220 billion, Ambani’s business empire spans telecommunications, retail, oil and gas, and new energy.

He said he was one of those who mentored children on a daily basis as they began to take the reins at the company.Akash and Isha have taken leadership roles at Jio Digital and Retail, respectively. Anant has joined the new energy business.

Akash, 30, was also named chairman of Reliance’s telecom division in June.

Ambani Sr. added that he will provide an update next year on IPO plans for Reliance’s digital and retail division, which raised around $22 billion from global investors including KKR & Co Inc and Silver Lake in 2020.

Reliance also announced the long-awaited integration of its grocery shopping app JioMart with investor partner Meta Platform Inc’s WhatsApp. This allows users to shop through messaging apps.

Separately, Isha Ambani said Reliance will launch a new consumer goods company this year, but did not provide details.

Reuters said in May that Reliance plans to acquire dozens of food and non-food brands to build a $6.5 billion business and challenge foreign giants like Unilever. Reported.

Munsif Vengatil