Airtel got very unprotective from Jio Feature Phone as Reliance Jio lately launched there smartphone at just Rs.1500. Thus Airtel took initiative in India for "Mera Pehle 4G Smartphone". Airtel is currently in partner with Karbonn Mobile. And the upcoming smartphone from Karbonn, Karbonn A40 Indian is now hyped to be available at just Rs. 1399. With its announcement using the same terminology, Airtel is clearly targeting the Reliance JioPhone that was marketed to have an effective price of zero.
Airtel "My First 4G Smartphone" Initiative:
Airtel says its 'Mera Pehla 4G Smartphone' initiative, also called 'My First Smartphone', is aimed at "enabling every Indian to buy a 4G smartphone and get on to the digital superhighway."
Airtel added that the initiative will bring "highly affordable bundled 4G smartphone options to the market and fulfill the digital aspirations of millions of Indians." Smartphones under the initiative will be available from offline stores, with after sales being handled by the device manufacturers themselves.
Karbonn A40 Indian:
The telecom operator detailed just how the Karbonn A40 Indian, which was launched back in July and is said to currently have a market price of Rs. 3,499, will be available at an 'effective price' of Rs. 1,399.
Customers will need to make a down payment of Rs. 2,899 for smartphone, and then make a minimum amount of recharges over the course of three years to receive cashbacks totaling Rs. 1,500. Subtracting the cashback from the down payment for the phone gives the smartphone an 'effective price' of the Rs. 1,399. The 'cash refunds' will be made in the form of payments to the user's Airtel Payments Bank account.
Minimum Recharges on your 4G Smartphone:
The obvious catch here is of course what the minimum recharges are to avail the above mentioned cashbacks. Users will need to make recharges worth at least Rs. 3,000 in the first 18 months to avail a Rs. 500 cashback, and then make recharges worth at least the same amount over the next 18 months to avail a Rs. 1,000 cashback. Users will have to make recharges every month to be eligible for the cashbacks.
While Airtel mentions users can make recharges of any denomination, the company is offering a bundled plan of Rs. 169 per month to ostensibly simply the eligibility. Rs. 169 over 36 months totals to Rs. 6,084. The Rs. 169 recharge has a 28-day validity, and offers unlimited calling (subject to a fair usage policy) and 0.5GB of high-speed data a day. For handsets other than the Karbonn A40 Indian, the plan will have a 14-day validity.