Reliance Jio is reportedly working with Google to develop an affordable smartphone that will work exclusively on the Mukesh Ambani-led telco's 4G network, Business Line reported.
The affordable smartphone is likely to be launched before the end of this year. The report said that Google branding will help Reliance Jio reach a larger market, besides ensuring deep integration of the latter's applications into Android platform.
In addition to the smartphone, Google and Reliance Jio both are working together on developing software for the telco smart TV services, which will be launched later this year.
Google branding will help boost Reliance Jio's plans to sell cheaper 4G handsets and reach a larger market. It will also ensure that Jio apps are more tightly integrated into the Android platform, improving the performance significantly.
Reliance industries through its retail arm, Reliance Retail, is currently working with a number of Chinese ODMs to procure 4G VoLTE smartphones and pocket routers, besides Foxconn. It is sourcing these products from Chinese ODMs like ZTE, CK Telecom, Wingtech, and Tinno Mobile, ET earlier reported.
Reliance Industries recently asked its Chinese and Taiwanese original device manufacturers (ODMs) partners to make its Lyf branded 4G smartphones, smart set-top boxes, home automation and automobile telematics devices among others in India.
ET had also reported that Reliance Jio is working with Lava International and Chinese original equipment makers to manufacture VoLTE feature phones. Jio is also said to be subsidising part of the selling price to make the 4G feature phones available at about Rs 1,000 (about $15).
These devices are likely to come bundled with unlimited voice and video calling, besides digital content, people familiar with the plans earlier told ET.