Google has officially revealed the first smartphones that run on its Android One platform, which was designed to help make cheaper phones more popular in developing markets.
The project kicks off in India, where Karbonn, Micromax, and Spice are going to start selling three new smartphones with 4.5in screens, 1GB of RAM, 5-megapixel cameras, 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek processors, dual-SIM slots, and microSD expandable storage. The first phones will go on sale later today for 6399 rupees (about £65), and will come with support for a number of languages, including Hindi.
After India, the phones will make their way to Indonesia, the Philippines, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Nepal before the end of 2014, with more countries to follow in 2015. Google also added that HTC, Asus, Alcatel OneTouch, Panasonic, Acer, and Lenovo are planning to joining the program, including the chip maker Qualcomm.
Although these are not the first affordable Android phones to come to the smartphone market, they should be the first to get the software updates directly form Google, which should ensure a much better user experience. A couple of years back, in some parts of the world, users with low-powered phones couldn’t update their Android versions, which also meant no access to new apps and service. These phones will also be in the first wave of devices to receive the Android L update.