HMD Global and Bharti Airtel on Monday announced a strategic partnership that aims to offer affordable 4G smartphone under the latter’s Mera Pehla Smartphone scheme. As per Airtel’s initiative, HMD Global smartphones – Nokia 3 and Nokia 2 are available at a flat Rs 2000 cashback.
Originally priced at Rs 9,499 and Rs 6,999 respectively, the Nokia 3 and the Nokia 2 will be available for Rs 7,499 and Rs 4,999 along with a bundled Airtel pack. The Indian telecom giant will provide Rs 169 recharge offer with every purchase of Nokia 3 and Nokia 2 which enables 1GB of data usage and unlimited local and STD calls.
Ajai Puri, Chief Operating Officer (India & South Asia), Bharti Airtel said, “We are delighted to partner with Nokia to bring exciting and affordable options to customers planning to upgrade to a 4G smartphone. Nokia devices have a solid brand resonance amongst customers and we believe that the partnership offers a great proposition to customers looking for quality devices at great prices.”
No free lunches…
As tempting as Airtel’s offer look, it’s doesn’t come without conditions. Remember, there are no free lunches.
Customers interested in Airtel’s Mera Pehla Smartphone initiative will only get the cashback of Rs 2,000 in two installments ranging 36 months. That’s not all. Users under this scheme will have to recharge their Airtel number worth Rs 3,500 in the first 18 months after which they will receive the first cashback of Rs 500. The same process, when continued for the next 18 months will then provide the second cashback worth Rs 1,500 to users.
Sounds strange? Well, it is.
As such, the scheme would bind a user with Airtel and either of the two Nokia smartphones for as long as three years. Which is why this scheme by Airtel is also a disappointment.
Not only does the cashback take a long three years to be credited into a user’s account, the shelf-life of the particular phone also gets depleted which may render the two smartphones unusable after those long 36 months. Even if users manage to use the phone for a year or two, there’s no denying that they may outgrow the Nokia 3 or Nokia 2.
Here, an upgrade plan would have been logical as it would have allowed the user to change their smartphone having stayed under the plan.
Nokia 3 features a 5-inch display, is powered by a MediaTek processor, 2GB of RAM and an internal storage of 16GB. There’s a 2,630 mAh battery onboard that provides power to the phone. Nokia 2 also has a 5-inch display and is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor with 1GB of RAM and an 8Gb onboard storage. It draws power from a 4,100 mAh battery.