Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 31st Aug 2011 14:35 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless While US Android users are all full of glee that they're finally getting the Samsung Galaxy S II in the United States, a far more significant Android smartphone is being developed... In China. It's faster than any other smartphone, has a beautiful and fluid user interface, top-notch hardware quality, a dual-partition setup so you can keep using the phone while it updates... And will sell for a mere $310, no contract or whatever other nonsense. Hello Xiaomi Phone.
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All about profit margin
by CapEnt on Wed 31st Aug 2011 14:49 UTC
CapEnt
Member since:
2005-12-18

What make companies so happy about smartphones? High-end smartphones is a high margin market, unlike the feature phone market.

It was obvious that one day, one manufacturer would choose to operate with a smaller margin to grab market share.

Reply Score: 5

ROM?
by steogede2 on Wed 31st Aug 2011 15:10 UTC
steogede2
Member since:
2007-08-17

>> "4GB of ROM"

Flash or NVRAM surely?

Reply Score: 2

v ...
by Hiev on Wed 31st Aug 2011 15:16 UTC
RE: ...
by Laurence on Wed 31st Aug 2011 15:41 UTC in reply to "..."
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

The question is: Is one of thos phones that broke in two monts? because quality is also in the case.

I must admit I'm waiting for the catch as at the moment it all sounds too good to be true.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: ...
by zima on Wed 31st Aug 2011 15:59 UTC in reply to "RE: ..."
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Something already as decent as ZTE Blade ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZTE_Blade ) costs half as much as the discussed phone, also without contract of course. It is on the market for almost a year, no major issues reported. Throwing in a better SoC, battery, more current amounts of memory, and slightly larger screen - all that a year later - can't be that much more expensive.

Edited 2011-08-31 16:03 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: ...
by Radio on Wed 31st Aug 2011 16:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ..."
Radio Member since:
2009-06-20

AND the Blade is up-to-date thanks to CyanogenMod (officially supported phone).

Reply Score: 3

how far
by fran on Wed 31st Aug 2011 15:26 UTC
fran
Member since:
2010-08-06

And not so many years ago i paid $300 dollars for one with a monochrome screen and polyphonic ringtones.

Reply Score: 3

RE: how far
by ilovebeer on Wed 31st Aug 2011 15:44 UTC in reply to "how far"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

And not so many years ago i paid $300 dollars for one with a monochrome screen and polyphonic ringtones.

I remember paying $650+ for an analog cell phone that flipped open, had a 6inch extendable antenna, and a 10 digit display. Then a couple years later paying even more for the digital version and alphanumeric display.

Reply Score: 1

oh hi!
by jarkkot on Wed 31st Aug 2011 16:24 UTC
jarkkot
Member since:
2010-01-14

Heard that you like icons so we put lots of icons into it to many screens so you can move them around, with both hands!

but.. does it come with a phone?

Reply Score: 2

RE: oh hi!
by dnebdal on Thu 1st Sep 2011 01:12 UTC in reply to "oh hi!"
dnebdal Member since:
2008-08-27

Heard that you like icons so we put lots of icons into it to many screens so you can move them around, with both hands!

but.. does it come with a phone?


My current fancy large-screen, dual core, 3D-accelerated android phone actually has excellent call quality - they've even bothered to put in a second microphone on the back, and use it to filter out background noise when I talk. So yeah, there is still phone functionality in there, and (perhaps surprisingly) it's really quite good at it.

I have no idea how the phone in the article will fare, obviously - but it's possible to get both.

Reply Score: 2

$310?!?
by kristoph on Wed 31st Aug 2011 16:24 UTC
kristoph
Member since:
2006-01-01

$310 is not a viable price point for most consumers. Also, as most apps won't work without mounted storage there will be an incremental cost of $20 - $40 (for a 16gb or 32gb sd card).

So it's a $350 ( + tax ) smart phone.

In the US this will have absolutely 0 impact because, like most Android smart phones, it will be free with a contract. It Europe (where it will probably be EUR 350 when VAT and the 'european premium' is added) it might have a more tangible impact but even then it will simply canabalize slightly more expensive Android devices, it won't 'open the market' to consumers who would otherwise not buy a smart phone.

Reply Score: 2

RE: $310?!?
by JAlexoid on Wed 31st Aug 2011 20:22 UTC in reply to "$310?!?"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

IT will not be €350+VAT. It'll be $350+VAT => €+support premium(€20+€50)

Because @ €350 there is SE Neo - a very nice device...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: $310?!?
by cyrilleberger on Thu 1st Sep 2011 07:33 UTC in reply to "RE: $310?!?"
cyrilleberger Member since:
2006-02-01

Or the mini at around 220€...

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Radio
by Radio on Wed 31st Aug 2011 16:52 UTC
Radio
Member since:
2009-06-20

Huawei has done something far better already :
http://singularityhub.com/2011/08/16/80-android-phone-sells-like-ho...

It is not a phone as good as this Xiaomi, but it is good enough. Thanks to Google, it has stuff like speech recognition/transcription which is unvaluable in a country where many people don't know how to write (yes, even people rich enough to buy this phone may be illiterate. You'd be surprised to meet successful business(wo)men who can neither read nor count).

Maybe worth a news?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Radio
by arpan on Wed 31st Aug 2011 16:59 UTC in reply to "Comment by Radio"
arpan Member since:
2006-07-30

yes, even people rich enough to buy this phone may be illiterate. You'd be surprised to meet successful business(wo)men who can neither read nor count


They may not be able to read, but they can definitely count, really really well. Most of them will do complex calculations in their head in a second.

I've met business men in India who can tell you exactly where you are from, even down to the which town you are from, and the fact that you studied in the US for a year etc.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Radio
by zima on Wed 31st Aug 2011 17:08 UTC in reply to "Comment by Radio"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Paste that URL in the search box, at the top of this page.

Functional illiteracy isn't particularly rare also in the so called "developed" world, anyway. But don't make too much of such mostly online tools, they are a) probably most useful as small helpers when you do know how to read and write b) problematic in places with very costly data transfers (maybe it leaves the way for some tailored Chinese "forks" of Android, we'll see)

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Radio
by unclefester on Thu 1st Sep 2011 07:18 UTC in reply to "Comment by Radio"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

"Developing" countries hold most of the top 20 places in world literacy rankings.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_literacy_rate

A more likely reason is because it's a PITA to use many non-Latin alphabets on electronic devices.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Radio
by SnowBuddha on Thu 1st Sep 2011 18:39 UTC in reply to "Comment by Radio"
SnowBuddha Member since:
2009-04-17

I have one of these. It's a little slow, and there are a few apps from the market place that don't like the smaller screen, but for the price I got it at it offers outstanding performance. The build quality is surprising considering the price point. It's also been dropped onto pavement several times - once even skidding merrily across several parking spaces - and still works flawlessly.

Reply Score: 1

Motorola Triumph
by fretinator on Wed 31st Aug 2011 17:38 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

The Motorola Triumph, for Virgin Mobile, is only $299. It is Flash 10.1 capable, 4.1-inch, 800x480 screen, 1Ghz processor. It is a beautiful phone, and combined with the $35/month unlimited data (300 voice minutes) it is an unbeatable combination. Or you can get unlimited everything for $55/mos. The problem with many phones is the expensive plan you have to get with the phone. I've given up on contract phones - woo hoo!

Reply Score: 3

RE: Motorola Triumph
by tyrel on Wed 31st Aug 2011 20:19 UTC in reply to "Motorola Triumph"
tyrel Member since:
2009-04-03

Indeed. I know 4 people who have this phone (including myself), and all are in love with it (and the plan). In a couple instances the users switched from a contract plan, and paid their horrible Early Termination Fee, to switch -- because it'll pay for itself it just a few months with the savings you get on Virgin Mobile's unlimited data plans.

Reply Score: 1

Your concept of "cheap" is so...
by protomank on Wed 31st Aug 2011 18:10 UTC
protomank
Member since:
2006-08-03

... north american or european...

A cheap phone, for most countries, is around U$50-80, not > 300 :-P

Reply Score: 4

Color me unimpressed
by Machster on Wed 31st Aug 2011 18:44 UTC
Machster
Member since:
2007-05-15

$300 is cheap? This article must be joking.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Color me unimpressed
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 31st Aug 2011 18:51 UTC in reply to "Color me unimpressed"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

It's about half the price of slower phones from large brands like Apple and Samsung.

I'd say that's cheap.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Color me unimpressed
by Machster on Wed 31st Aug 2011 18:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Color me unimpressed"
Machster Member since:
2007-05-15

Hardly, Thom. I just bought a new unlocked Samsung Focus with AMOLED screen for $200.

Edited 2011-08-31 19:02 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Color me unimpressed
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 31st Aug 2011 19:09 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Color me unimpressed"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

The Samsung Focus is one year old and considerably less sophisticated than this thing. Only single core, 1Ghz, and only 256MB of RAM. This phone is in a considerably different ballpark - it's using components that have barely been released, let alone put in any phone.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Color me unimpressed
by Machster on Wed 31st Aug 2011 19:22 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Color me unimpressed"
Machster Member since:
2007-05-15

Yes, it is last years model (still selling at ATT for $400) and the specs are not equal, but it will do everything I need and want for $100 less this Chinese model. For budget conscious consumers who don't need the latest and greatest there are better deals out there.

If you want a less expensive version of the Galaxy S2 then by all means consider it. I am gonna use the extra $100 to buy the Sony VITA.

PS I see that the Chinese model does not have an AMOLED screen so even if they were the same price I would probably go for Focus anyway.

Edited 2011-08-31 19:30 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Color me unimpressed
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 31st Aug 2011 19:28 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Color me unimpressed"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

For budget conscious consumers who don't need the latest and greatest there are better deals out there.


That's not the point. The point of this article is that budget-oriented consumers no longer have to settle for last year's product - they can get the latest and greatest today.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Color me unimpressed
by Beta on Thu 1st Sep 2011 09:55 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Color me unimpressed"
Beta Member since:
2005-07-06

The point of this article is that budget-oriented consumers no longer have to settle for last year's product - they can get the latest and greatest today.

It’s certainly getting that way, my mother just got a Samsung Galaxy Ace on a 2 year contract (we may not approve of such lengths…) but she doesnt upgrade often and wanted a cheap tarrif. The phone was free and the monthly cost is £10 for a decent amount of calls and data. So £240 for phone + 2 years of use. Seems reasonable to me.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Color me unimpressed
by kristoph on Thu 1st Sep 2011 15:36 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Color me unimpressed"
kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

The average 'budget oriented consumer' would have no idea that this device is in any way different then any of the other 100's of models out there.

Given that (a) it's not from a known brand, (b) the screen is not as high quality as competing models and (c) it's more expensive I'd say it's pretty safe to assume it's not going have a tangible impact on the market.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Color me unimpressed
by Soulbender on Thu 1st Sep 2011 19:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Color me unimpressed"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I'd say that's cheap.


Only in the sense that a Porsche is cheap compared to a Rolls-Royce. Both are still expensive for most people.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Color me unimpressed
by Piranha on Wed 31st Aug 2011 19:00 UTC in reply to "Color me unimpressed"
Piranha Member since:
2008-06-24

I don't call a phone "Free".. or $200 .. when I have to sign my life away into a 3 year contract up here in Canada. I refuse to sign contracts, period. If I have no other choice, then the most I go is 1 year.

If I can get this phone for $300 brand new (200-250 used), that's perfect.

I'm hoping its bootloader allows for unsigned images (ie Cyanogenmod). Dual booting multiple environments could be really useful.

Reply Score: 2

AnythingButVista
Member since:
2008-08-27

Will it have access to the Android Market, YouTube, Google Maps, GMail... you know, the apps that make an Andrpod-powered smartphone a "true" Android phone? Google doesn't allow its apps onto just any device and has denied certain Android-powered devices the license to use them, depriving users of these devices from the full Android experience.

Reply Score: 1

tidux Member since:
2011-08-13

I can't see Google preventing this thing from accessing the Market. It looks really nice on paper, and AFAIK all the Market blocks were for devices that didn't make the cut hardware-wise.

Reply Score: 1

unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

My extremely cheap Chinese Star A3000 (460MHz) Android phone has all the features you mention.

Edited 2011-09-01 07:21 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Comment by kovacm
by kovacm on Thu 1st Sep 2011 06:25 UTC
kovacm
Member since:
2010-12-16

This is definitely FUTURE of Android! ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by kovacm
by fran on Thu 1st Sep 2011 14:26 UTC in reply to "Comment by kovacm"
fran Member since:
2010-08-06

Yes the future of Android is inexpensive, full feature, powerfull computing devices.
What most of the world has been waiting for.

Reply Score: 3

What European marks?
by unclefester on Thu 1st Sep 2011 09:37 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

Phones are already closes to a 100% Taiwanese/Chinese product. The European input to hardware "manufacture" is not much more than than the case styling and the brand logo.

Reply Score: 2

Cheap?
by biffuz on Thu 1st Sep 2011 12:23 UTC
biffuz
Member since:
2006-03-27

How can you call this "cheap"? It may be cheaper than similar phones, but it's far from what someone can call cheap. Some weeks ago I found a flyer of a large chain of stores promoting a €99 Android phone - and anyone who's interested in such cheapiness just doesn't care about specs.

Reply Score: 2

It IS cheap
by nicolasgoddone on Thu 1st Sep 2011 13:50 UTC
nicolasgoddone
Member since:
2009-04-20

People complaining that this is not cheap obviously aren't early adopters or haven't bought a top of the line Android/iOS device near release dates. For the specs this device is cheap, period. Stop comparing it in functions to whichever device that has 256 of RAM or 800 ~ 1000 Mhz processor, this is a 45 nm. beastly chipset of the HTC Sensation which unlocked will set you back more that 550 Us$ !!, those who claim it is expensive are so wrong and clueless.

Reply Score: 2

RE: It IS cheap
by Soulbender on Thu 1st Sep 2011 19:35 UTC in reply to "It IS cheap"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Anyone who think $300 is globally cheap is wrong and clueless.

Reply Score: 4

RE: It IS cheap
by stanbr on Fri 2nd Sep 2011 19:46 UTC in reply to "It IS cheap"
stanbr Member since:
2009-05-22

Read the title again: "The Cheap Android Phone Is Here, But It's Not What You'd Expect"

So we are talking primarily about prices, not specs. In this context, the phone is not that cheap. The article is trying to say that there is a cheap phone that is also powerful. What some are trying to say is that there are many other alternative, much cheaper.

Cheap and not so powerful android phones is a reality. Cheap and powerful android phones (as the article tries to convince us) is not really a reality, cuz 300 dollars is a significant amount of money.

Cya.

Reply Score: 1

If I could actually buy
by Ultimatebadass on Fri 2nd Sep 2011 09:51 UTC
Ultimatebadass
Member since:
2006-01-08

that phone for 300$ with no additional bullshit "euro premium tax" I would. Sadly, it's probably going to be more like ~400$ when it finally reaches my corner of the world (Poland) after currency conversion and all the middle men.

Edit: typo.

Edited 2011-09-02 09:51 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Cyanogen mod with MIUI
by cycoj on Sun 4th Sep 2011 11:35 UTC
cycoj
Member since:
2007-11-04

Just for all the people here saying "does it have market, gmail ..." This phone is running MIUI which is a different UI based on Cyanongen Mod, so to a large degree developed out in the open, and yes it should be able to run all the google official programs. I have MIUI running on my Galaxy S here and I have to say it's really slick.

Reply Score: 2