At the RIL 43rd AGM 2020, Mukesh Ambani announced that Jio has tied up with Google to develop an entry-level affordable smartphone, with a custom version of Android and the Play Store. Jio is partnering with the Mountain View giant to develop a custom OS for entry-level 4G/5G smartphones.
Notably, Google has also entered into a strategic partnership with Reliance Industries with an agreement of picking up a 7.73 percent stake in the company. To this measure, Google has announced an investment worth Rs 33,737 crore in the Jio platforms.
Jio and Google working on custom Android OS for affordable phones
Google and Jio are aiming to target feature phone users migrating to smartphones. The new 4G and 5G phones from Jio will be priced more affordably than existing options in the market. There are talks that the upcoming JioPhone 3 could be the entry-level smartphone with the new custom Android OS.
Sundar Pichai, CEO Google and Alphabet, said, “I am excited that our joint collaboration will focus on increasing access for hundreds of millions of Indians who don’t currently own a smartphone while improving the mobile experience for all.”
Sameer Samat VP of Product Management, Android and Google Play, further confirmed in an interview with Economic Times, “The time to increase our commitment to India’s significantly in collaboration with local companies and this partnership with Jio for us is really the first step of this. We want to work with Jio and other leaders in the local ecosystem to ensure that smartphones—together with the apps and services in the Play Store—are within reach for many more Indians across the country. And we believe the pace of Indian innovation means that the experiences we create for India can ultimately be expanded to the rest of the world.“