HTC has held its global launch in New Delhi. A first for the company and probably a first for India too. Global launches do not happen in India as it is not yet the center of the technology world. In its global launch, to which I wasn’t invited, HTC has announced its Explorer Android phone. This happens to be HTC’s cheapest Android phone ever.
When anything cheap comes up, India is an obvious country to focus on. That’s what HTCs thinking has been. What a lot of people forget though is Indians don’t want, like or buy cheap products. Indians buy value for money products. You can sell a 40K iPhone or a 2K dual SIM phone with a torch light in India. But the common factor with an iPhone and a feature phone is the value which they are getting out of it. This value is key.
HTC Explorer has a launch price of Rs. 11650, runs Android 2.3, comes with a 3.2 inch touch screen, has a ‘powerful’ 600 MHz processor and a sidekick Adreno 200 GPU. 3G, WiFi and Bluetooth are present. Now is that cheap or value for money? Neither.
If we pit HTC Explorer with Motorola Fire based on the specifications, Explorer has a slightly bigger and brighter screen and a slightly faster RAM. The price difference between these two is Rs. 2651. Now that might not sound like a whole lot of money, but what HTC is trying to do is capture a market. That market segment is price sensitive.
Why not go full on? Why not launch HTC Explorer in the sub-10K range or with a 10K price tag.
LG Optimus Pro and Motorola Fire have set a new benchmark for sub-10K Android phones. HTC, unfortunately, did not try to compete with them. Instead HTC is trying to compete with Motorola Fire XT in pricing. But Motorola Fire XT is a much better phone with a faster processor and dual cameras.
HTC Explorer can use a price cut. It should be priced around 10K for it to reach its intended audience.
Image via BGR