In its bid to make mobile phones available in 6 African countries that can’t afford internet-connected devices, Google is partnering with major phone stores in Nigeria to sell Infinix phones for as low as $87, while online retailer Jumia will distribute the phones to five other African countries including Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, and Ivory Coast.
Google made the announced Tuesday, revealing it is introducing low-priced smartphones to enable poor folks in six African countries obtain one.
Google choose to distribute Infinix phones because the company worked with the search engine giant on its “Hot 2” phone Android One program which debuted in India in 2014.
Android One is Google’s initiative to make cheap and affordable smartphones available in developing countries around the world where computers and high-end technologies are considered a luxury.
To this end, Google partners with phone manufacturers to make cheap phones that are still able to run its latest Android software version.
The Infinix phones that will be sold will have Android’s Lollipop software which was released last year, and the phones will be able to upgrade to Mashmallow, new Android release that will be out this fall.
The price of about $87 for the Infinix smartphones with the Hot 2 Android’s newest software is a steep bargain, considering that newest Android phones to be released next month by Samsung Electronics is about $700 to $800.
These Infinix Android phones to be released in Africa will only be able to perform basic functions as basic models, and cannot be compared with more expensive gadgets.
While Google has been trying to bring cheap and affordable phones to Africa and other poor countries, Facebook has been struggling to bring cheap internet connectivity to poor world nations where connectivity is high and unavailable. To this end, Google already built a fiber-optic network for faster internet access in Uganda’s capital, Kampala.