Old Indian operators are thinking how to beat the Jiophone. However currently not even a 3G feature phone is available in market, leave aside a 4G feature phone. Brand like Micromax, Lava, Karbonn, Gionee don’t have any 3G feature phone in market(confirmed on twitter).
Samsung use to have one feature phone in market but was costly in Rs.3000+ range. In same price range a Lyf 4G smartphone from Jio is available.
Vodafone’s international sister concerns in AU & NZ give 3G feature phone in mere 20$ (Rs.1000). With it’s parent links to many handsets vendor we could at least have gotten something in Rs.1500-2000 range but no. who cares for feature phone users.
2G network of incumbent is already overloaded with spectrum streamlining that happened after auctions in last 3 years. Don’t they think it’s time to switch these users to atleast 3G network which got better capacity to take on VoLTE/4G network.
For this first handset need to be available in market. Atleast they could have launched their own 3G feature phone. Unable to chalk out a future network strategies is their low point. Which is now being taken to advantage by Jio with things like Jiophone.
And now these incumbents specially Vodafone n Idea(suffering on 4G front also) are in jeopardy position. If they ever think to switch off 2G network then many customer would churn either to another 2G network or Jiophone 4G network. If they keep running this 2G network then costly spectrum is wasted to voice only with capacity constraints to compete with 4G/VoLTE network. Add the missing data capacity, making them suffer even on 4G front.
Now you gotta fight for same 2G customers you were ignoring for so long.