ZTE Open, world’s first smartphone running on Mozilla’s Firefox OS, is now available in India at eBay India. What’s interesting here is eBay India is promoting this as an eBay exclusive and is also running a contest on its official Twitter account.
ZTE had inked exclusive agreement with eBay US and UK to retail the phone in August 2013, and has now introduced the phone in India, albeit with a limited amount of exclusive handsets, which is being offered along with free shipping and one year ServePro all India warranty. So its possible that ZTE is probably testing out waters with eBay India to gauge the response for the device, before a complete handset rollout in the country.
What’s worth noting here is similar to eBay US and eBay UK, the phone is being retailed by an eBay retailer (in this case, called ‘randeep_singh_arora’), rather than ZTE or eBay itself. While it wouldn’t matter to the consumer much as long as the products are authentic and the warranties are honored, we wonder how long will this partnership will remain exclusive, since users can buy the device from eBay and sell it any other marketplace like Flipkart or Snapdeal. We have contacted eBay India for more details on this partnership.
For the uninitiated, ZTE Open is targeted at those who have not used a smartphone before and has got some decent reviews. Moreover, the price point of Rs 7,000 is also quite interesting. That said, Firefox OS is still a new operating system, therefore it will be interesting to see how many of them would prefer this device over a Chinese-made Indian-branded Android devices that is much more powerful and has similar pricing.
ZTE Open comes with a 3.5-inch screen and is available in bright orange color variant. It is powered by a single-core 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and 512MB of expandable storage. It also has 256MB of RAM and a 3.2-megapixel camera on the back. Apart from ZTE, other OEMs such as LG and Lava are also working on devices that will run Firefox OS.
(NT Balanarayan contributed to this article)