Google's first batch of Android One phones, designed specifically for developing markets, will be launched in India on Monday. But looks like the company's hardware partners -- Micromax, Spice and Karbonn -- can't wait to show the world their devices. While Micromax and Karbonn have released teaser for their Android One phones, the Spice phone - Android One Dream Uno Mi-498 - showed up on Flipkart on Saturday night.
The page for the Uno Mi-498 was live for a few hours before it was taken down. The device was priced at Rs 6,999, which was a little more than $100 that Google was hoping to hit with Android One phones but not by much.
The listing also gave the world a glimpse into what is coming tomorrow at Google's Android One event. The Uno Mi-498 uses a quad-core MediaTek processor running at 1.3GHz. It has 1GB RAM, 4GB internal storage (more can be added through a microSD card), 5-megapixel rear camera, 2-megapixel front camera, 1700 mAh battery and dual-SIM support.
The Uno Mi-498 has a 4.5-inch screen with 854 x 480 pixels. It supports 3G.
The listing on Flipkart showed that Google would give each Android One customer 35GB free storage in Google Drive.
The Uno Mi-498, just like other Android One phones, will use unmodified Android 4.4 aka Kitkat. The software updates for the phone will be handled by Google so it is likely that Android One users will see their devices updated to Android L when it launches in a few months from now.
As part of the Android One programme, Google decides the hardware and software for a phone while its hardware partners are responsible for marketing, sales and manufacturing of the devices. For the company, Android One is a way to tackle the fragmentation in Android market. By exercising more control on the software and hardware, it also hopes to bring better Android experience to consumers who don't want to spend a lot of money on their smartphones.
The Android One programme was announced by Sundar Pichai, who heads the Android division within Google, in June this year at its I/O conference. Pichai is expected to be in Delhi tomorrow during the Android One launch event, considering India is the first country to get these devices.
At its price, the Uno Mi-498 seems to have decent hardware. Though it can't match the Xiaomi RedMi 1S, which sells for Rs 5,999. Fortunately, for the Uno - and other Android One phones - buying RedMi 1S is rather difficult due to its low supply in India.
Another phone that will compete with the Uno is Moto E, a phone made by Google-owned Motorola.