Do you even remember Freedom 251? The smartphone that was going to be sold for just ₹251, enabling all Indians to buy one and get connected to the digital world? While that dream has yet to turn into reality, Freedom 251 is once again getting some free publicity.
The phantom device, much talked about but never spotted, has topped the list of Google's most searched for smartphones in India. After releasing the list of the most searched terms by Indians, Google has now released a list of smartphones most searched for by Indians on its online search engine.
Freedom 251, "the world's cheapest smartphone" was to be manufactured by a company called Ringing Bells, which hogged the headlines every few weeks with new announcements and details about its astoundingly cheap device.
Apple's iPhone 7 is second in the charts, followed by Xiaomi's Redmi Note 3. Google's own Pixel is in the 9th position.
Freedom 251 was launched in February and straight into controversy when the paint on the phones handed over to the media started to come off. It was soon revealed that the device was not actually produced by Ringing Bells but sourced from Adcom. The website for the phone was a security nightmare and easily hackable.
After many delays, Ringing Bells finally began the shipping the phones in July but it is yet to be confirmed if even a single customer has actually received the smartphone.
Here is the list of the ten most searched for smartphones in India on Google Search in 2016.
1. Freedom 251
2. iPhone 7
3. Redmi Note 3
4. Lenovo K4 Note
5. Samsung J7
6. Moto G4
7. OnePlus 3
8. iPhone SE
9. Google Pixel
10. Lenovo K5 note
Apple's new iPhone had its own share of 'Haws' and 'Wows'. The iPhone 7 did not feature any big design changes, to the disappointment of many. However, the removal of 3.5 mm audio jack, a move that Apple said showed "courage" on its part was much debated. Overall, thanks to the dual camera in iPhone 7 Plus and the other upgrades, Apple managed to grab the headlines.
India's smartphone king, Samsung, was able to grab just one spot in top-10 list with its Galaxy J7. Lenovo, on the other hand, secured three spots with the Moto G5, the Lenovo K5 Note, and the Lenovo K4 Note. The Chinese smartphone maker and rapidly rising star, Xiaomi, is third on the list with Xiaomi Redmi Note 3.
OnePlus 3, the smartphone made by OnePlus, was well received by consumers and reviewers alike, which explains its 7th place in the chart. With new phones and features such as bezel-less display on the anvil, 2017 promises to another eventful and exciting year for smartphones.