The Freedom 251 smartphone will official be unveiled by manufacturer
Ringing Bells in India shortly, and it seems to be the cheapest
smartphone in the whole world. Running Android 5.1, it sounds on paper
like a usable phone - it might not impress anyone, but at a price of
just Rs. 251, it doesn't exactly need to blow you away in terms of
performance. However, there are some points for concern about the phone,
as was noticed when we first got our Freedom 21 unit.
(Also see: Freedom 251: Your 5-Point Cheat Sheet to the Rs. 251 Smartphone)
starters, the Freedom 251 unit we received bears the logo of Adcom,
which has been covered with a sticker. Adcom is a Delhi-based importer
of IT products that deals in smartphones and tablets. At first glance,
the Freedom 251 appears similar to the Adcom Ikon
and has reasonably similar specifications as well. The Adcom Ikon 4 has
also got a similar design, and has a 4-inch display, Android 5.1, a
1.3GHz quad-core processor, 5-megapixel rear camera, and 1.3-megapixel
front camera, with 8GB of storage, and 1GB of RAM.
(Also see: Freedom 251 full specifications)
more, the UI of the Freedom 251 has been customised to look a lot like
an iPhone. In fact, many of the icons look identical to apps that ship
with Apple's phone, which makes us wonder if it will attract some
attentions from lawyers at Cupertino.
not the only cause for concern though. All phones sold in India must be
certified by the Bureau of Indian Standards
(BIS). Getting this certification
done is both time consuming and
However, it appears that the BIS registration of the Ringing Bells
Freedom 251 has not been done, as it is not listed in the list of
manufacturers registered by
This means that if the phone is a new device made by Ringing Bells,
then it has not been certified as safe for use in India.
(Also see: Freedom 251 in pictures)
this means is that the Adcom A400, or at least some variant thereof,
could well be the origin of the Freedom 251. That phone was made two
years ago, and if old stock were to be repurposed, it
would explain the relatively low cost of the phones. It still sounds
like a great deal at Rs. 251, though perhaps less of a Make in India
accomplishment than it is being made out to be.
Gadgets 360 wrote
to a Ringing Bells representative asking about concerns raised in this
article, and we received a mail that stating "all answers will be given
on stage in the presence of the ministers". Let's hope we get answers to
our questions about Freedom 251 shortly.