As 3G coverage of the telco networks expands, telecom operators are looking forward to capitalize on the opportunities of providing the most economical packages and smartphone devices to attract more and more customers. Ufone’s 3G-enabled, super-cheap Smart U5 smartphone and Zong’s plan to introduce a 4G LTE-supported smartphone of its own in Pakistani market are the baby-steps that are being taken in the direction of a Pakistan that relies on 3G/4G connectivity as their primary network for their needs. Another exploitable option in this scenario is the installment-based purchase of smartphones via telecom operators.
According to the announcement made via the official Facebook page of EasyPaisa, the company is currently offering 10 handset models from Nokia, QMobile and Samsung. The list currently includes Nokia Asha 500, Nokia X, Nokia X2, QMobile Noir i5, QMobile Noir A110, QMobile Noir A120, QMobile Noir A8i, QMobile E85, Samsung Galaxy Ace 4 Lite, and Samsung Galaxy Ace 4 (Dual SIM).
The phones being offered range from PKR 3,800 to PKR 14,800 in base price which increases if the phone is obtained with an instalment plan to boot. Several of these options are 3G-enabled (Nokia X, X2, QMobile A120, etc.) while others are not (Nokia Asha 500, QMobile E85).
To initiate an order request, interested customers can drop their details (Name, CNIC, and an active Telenor number) to the EasyPaisa’s official Facebook page. An EasyPaisa correspondent will then respond with the details of the package plan and other details.
While the concept of installment-based smartphone purchases in not entirely novel, it relies heavily on a number of factors for success, such as the price range, flexibility of instalment plans, security concerns, and the devices that are being made available for purchase. The offer is no doubt attractive but the phones being offered by Telenor via EasyPaisa are very limited, and we sure hope to see more options in the near-future.