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Google's Android One debuts in PHL, priced below P5k

Google Philippines, together with local phone brands Cherry Mobile and MyPhone, announced on Tuesday, February 17, that it is finally bringing the much-anticipated Android One smartphone into the country at a retail price of under P5,000.

Touted as a smartphone for the masses, the Android One is Google's attempt to establish a range of baseline features at an affordable price point.

Android One is Google's initiative to make high-quality smartphones available to the public for affordable prices, in an effort to make them accessible to as many people as possible.
The Philippines will be the sixth country to join the Android One program. Other countries already in the program include India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia.
The Cherry One and MyPhone Uno will be available nationwide. Both phones will come with Android Lollipop and will automatically receive updates for up to two years. The Android One hardware includes features like front- and rear-facing cameras, an FM radio tuner, dual SIM slots, and a microSD slot.
Gmail, Google Maps, YouTube, Google Search, and Google Translate are pre-loaded on the phones.
Smart and Sun will provide Android One users with free over-the-air updates to the Android OS without deductions from their mobile data plan.
Google claimed it is working to reduce data costs for Filipino Android One users by providing a data compression feature on Android One Chrome.

"We are very happy to bring Android One smartphones to the Philippines," said Caesar Sengupta, Google's VP for Product Management. "Working with great partners like Cherry Mobile and MyPhone, we have designed and brought to market these high quality smartphones at highly affordable prices. We cannot wait to see what Filipinos do with them."

Last September, Sundar Pichai, Android senior vice president for Chrome and Apps, promised that the phones—aimed at making smartphones accessible to the masses—will run on the latest version of Android.

"The software on Android One devices automatically updates to the latest version of Android and will be some of the first to get the Android L release later this fall. The goal is to provide a consistent and uncompromising smartphone experience, for everyone," he said.
He pointed out that, at present, even entry-level smartphones are out of reach for many, while many do not have access to the latest Android software and apps.
"(E)ven where 3G and 4G networks are available, not enough people have phones that can support data and the plans can be expensive," he added. — TJD, GMA News