In an attempt to increase its average revenue per user (ARPU), Reliance Jio is in talks with Qualcomm Technologies to introduce laptops with SIM cards. This could be the next big thing in the telecom industry after smartphones and 4G feature phones.
Qualcomm is a US chip major that has been working with Reliance Retail and Jio for the 4G feature phone technology. Reliance Jio is looking to partner with the same company for the installation of cellular connections in laptops that operate on Windows 10.
Qualcomm has confirmed that it is also in discussion with Internet of Things (IoT) brand Smarton for the launch of laptops powered by Snapdragon 835 and cellular connection. On a global scale the company is in alliance with industry majors such as Asus, HP, and Lenovo for the production of “Always Connected PCs”.
Senior director of Product Management at Qualcomm Technologies, Miguel Nunes, said that there are 14 operators that are interested in partnering with Qualcomm for this new category. This includes AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint from the US, and several major carriers in Europe and Australia.
Industry experts are of the opinion that laptops with SIM cards could be the next prominent ARPU device that could exceed the popularity of smartphones. As per the data collected by Counterpoint Research, there are approximately 5 million laptops being sold each year in India. Most of these connect to either homes, enterprises, or public WiFi facilities. If these devices are connected to cellular networks, the value proposition will be boosted resulting in exceptional growth in the segment. The advantages to the user include connectivity that can be accessed even while travelling and extremely secure connections when compared to WiFi hotspots.
Nunes said that the company is looking to make operators understand the value addition this technology promises, as it is currently new for the channel and the operators alike.