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Edison Group, the company behind Bangladeshi smartphone powerhouse Symphony has joined forces with local telecom operator Grameenphone to launch a new premium 4G enabled smartphone dubbed the Helio S1. From what we understand, the Helio brand is not directly under Symphony even though it is found on the Symphony website. My main argument is that there is no sign of Symphony branding on the device itself nor is it a part of the device’s name. We will have to wait and see how Edison Group works with this new entity and markets it. My speculation is that the Helio moniker will be used exclusively for a premium set of smartphones although I may be wrong.
Talking about the new smartphone itself now, the Helio S1 is being touted for its 4G capabilities, 64-bit processor and design. In brief, the Helio S1 is a pretty looking device with an attractive metal finish and a 6.95mm profile. The sleek body is fused to a powerful octa-core 1.3GHz processor and 2GB of RAM. An HD 5-inch AMOLED screen is also present to offer the super deep blacks and high saturation popularized by Samsung’s smartphones. The display is protected with Gorilla Glass 3 to offer resistance against scratches and drops. Interestingly a 13 megapixle Sony IMX214 sensor with F2.0 aperture has also made its way onto the Helio S1 paired with a seemingly powerful 8 megapixel front facing camera. All of this will be run on Android 5.1 Lollipop.
Back in March we heard that 4G will probably not roll-out this year in Bangladesh due to a combination of factors including lack of proper infrastructure, spectrum regulation and absence of 4G enabled smartphones in the hands of most of the consumers. Even though the Helio S1’s 4G abilities will not be put to use yet, it is paving the way to bring more locally sold 4G enabled devices to the hands of the masses.
The Helio S1 was available for prebooking from 18th August until 25th August 2015 from Symphony Smart Plug-In, Symphony Exclusive Priority Outlets and Grameenphone centers. The first 1,000 customers to pre-book will be getting a flashlight enabled selfie stick for free.
Let’s see how the first 4G enabled device in Bangladesh fares in the market!