3G.co.uk are reporting that UK Supermarket Tesco is due to start stocking ‘Smartphones’. Presumably this is an attempt to drive up Subs on their MVNO network, but the fact that they are aiming to get eight handsets in-store by year-end, definitely means they are serious.
There is apparently some clarity on which the first two of these handsets will be – namely the Alcatel Tribe OT-800, and LG GW-300. These are budget devices, and depending on the definition you subscribe to, these don’t look to be strictly in the smartphones category, but rather devices that focus on messaging – both are rocking the QWERTY keyboard for example.
Tesco will of course be rolling out the usual incentives, such as free Internet access (for 3 months), and dropping the cost on the device itself – expect the Alcatel to weight in at about £50, with colour variants of pink and black.
I’m intrigued to see what the other handsets are – budget is good, but one of the keys to handset purchase is the desirability factor – and that’s something you mostly get with the from the usual handset vendor suspects…!