Phone providers offer gimmicks with cheap phones

Domestic mobile phone providers and importers are taking full advantage of the surge in demand for low-priced mobile phones with advanced applications, luring customers with cheap products that provide no guarantees.
A man uses a low-cost cell phone at a mobile phone shop in HCMC (Photo: Minh Tri)
Advanced applications like email, chat, web search or social networking are being vociferously advertised to lure customers, particularly the low-salaried customer for whom such services were a luxury just a few years ago.

For as little as VND1.5 million, users can now access internet services like Yahoo Messenger, Skype, Face book, Google or Twitter on their mobile phones connecting with people worldwide.

Though all these applications are not integrated in every model of low-priced mobile phones, the user still has a choice of selecting one that suits his or her purpose.

Most people are conned by glossy attractive advertisements whereas most of the products don’t meet expectations and are falsely shown to have features that are displayed.

Quang, a student said that his Samsung C3303 can be used for calling, messaging and music playing but not for web browsing although the VND1.39 million phone came guaranteed for Face book and Google browsing. 

Vinh, who owns a MobiStar @83, complained that his phone had an Opera web browser but he couldn’t access any website even once.

A representative of P&T Mobile, official distributor of Mobi Star (Belgium) in Vietnam affirmed that the web browser Opera in MobiStar @83 can operate, but was not always stable.

Nguyen Quang Minh, Director of ABTel, producer of Q-Mobile (Vietnam), justifies the problems saying that the products were not flawed but the internet connections to Face book or Twitter could well be.

Cheap phones themselves cannot access web pages easily due to limited functions and features, according to N.T.B, a veteran mobile phone user. The addition of internet applications in these products is just a sales gimmick by the providers.

Source: Sai Gon Tiep Thi – Translated by Huu Duy

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