Ex-Apple CEO’s co to launch 5.5 inch Obi Hornbill model at Rs 9k

Obi Mobiles, the emerging markets-focused smartphone company started by former Apple Inc CEO John Scully, will launch its second 5.5-inch smartphone – the Hornbill – this week.

The phone is likely to be priced in the Rs 8,000-9,000 range, and will be one of the most competitively priced smartphones in India.


Obi Mobiles has chosen India as its home market as it is focused on delivering the best smartphone experience at the lowest price possible.

Scully started Obi with the intention of taking the smartphone experience to markets where handsets like the iPhone are priced very high.

In India, for example, the latest 5.5-inch iPhone 6 plus, is priced in the Rs 62,500-83,000 range. In comparison, the Obi Hornbill 5.5-inch is priced at around a tenth of that.

The Hornbill will be powered by a MT6582 1.3 GHz Quad-Core Processor and will come with an 8MP camera and 4GB of internal memory.

The phone will have a 720p HD IPS display, unlike the Obi Crane, which is also a 5.5-inch phone that comes with a qHD display.

The phone, especially if priced in the Rs 8,500 range, will be one of the most compelling models in India to come with a quad-core processor.

On the other hand, if priced in the Rs 9,000-9,500 range, it would still be attractive, but would have to compete with modelS from Karbonn and Micromax.

For example, the cheapest 720p HD phone with KitKat from Micromax, the Canvas Knight Cameo, is priced at Rs 11,000, or about Rs 2,000 more than the likely price of the Obi Hornbill 5.5.

However, the Xolo Opus HD is priced in the Rs 9,000 range and comes with an HD display and Android KitKat. Similarly, the iBall Andi 5T Cobalt 2, with similar specifications, is available for Rs 8,900.

That said, the Mi RedMi 1S and the Huawei Honor Holly will continue to offer better value than the Obi Hornbill and the Micromax model despite their being 5-inch models due to their lower price tag. The Honor Holly is priced at Rs 7,000 and the RedMi 1S at Rs 6,000.