My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: JA$6,950 DL750 and JA$8,250 DL800 on Sale at Digicel – Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 as ZTE Force Awakens and Alcatel’s Empire Strikes Back

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Saturday, December 13, 2014

JA$6,950 DL750 and JA$8,250 DL800 on Sale at Digicel – Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 as ZTE Force Awakens and Alcatel’s Empire Strikes Back

Today is a great day for a Sale at Digicel.

So it would seem as since Thursday December 11th 2014, Digicel has quietly announced a sale on their Digicel Twitter Page for the DL750, DL800 and the Alcatel One Touch Pop C1.



Also the DL750 is back on sale down from JA$7,950 to JA$6,950 along with the DL800, which has also taken a price cut from JA$9,250 to JA$8,250. The News here is that the Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 is for sale with its regular price reduced by JA$1000 from JA$4250 to JA$3250, Tax included of course as shown below.



So what going on? Looks like Digicel is “poppin” with more smartphones from the Alcatel line. But if so, who is the OEM (Original Equiptment Manufacturer) for the DL800 and the DL900?

DL750 and DL800 on Sale at Digicel – Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 is the latest drool-worthy smartphone

The DL800 was actually priced much higher at JA$11,563 inclusive of tax on Prepaid with a special discounted offer of JA$9250 for persons with Corporate ID at the Digicel New Kingston Store owned by Fimi Wireless as stated in my Geezam blog article entitled Digicel launches DL800 aka ZTE Kis 3 Max Second after Digicel DL900 on Christmas 2014”.

Good to note here that Digicel has already done a fire sale for the DL750 which was selling for JA$3450 (JA$4312.50 when Tax is Included) on Friday December 5th 2014 as reported in my Geezam blog article entitled “Digicel launches DL900 aka Alcatel Pop C7 as Digicel DL750 on Sale for Christmas 2014”.



The following Saturday December 12th 2014 saw huge lines of people at their Downtown Store eager to cash in on the deal for the DL750!

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About time too, as the DL750 wasn’t much improvement over the DL700 save for the fact it ran Google Android v4.4.2 (KitKat) whereas the DL700 was running Google Android v4.2 (Jellybean) and had Flash as noted in my blog article entitled “JA$13,688 Digicel DL750 Launched – Alcatel One Touch Pop C3 with Free TV App, DL600 issues in X-Men Origins First Class Days of Future Past”.
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The price drop today to JA$6,950, albeit not as low as the JA$3450 (JA$4312.50 when Tax is Included) on Friday December 5th 2014 and Saturday December 12th 2014 is still noteworthy. So where did the DL800 and DL900 come from? The answers will surprise you.

DL800 and the DL900 Origins – The ZTE Force Awakens as Alcatel’s Empire Strikes Back

According to Digicel’s Twitter Page, the DL800 was launched on Tuesday December 2nd 2014 as shown below.



A day later, the DL800 was launched Wednesday December 3rd 2014, again based on their Digicel’s Twitter Page.



As can be seen from these Twitter posting from Digicel, the DL800 originally cost JA$11,562.50 Prepaid and JA$9,250 Postpaid. The DL900 on the other hand, originally cost JA$14,937.50 Prepaid and JA$11,950 Postpaid.

On Monday December 8th 2014, I went to the Digicel Stores in New Kingston owned by Fimi Wireless, Half-Way-Tree and Tropical Plaza. I then discretely requested to see the DL800, the DL900 and new Huawei Ascend P7 which I'd seen on Smile Jamaica Morning Time that very morning. I was able to obtain the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identification) Number and using my access to an IMEI lookup service I was able to identify the OEM of the DL800 and the DL900.

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Turns out that the DL800 is a ZTE Kis 3 Max whereas the DL900 is an Alcatel One Touch Pop C7, as per the results of the IMEI lookup as summarized in the Table.

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The use of a ZTE Kis 3 Max marks the first time that Digicel has decided to use an OEM other than Alcatel for their “DLXXX” line of smartphones. ZTE is a Chinese Telecoms Equipment Provider that also dabbles in the smartphone world with the following four (4) Series of smartphones:

1.      Grand
2.      Nubia
3.      Blade
4.      Kis

They introduced the ZTE Kis 3 Max at the IFA 2014 Trade show in Berlin, Germany on Tuesday September 9th 2014 as stated in the article “IFA Berlin: ZTE announces new smartphones from popular Blade and Kis series”, published 2014/9/4, ZTE Website, along with two other members of the Blade and Kis Series:

1.      ZTE Blade Vec 4G
2.      ZTE Blade Vec 3G
3.      ZTE Kis 3 Max

According to a ZTE Representative I spoke to at the Tropical Plaza Branch, the Digicel apparently were approached by ZTE to sell the ZTE Blade Vec 3G and the ZTE Kis 3 Max aka the DL800. The ZTE Blade Vec 3G wasn't available at the time I was at the store, but I was assured that it would be in stock by Thursday December 11th 2014.

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I haven’t gone back to make sure, but I will probably spin through the Digicel Stores on Monday December 15th 2014 to check to see if they have them in stock. I’d love to do a hands-on review of the ZTE Blade Vec 3G as well as the Huawei Ascend P7.

The DL900 aka the Alcatel One Touch Pop C7, on the other hand, is an older Alcatel smartphone that was among four (4) that popped up back on Friday September 6th 2013 at the very same IFA 2014 Trade show in Berlin, Germany as stated in the article “Alcatel announces four new One Touch Pop C-series smartphones” published September 06, 2013by Ketan Pratap, NDTV Gadgets.

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Those four (4) Alcatel smartphones in the Pop Series are:

3.      Alcatel One Touch Pop C5


Digicel has apparently taken the Alcatel One Touch Pop C7 and rechristened it as the DL900 and the Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 launched it as is. Thus expected to see more Alcatel One Touch Series and ZTE Blade and Kis smartphones coming out later in 2015!



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So now on to the exciting bit, that being the specs of the DL800 aka the ZTE Kis 3 Max and the DL900 aka the  Alcatel One Touch Pop C7 as well as the Alcatel One Touch Pop C1!

Specs of the DL800, DL900 and Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 – Lots of horsepower, little Playroom

Since I’ve already dealt with the DL800 and the DL900 specs in my Geezam blog article entitled “Digicel launches DL900 aka Alcatel Pop C7 as Digicel DL750 on Sale for Christmas 2014” and Digicel launches DL800 aka ZTE Kis 3 Max Second after Digicel DL900 on Christmas 2014”, I’ll simply present a Comparison Chart of the three (3) smartphones.

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Not surprisingly, the Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 is the lighter of the three (3) smartphones and also has the smallest screen. It also has fewer features, including no Front Facing Camera and no video on the Rear-Facing Camera.

But its shares equal kinship with its more advanced brother, the Alcatel One Touch Pop C7, in that it’s Dual-SIM Capable, which I noticed when I’d inspected the smartphone at the Digicel Store in New Kingston owned by Fimi Wireless.

I realize that it might be disabled but the fact that it’s there makes it attractive to anyone wanting to buy it, thinking they would unlock it and makes them into Dual-SIM phones capable of using both LIME and Digicel SIM Cards.

Unlocking a smartphone by the way, can cost as little as JA$6000 to as much as JA$13,000 based on the procedure as laid out in my blog article entitled “How to unlock any phone and put it on any Network - Guaranteed to unlock any Feature or Smartphone on the Chennai Express”, depending on where you go in Half-Way-Tree, Cross Roads or Downtown to have your smartphone unlocked.

Digicel betting on the Trend of Dual-SIM smartphones – Customer will love this New feature

Please note this is speculation on my part; the Digicel Representative was adamant that Dual-SIM wasn’t Digicel’s policy.

Still with MNP (Mobile Number Portability) and LNP (Landline Number Portability) approaching by Sunday May 31st 2014 and interconnection IXP (Internet Exchange Point) being a part of the overall plan of the OUR (Office of Utilities Regulation) for the Telecom Providers as noted in my blog article entitled “Jamaica's Local Internet Exchange Point - IXP Lower Routings, Web Hosting and Websites Loading on smartphones as Jamaican Domain Name Registration and MNP, LNP Approaches”, this seems likely to be their plan.

The logic may be that at JA$6000 to JA$13,000 to unlock a Dual-SIM smartphone, the subscriber would rather buy a second Digicel SIM (Subscriber Identification Module) Card and place it in the SIM 2 slot than go through all that hassle. This as JA$6000 to JA$13,000 would effectively be the equivalent cost of a second phone to unlock the Dual-SIM Feature, thus dissuading the subscriber from paying the cost to a smartphone unlocker just for that additional feature.

Digicel merely has to make sure the cost of the DL900 and Alcatel One Touch Pop C1 the doesn’t fall below JA$4000, as that would make it cost-effective enough some some Jamaicans to attempt to pay to unlock the Dual-SIM Feature to us any SIM Card from any Network.

So this may be a way for Digicel to meet some customer half-way by making their smartphones dual-SIM, albeit MNP and LNP doesn’t require that they be Dual-SIM. Digicel, by this clandestine move, may be simply acknowledging the eventuality of the coming of Dual-SIM smartphones as I’d predicted in my Geezam blog article entitled “Trend towards Dual-SIM Smartphones developing in Jamaica as MNP Approaches”.

So now that the choices are laid out clearly before you, which one of these smartphones will be yours for the Christmas 2014 and the New Year 2015, the Year of the Sheep? Check back with my blog or just follow Digicel Jamaica’s website, Digicel Jamaica YouTube Page, Digicel’s Facebook Page and Digicel’s Twitter Page.




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