MTN Steppa smartphone a “huge success”

MTN says its low cost smartphone, the MTN Steppa, has been a “huge success” since its launch in January.

MTN SA CEO, Zunaid Bulbulia said that the initial batch of between 50,000 – 60,000 units “didn’t touch sides in our warehouse” and has been a big success in terms of sell through.

MTN launched the Steppa as an Android smartphone that could be sold for less than $50 making it the “most affordable, easy to use and high performance touchscreen Android smartphone in the country”.

The smartphone features a 3.5-inch touch screen display, FM radio and a 2MP camera with video recording.

The MTN Steppa is based on a Qualcomm Reference Design, powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor.

It is available in selected retail stores for R499 on MTN’s pre-paid price plans. It also comes with a standard free Social Networking Bundle for the first three months.

Mike Fairon, GM of products and solutions at MTN, recently said: “What we have seen on this device is that the return rates, or the fault rates are at the same range as any tier 1 manufacturer.”

Fairon said that their research into user habits guided the development of the MTN Steppa, which is behind the success of the device. It is, however, only the beginning.

“The Steppa phone is part of a bigger program, and we’ve looked into the future in terms of the next type of devices which are coming,” said Fairon.

Bulbulia said that the group would continue to monitor the user patters of the device to determine whether there is an uplift in data usage.

Sifiso Dabengwa, group chief executive and president of MTN told Moneyweb: “We are testing it in South Africa and we are looking at rolling it out in all our other operations.”

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MTN Steppa smartphone a “huge success”