The continuing saga of the company behind the so-called “$4 smartphone” took a new turn this week. Ringing Bells, the India-based company behind the ultra cheap Freedom 251 handset, is denying published reports that it is shutting down.
The reports are based on the fact that the founders of Ringing Bells launched an all new company, MDM Electronics Private Limited, earlier in December. Also, the official website for Ringing Bells has not been live for the past couple of months. However, Gadgets Now received a statement this week from a Ringing Bells spokesperson, stating that MDM is a separate company with its own goals. The spokesperson called the rumors of Ringing Bells’ shutdown “false”and added that the company is “very well in the market” and “operating as earlier”.
However, the spokesperson did admit that the company’s CEO Dharna Goel has now resigned, and that Anmol Goel, one of its founding directors, is now currently running the company.
Ringing Bells got a ton of media coverage when it revealed it would sell the Android-based Freedom 251 for just Rs 251, or a mere $4 in US dollars. However, this week the Ringing Bells spokesperson stated that the company has only shipped 70,000 units of the phone to parts of India. That’s well below a previous statement that claimed it would ship a whopping 2.5 million units by the end of June 2016.