Aircel "Peek", A Qwerty Email Handset For Rs 2,999
By on March 13th, 2010

Aircel India has taken a huge gamble by introducing a new device called "Peek" which is a Qwerty device similar to those provided by RIM’s Blackberry.

Aircel PEEK

The device which is targeted at email users, has a Qwerty keyboard and is specifically for emails. Aircel boasts that Peek is the thinnest email device ever created. Peek in itself is not a pricey device, and at Rs. 2,999 it is almost a steal, but would Indian consumers really buy a device just for emails?

Consider this, most of the smartphones available today have email capability along with video, camera, voice and more, so would users buy a device just for the sake of email?

The marketing strategy of Aircel may not be wrong, but they are basically targeting a small niche of users who want dedicated devices to check their email and not the entire package which a smartphone offers. Whether a device with only email capabilities succeeds or not is a feat we will be watching.

Specifications: Aircel Peek is available in the two colors, black and red and comes with a Qwerty keyboard. Users can currently configure only 3 email accounts, which makes no sense to me and will have PUSH email capability.

Battery life is supposedly 2-3 days, but expect it to be much lower if you are a heavy email user. To top it you can only store up-to 5000 email message right now and about 1000 contacts.

Charges: Users will have to pay an initial amount of Rs. 897 for email access for 90 days and then have to shell out a monthly charge of Rs. 299 every month to download their emails.

Verdict: This device will definitely not take off as much as Aircel expects, considering that it restricts users to only 3 email accounts and also has a charge of Rs. 299 per month which is almost equivalent to a GPRS connection price one pays on mobile smartphones. In addition to that, this device is practically useless without a Internet connection and does not even allow you to make phone calls. All in all, my prediction is that, this device will be a big failure.

If you are interested in the Aircel Peek, you can find more information and purchasing details at the Official Aircel site.

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Author: Keith Dsouza Google Profile for Keith Dsouza
I am the editor-in-chief and owner of Techie Buzz. I love coding and have contributed to several open source projects in the past. You can know more about me and my projects by visiting my Personal Website. I am also a social networking enthusiast and can be found active on twitter, you can follow Keith on twitter @keithdsouza. You can click on my name to visit my Google+ profile.

Keith Dsouza has written and can be contacted at keith@techie-buzz.com.
  • svengali

    Peek will be the device that young Indian crave.

    EMail will replace sms (unlimited messages for Rs. 299 monthly) . Absolutely NO hidden charges and NO SPAM messages from the Carrier!

    The best introduction to EMail for the tech challenged and the most hip device for the economically challenged (read – young students)

  • http://www.theanand.com/ TheAnand

    maybe we can crack the firmware to enable voip over 3g or something…then it would make a whole lot of sense!

    • sanjay

      thats really an Indian talking… ;-) but till then Peek won't be worth a "peek"…

  • Dinesh

    i don't this will be something like game changer or any thing …

    they need to be bit practical .. and need to add some more feature with it ….

    if u want such product at low cost i will think micromax q5 is good product at 5.5k

    • S. Thomas, Mumbai

      Except for the fact that it doesn't support 3G, I would have gone in for the Micromax Q5 myself.

      Micromax's H360 (2.4 inches, 240 x 320 pixels, 113 x 49.8 x 13mm) supports 3G, but the talk time is just 4 hours. This handset also costs around 5.5k

      • Dinesh

        just mentioned q5 as its QWERTY handset .. and i love them :P

        now a days there many option available specially with dual sim .. the company are new one .. but still pricing still prominent .. and its always good to go for that one instead of getting china handset available which create the problem regarding IMEI number …

        now a days intex also introduced the handset with triple sim ….

  • Sen

    Yes, you are right… My prediction is also the same… In most cases the plans, offers and ideas of AIRCEL are like this only…

    If others fly, AirCel start crawl. :)

  • S. Thomas, Mumbai

    MTNL has a 'packaged bundle' – 3G Jadoo services along with a Micromax H360 (2.4 inches, 240 x 320 pixels, 113 x 49.8 x 13mm). This handset comes pre-loaded with proprietory applications, which enables video calls, mobile TV, NimBuzz Social Messenger application, download from the Internet, etc. The cost – Rs. 5,499. (Note: the NimBuzz supports email as well as access Facebook and Orkut.)

    The Aircel 'Peek' device may have a larger screen and a QWERTY keypad but the upfront cost is Rs 2,999 + Rs. 897 (ie., handset cost and cost of email access for 90 days, respectively).

    And, MTNL's monthly charge for 3G is far cheaper than Aircel's charge of Rs. 299.

    Since the Peek can't be used to make calls, would I want to carry this gadget just to check my mail? NO.

    MTNL's offer -'3G Advantage' is aimed at giving the first experience of 3G – the next generation mobile service FREE OF COST.

    Incidently, HCL has a 3G enabled ME netbook comes with an embedded 3G Module and a SIM card slot as has Olive (a mobile handset maker). Dell also plans to offer notebooks with embedded 3G module.

    Disclosure: I don't work for MTNL or any public sector enterprose. I write about MTNL only because I'm Mumbai based. I'm sure BSNL will have similar offers for the rest of India.

  • http://www.parasarora.com Paras

    Hi Keith,

    Do you think Micromax is really worth it. I mean is it dependable. I have been thinking of buying something for my mails, twitter, facebook etc… which one should i go for

    @pappe_it_is

    • http://keithdsouza.com Keith Dsouza

      @Paras – From the config and price of the device, Micromax does look like a good for the price, specially when it supports 3G

 
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