Freedom 251: Adcom sold the phone at Rs. 3,600 per unit to Ringing Bells; threatens legal actions

The controversy’s favorite child, Freedom 251 smartphone, is now again in news, as Advantage Computers (Adcom) has threatened legal action against Ringing Bells Pvt. ltd., the makers of world’s cheapest smartphone.

Adcom says that Ringing Bells have showcased their Adcom Ikon 4 smartphones as Freedom 251 at the launch event last month. The company claims to have sold the handsets to Ringing Bells at Rs. 3,600 per handset, and was unaware that Ringing Bells plans to resale the device at Rs. 251.

Reacting to this, Ashok Chadha, President, Ringing Bells cleared it up that they only gave Adcom handsets as early prototype to media and the real “Freedom 251” will be a new product with all the promised features.

Surrounded with controversies, Ringing Bells recently has promised to refund the pre-booked amount to customers, and will now accept the payment only after delivery. The Freedom 251 was launched for Rs. 251 and the company has promised to deliver the first phase of smartphone by June.

In an e-mailed statement, Sanjeev Bhatia, Founder & Chairman, Advantage Computers, said,

“Touted to be the biggest scam of the millennium, Freedom 251, had recently announced that it would give out 25 lakh handsets in the first phase before June this year. Ensued by such unrealistic price rates and naive pronouncements, the parent company ‘Ringing Bells’ was not only accused of running a disgraceful ploy, but has also relabelled our brand Adcom. To clear the air around, I would like to underline few facts pertaining to case, as this scam exhibits the potential of maligning our brand name Adcom which is our trademark since 2001.”

He further added,

“Yes , it is true that, although we sold the handsets to ‘Ringing Bells’ earlier, like we sell Adcom mobiles to lakhs of users; we were absolutely unaware of the reselling plans of the company in question. Furthermore, we still haven’t been able to evaluate their pricing policy, as we sold the handsets at Rs. 3,600 per unit. We are deeply grieved by this incident where our mobile phone has been presented to masses for Rs. 251, and therefore, would not hesitate from taking any legal actions against the company, in case the entire fiasco impacts Adcom’s brand name or subsequently we face any other kind of losses. We would also like to assert that Adcom is in no way connected or linked with Ringing Bells or Freedom 251 and bears no responsibility what so ever, in the whole swindle and regret the inconvenience caused to our valued customers from all over the country.”

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