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In a trendsetting move, Indian mobile device maker Micromax has launched its new Canvas Mad A94 model, which comes equipped with what it calls a MAd application. Basically, it pays you to watch an ad before you make a call.
MAd, or Micromax Advertising, is an application that gives users the option to watch advertisements and earn points which can then be converted into Indian currency and credited to their phone accounts. The app works across all of the device’s affiliated telecom operators and the credits are applicable to both pre-paid and post-paid plans.
Rahul Sharma, co-founder of Micromax (India’s second most popular smartphone brand after Samsung), states that company devised the phone as a medium through which it can interact, engage, entertain, and connect with consumers. “Based on their interests, likes, and preferences, we incentivize them through rewards.”
Indeed, the MAd application can serve as more than just easy money for lazy consumers – it lets brands communicate and interact with current and potential customers. In Sharma’s view, MAd will be a game changer for telco operators, who are looking for newer and more innovative ways to improve profitability.
“[MAd] will also prove to be very significant for mobile eco-systems by solving the problem of ARPU (Average revenue per user), and contributing to the overall profitability,” Sharma said.
For the launch of the phone, Micromax has also rolled out an accompanying Facebook game dubbed the ‘Ad Charade Contest’ where users can win one of the new phones by watching ads and guessing which brand is behind them.
In addition to the MAd application, the phone also offers the M!Live portal, which lets users enjoy unlimited downloads of games, videos, wallpapers, and music, along with BBM and Hike for instant messaging. It also comes pre-installed with Spuul, the Bollywood video-streaming service, Kingsoft Office, and Opera mini web-browser.
As for specs, the new Canvas Mad A94 runs Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2, and sports a 4.5-inch full touch screen and a 1.2 Ghz quad-core processor. It is priced at INR8490 (about US$138).
This article by Pankaj Maru originally appeared on Tech in Asia, a Burn Media publishing partner. Additional reporting by Memeburn.