Lava Mobiles, which was once among the top five mobile brands in the country, has marked its return with a new Z series of smartphones. But unlike other players, Lava is attempting something entirely new with its Z series. It is offering customers the ability to upgrade their smartphones after purchase. Lava will let users bump up the RAM and storage on their phones, within one year of purchase. Plus there’s an option to pick and choose your own specifications before you purchase the device. So how will these plans work? We take a look below
What is the Build MyZ program? How will Lava work to support this system?
The Build MyZ program is the one where users can choose from a list of pre-fixed specifications to create their own custom device. Lava says that 66 combinations will be available in this MyZ program. Lava’s chief manufacturing officer Sanjeev Agarwal said in the press conference that the company has managed to achieve certain “flexibilities in terms of software, hardware and manufacturing process,” which is allowing for the upgrade and customisation process.
What will the price of these custom-built phones?
According to Lava, the minimum price of these custom-built phones under the MyZ program will be Rs 6,900 and going to a maximum of Rs 10,500.
So how will a user be able to build their own phone? What will be the process?
According to Lava President Sunil Raina, the company will have a dedicated page for the ‘Build MyZ’ option. He explained in the press conference that a page will go live on the company website, and users will be able to choose the device and the specifications they prefer. Purchase will happen from 11th January onwards for the MyZ phones.
Lava also plans to make the option available at offline stores, and according to Raina, the company already has an app built which will help them do this. The app will be available at 10,000 retailers who work with the company. So the retailer will be able to offer this as an option to customer when they walk in. Lava’s idea is that the retailer can give the app as an option depending on the user requirement and they can choose the right product for themselves.
What specifications will be offered in the Build MyZ feature?
There are a select set of specifications being offered by Lava. The display remains at 6.5-inch at HD+ resolution, and the processor will be MediaTek Helio G35 octa-core processor. The battery remains 5000 mAh and there is a Type-C USB port as well. However customers can choose between RAM, ROM, camera combinations and the colour of the device, when creating their own device.
Users will have the option of choosing between 2GB, 3GB, 4GB or 6GB RAM, and matching it with 32GB, 64GB & 128GB ROM depending on preference. Further they can choose between a dual (13+2MP) or a triple rear camera (13+5+2MP) camera at the back. For the front camera, the choice will be between an 8MP or a 16MP one. Customers can also select the colour for their device.
Can you upgrade a device built under the MyZ program?
Yes, Lava will let you upgrade a device built under the MyZ program.
How does one upgrade an existing phone from Lava?
Lava is also selling fixed variants under the Z2, Z4 and Z6 names. Users can upgrade these later on. However, Lava will only let you upgrade the RAM and ROM in the ‘Up MyZ’ program. So say you have the Z2 device, which has 2GB RAM and 32GB storage, and you want to upgrade it to 128GB storage while leaving the RAM intact, that will be possible. You can also upgrade both the RAM and ROM on the device. Customers will have to pay extra for upgrading the RAM and ROM. Lava says they are not offering an option to upgrade any other specification right now.
According to Lava, the option to upgrade will be live on their website from January 26. Users will be able to take an appointment at a service centre and they will be given an appointment date. The appointment data will depend on the time that it takes for the component to be arranged there, according to Lava. Users can then just go at the appointed date and get the upgrade done. Lava says it will be done in an hour, which is quite a big claim.
What Lava has not explained is how is it upgrading the RAM and ROM on a phone since most phones rely on a single system-on-chip SoC, which is an integrated circuit that houses all the computing components. Unlike traditional computers where one can upgrade RAM and storage. Lava claims it has made some achievements in the manufacturing process, which allows this to be possible.
What will it cost to upgrade?
According to the example Lava showed, upgrading to 4GB+64GB will cost Rs 1949 extra. Lava says the cost will be incremental.
Will I lose date if I upgrade my RAM and ROM?
Lava says they will try and ensure there is no data loss if one were to upgrade their RAM and ROM.
What about warranty if I upgrade? Can I upgrade a custom-build phone from Lava?
Warranty will remain as is even if you upgrade. Lava will let you upgrade within one year of purchase. Custom phones can also be upgraded under the program.