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Pepsi is launching an Android phone in China

Pepsi is launching an Android phone in China


A brand-new brand phone

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If I told you that there was a new Android phone with a 5.5-inch 1080p screen, 2GB of RAM, a 1.7GHz processor, a 3,000 mAh battery, and a 13-megapixel camera, would any of that information turn your head? Possibly. But what if it only cost $200, and it was being sold by Pepsi?

That's right, Pepsi is apparently making a phone (no, not that one) called the Pepsi P1. A number of Android sites have dug up a leaked image of a new device that is clearly branded with the Pepsi logo, something that was even teased on the company's Weibo account just a few days ago. But Pepsi hasn't gone and designed the phone itself. Instead, it's contracted an unknown phone manufacturer to do the job (the device does have a certain Huawei aesthetic to it, for what it's worth). The latter is a move that we've seen other brands (like Kodak) attempt in the past, one that almost always produces pretty awful results.

The draw here is, obviously, the price. Phone makers big and small have spent the last year or so pushing the boundaries when it comes to how little they're willing to charge for unlocked, nearly-premium phones. But affordable Android phones are nearly a dime a dozen in China, which is where the Pepsi Phone will be sold. If and when it goes on sale, Pepsi will supposedly charge just 1,299 yuan — about $205 US, or at least a few thousand bottle caps and UPC labels.

Update October 12th, 2:01PM ET: PepsiCo Inc. has told Reuters that the phone is real, but that the company is just licensing its branding. Another company will manufacture the phone. The article has been updated to reflect this.

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