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IMEI Fiasco does not Dent China Made Phone Sales

The Government banned phones without IMEI numbers from December 1. While this effectively put a lot of cheap mobile phones out of circulation, the wide open gap in the market was taken up by “Indian Brands” of mobile phones, which are highly local mobile phone manufacturers, providing impressive feature list and imitation devices along the lines of established mobile phone manufacturers. While these do have IMEI numbers, be wary of such devices as they have the same low shelf life and bad design quality of the Chinese mobile phones. 

In fact, although the mobile phones have an Indian local brand on the packaging and the casing, these mobile phones are still produced in China and imported into India. So the “Indian Brand” is nothing but rehashed versions of the Chinese Mobile phones. The official mechanism for converting an illegal, IMEI less device into a legal one has ended in the month of December itself, and despite what local advertisers or service providers might tell you, there is now no official way to get an IMEI number to your phone if it already does not have one. The best thing to do in case you own such a device is to trash it, and pick up a legitimate model with a legal IMEI code.