Solana Weighs Demand for Saga Phones After Sellout Amid BONK Boom

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Solana Weighs Demand for Saga Phones After Sellout Amid BONK Boom
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Solana Saga smartphones are suddenly selling like hotcakes, apparently, after crypto traders realized that they came with an airdrop of BONK meme coins valued at more than the cost of the hardware. But with the full production run about to be tapped out, it’s fair to ask, will Solana Labs produce more devices—or even make a next-generation phone?

For now, Solana Labs—the startup that comprises the network’s founders—is keeping the door open, saying that it will assess both demand and developer interest in building apps for the Saga ecosystem before committing to any next step.

“We’re extremely excited by this surge in momentum and interest in Saga,” a representative told Decrypt. “Right now, our priority is to continue listening to our community so that we can understand what this demand looks like, both now and in the future, and assess what comes next.”

The representative declined to elaborate further on what level of demand from the community would be needed for Solana Labs to push ahead with manufacturing more devices.

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“In the meantime, we’re eager to see additional submissions to the Solana dApp store,” the representative added. “Web3 developers are building great apps, and our hope is to continue to make Saga their portal into this loyal and committed community.”

The Solana Saga launched in April, delivering a high-end Android smartphone with deeper and more accessible crypto integrations than your average mass-market device. But it debuted in the heart of a bear market at a $999 price, and did not appear to generate much enthusiasm outside of the core group of Solana die-hards.

Solana Labs dropped the price to $599 in August, but the future of the Saga and Solana’s budding mobile ecosystem remained unclear. Data suggested that only a few thousand devices may have been sold in the first several months.

But this week, Solana Labs says that sales have spiked. All of the devices produced for the U.S. market were sold out as of early Friday, and European devices are apparently selling fast. The Solana Labs representative confirmed to Decrypt that 20,000 Saga phones were ever produced, confirming a stat that co-founder Raj Gokal shared Thursday on Twitter.

Anyone who bought the Solana Saga can claim an airdrop of 30 million BONK meme tokens, which has surged dramatically in value in recent weeks—up 755% over the past month. That stash is now valued at $830, or more than the current price of the phone itself. Whether it maintains that level is not guaranteed, but crypto users are taking the plunge on the Saga.

“If you didn’t get a [Solana] Saga in the U.S. before they sold out… stay tuned. More to come,” Gokal tweeted early Friday.

But for now, Solana Labs is keeping mum on what that tease might ultimately entail and is using the renewed momentum around the Saga—and the Solana ecosystem broadly—to try to encourage developers to embrace the mobile opportunity and try to help break up the grasp that Apple, Google, and other giants have on the mobile space.

“Once developers start releasing crypto-incentivized apps to all Saga users, it should kickstart the flywheel,” Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko tweeted Friday. “Users interested in crypto incentives will adopt the phone, giving developers a concentrated distribution channel filled with users seeking those incentives, and all without any app fees.”

“I think we might have just overcome the first hurdle,” he concluded. “But there’s still a tremendous amount of work to be done.”

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

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