Nokia launches a lower-cost line of Asha phones aimed at reaching into emerging markets with new technology.
LONDON-In addition to announcing two
new smartphones based on Microsoft's Windows Phone
operating system this week,
Nokia also launched four mobile feature phones that offer stylish design, a
rich social experience and location-aware technology.
At the Nokia World 2011
Nokia unveiled the Nokia Asha 300, Nokia Asha 303, Nokia Asha 200 and Nokia
Asha 201. Nokia officials said these devices blur the line between smartphones
and feature phones, offering QWERTY and touch-screen experiences, combined with
fast and easy access to the Internet, integrated social networking, messaging
and world-class applications from the Nokia Store.
In his keynote at Nokia World, Stephen
Elop, president and CEO of Nokia, said one of his company's goals is to tap
into "the next billion"-that is the next billion people to connect to the
Internet via mobile devices. As such, Elop said Nokia continues its mission to
deliver high-quality, stylish devices that provide the best access to social
networks, the Internet and information. He said the next billion users want
access to innovations such as easy-to-use dual SIM, local services and content,
and third-party apps, all with a superior user experience for which Nokia mobile
phones are known.
Derived from Hindi-meaning "hope"-Asha
signifies Nokia's focus on positive user experiences and connecting millions of
people to new opportunities that help them reach their aspirations, Elop said.
The Asha mobile phone family includes the
, which is designed with metallic finishes and combines a large,
2.6-inch capacitive touch screen with a high-quality QWERTY keypad. The Asha
303 is built with Internet and social network ease in mind.
The device harnesses a 1GHz engine, 3G
and wireless LAN (WLAN) to deliver a fast Internet experience, Nokia said. Social
networks, email and IM are at the center of the experience, easily accessible
from the home screen. The Asha 303 is powered by the cloud-based Nokia Browser,
which by compressing the Web by up to 90 percent provides higher speeds and
more affordable access to the Internet.
Entertainment and applications are also
a core part of the Nokia Asha 303 offering. Angry Birds Lite, the popular
mobile game, comes preinstalled, together with support for other globally
relevant applications such as Facebook Chat, Whatsapp messaging and the latest
release of Nokia Maps for Series 40 (in selected markets). The estimated retail
price for the Asha 303 will be approximately 115 euros ($161), excluding taxes
and subsidies. It is expected to start shipping in the fourth quarter of 2011.
is a touch device that also offers the convenience of a keypad. And
it too has a 1GHz processor and 3G, as well as Angry Birds Lite preloaded.
Users have fast access to messaging, email and instant messaging from the home
screen and can swipe to access apps, music or games from the Nokia Store.
The Nokia Asha 300 comes with a 5-megapixel
camera, a music player, FM radio and Bluetooth connectivity, and it can handle
memory cards up to 32GB. The estimated retail price for the Nokia Asha 300
will be about 85 euros ($119), excluding taxes and subsidies. It is expected to
start shipping in the fourth quarter of 2011.
is Nokia's latest dual-SIM phone with Easy Swap functionality,
allowing users to easily change their second SIM without switching the device
off. It is a QWERTY phone designed to meet the needs of young, urban consumers
who want to constantly stay in touch. The Asha 200 features integrated social
networking, email and IM, adding RenRen, Orkut and Flickr support. The phone
can carry thousands of songs with support for 32GB memory cards and provides a
battery for 52 hours of playback time. The estimated retail price for the Nokia
Asha 200 will be about 60 euros ($84) excluding taxes and subsidies. It is
expected to start shipping in the fourth quarter of 2011.
The single-SIM version of the Nokia
Asha 200, the Nokia
, also is targeted at young consumers who want to stay socially
connected, are price conscious and like listening to music. The Nokia Asha 201
has great music features, including a high-performing loudspeaker, enhanced
stereo FM radio and ringtone tuning. The Asha 201 also supports push email as
well as the popular Whatsapp messaging app. The estimated retail price for the
Nokia Asha 201 will be about 60 euros ($84). It is expected to start shipping
in the first quarter of 2012.