It seems incredible to us now, but just seven years ago Nokia controlled three-quarters of the smartphone market. Back when it was the industry was in its infancy, Nokia devices proved hugely popular and the Finnish manufacturer was the biggest name in the mobile industry.
Since then many huge players have recognized the potential of this sector, and Nokia’s prominence has pretty rapidly receded. But the company still views the mobile sector as its major market and isn’t ready to give up just yet.
New X Range launched in Barcelona
Thus, a Nokia Android smartphone has been in the offing for some time, and today’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona gave us the opportunity to learn about three new Nokia Android offerings. The CEO of Nokia, Stephen Elop, unveiled all three handsets at the Mobile World Congress, showing the collected audience the Nokia X, the Nokia X+, and the Nokia XL.
As the names would suggest, the Nokia XL can be considered the premium device of the three. This handset features a 5-inch IPS WVGA display, a 5-megapixel rear camera and auto-focus and a 2-megapixel front camera. The cameras also have an LED flash function.
Both the Nokia X and the Nokia X+ are somewhat smaller, featuring 4-inch displays, but the devices both feature touchscreen capabilities. The only obvious difference between these two more budget-oriented devices is that the X+ is loaded with extra memory, and also possesses expandable storage via a microSD card.
Each of these new Nokia smartphones are running off Android Open Source Project code, which will exclude them from receiving Google services. However, all of the devices will be released with pre-loaded Nokia and Microsoft services. These will apparently include Here Maps, MixRadio for music, Outlook.com email, one month of free calls on Skype, and access to cloud storage with 10GB of free OneDrive space, so there is some pretty nifty functionality included with these Nokia smartphones.
Nokia X Range to have particular social media focus
Additionally, all three devices have been set up with social media particularly in mind. This has been shown to be a growth area for Facebook in recent revenue figures, and it is expected that Twitter will look for expansion in this area as well. Thus, all of the new Nokia handsets will have Facebook and Twitter installed as standard, along with other popular apps such as Vine, BBM, and Plants vs Zombies. Additionally, the existing Nokia Store will offer more apps, even if this is pretty sparsely stocked compared to some of its big rivals’ similar stores.
Nokia also revealed that they have designed the user interface for each of these new devices to coincide with their existing Lumia smartphones. It was clear from the presentation given by Nokia in Barcelona that they wish to keep the user experience pretty uniform across all three mobiles, even if the XL+ can be viewed as the premium device.
With the most expensive of these devices going on sale at $150, Nokia will hope to find a mass market niche to re-establish themselves in the smartphone market. Whether or not this will be possible in an extremely competitive marketplace is highly debatable.