As was rumored, at the Mobile Web Congress 2014, Nokia released 3 devices running Android.
The timing is worth taking note of as the Nokia’s handset business is moving over to Microsoft as soon as the pre-requisite processes are concluded. Microsoft of course is behind the Windows Phone OS for smartphones but that didn’t stop Nokiafrom going ahead with the release.
These Nokia X handsets are the X, the X+ and the XL and they all have the iconic Lumia-stlye design. It seems Nokia didn’t want to stay out of the affordable (Android) smartphone market. They have had success with their non-smartphone platform with the Asha devices as well as the lower end Nokia Lumia’s that outsell the iPhone in a lot of emerging markets.
Interesting also is that these devices are running a forked version of Android similar to what Amazon does with the Kindle Fire line.
A FORKED VERSION OF ANDROID?
It means it is running Android Open Source Project or (AOSP) instead of an Android version you might find on other OEMS (Samsung, HTC, LG etc).
What this means is instead of using the Android version that Google have refined (Kitkat, Jelly bean etc.) the device runs a more “pure” Android experience. Where it’s built off the same source-code that the mainstream Android uses, but instead the OEM (in this case Nokia) are free to further develop the software on their own; since it’s a TRUE open source platform.
The main disadvantage of running a forked version of Android is that it doesn’t have access to the Google Play Store and Google’s bundled apps. The OEM will therefore have to build their own store and populate it with apps. Nokia thinks this won’t be a problem and promises great developer support. They also claim that 75% of applications are already Nokia X ready.
It’s also a good thing Android allows for side-loading applications but this is not an ideal case.
The Nokia X is the entry level android device, with a 4-inch IPS LCD screen, 512MB RAM and a 3-megapixel camera. It will be available in green, black, white, yellow, cyan and red for €89 (Approximately Shs. 10,500/= before tax, Shs. 12,000/= after VAT)
The Nokia X+ is identical to the X but offers 768MB RAM and a 4GB MicroSD card is included in the box. It comes in the same colours as the Nokia X. It will retail at €99 (Approximately Shs. 11,500/= before tax, Shs. 13,300/= after VAT)
The Nokia XL packs a 5-inch screen, 768MB RAM, the free MicroSD card and it has both a 2-megapixel front-facing camera for Skype calls, as well as a 5-megapixel rear camera with autofocus and flash. The same colours are available as for the Nokia X and X+, except bright orange replaces the red with this model. The XL will retail at €109 (Approximately Shs. 13,000/= before tax, Shs. 15,000/= after VAT)
The following table illustrates the differences between the models.
|Nokia X||Nokia X+||Nokia XL|
|Screen||4-inch IPS LCD, 800 x 480px||4-inch IPS LCD, 800 x 480px||5-inch IPS LCD, 800 x 480px|
|Storage||Up to 32GBMicroSD||Up to 32GBMicroSD; 4GB card included||Up to 32GBMicroSD; 4GB card included|
|Rear camera||3-megapixel fixed focus||3-megapixel fixed focus||5-megapixel with autofocus and flash|
|Processor||8225 Qualcomm Snapdragon1GHz Dual Core||8225 Qualcomm Snapdragon1GHz Dual Core||8225 Qualcomm Snapdragon1GHz Dual Core|
|Networks||ESGM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900WCDMA 900 / 2100||ESGM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900WCDMA 900 / 2100||ESGM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900WCDMA 900 / 2100|
|Dimensions||115.5 x 63 x 10.4mm||115.5 x 63 x 10.4mm||141.3 x 77.7 x 10.8mm|
|Standby time||2G = Up to 28.5 days3G = Up to 22 days||2G = Up to 28.5 days3G = Up to 22 days||2G = Up to 41 days3G = Up to 26 days|
|Talk time||2G = Up to 13.3 hours3G = Up to 10.5 hours||2G = Up to 13.3 hours3G = Up to 10.5 hours||2G = Up to 16 hours3G = Up to 13 hours|
The Nokia X will be available to buy immediately in Asia Pacific, Europe, India, Latin America, the Middle-East and Africa. The Nokia X+ and XL are expected to be available from Q2 2014. The prices quoted do not include any local taxes or operator subsidies.
The immediate availability and budget pricing is a good combination to have these devices in a lot of hands.