Nokia Corp is adopting a new and logical strategy, obviously to boost sales of its smartphone business. The mobile phone manufacturer has announced plans to launch its cheaper handset Lumia 525 before the end of the year. It could be the start of Nokia’s push into the low-end market segment.
The company intends to initially release the low-end product in strategic markets like China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Russia, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Russia. In the first quarter of 2014, the device would then be launched in other markets like Australia, New Zealand, Khazakstan, Ukraine, and several parts of Africa.
To give an idea about how affordable Lumia 525 would be, Nokia disclosed that the new smartphone would cost 1099 yuan ($180) in China, before subsidies and taxes. Although Nokia intends to still launch more smartphones at cheaper price tags, this handset could indicate the start of a strategy to make Windows Phone more affordable and more popular.
Nokia clarified that Lumia 525 is not a successor but a variant of Lumia 520. Lumia 525 is expected to help make Windows Phone more accessible especially to a greater number of users. It is aimed at bringing most of the impressive features of Lumia 520 at cheaper cost.
Lumia 525 basically has all the features of Lumia 520, except size of RAM, which is 1GB in the older phone and 512MB in the new one. The new smartphone would also come with a 4-inch display, 800 x 480-pixel resolution, a dual core 1GHz processor, and a 5-megapixel camera. It also features a microSD card slot for memory expansion and integrated memory of 8GB.
This early, hopes are higher for Lumia 525. It has a big shoe to fill. Lumia 520 was cited for helping Lumia sales grow by 19% (8.8 million units) in the third quarter compared to sales in the second quarter. The expanded distribution is expected to make Lumia 525 become more popular.
The smartphone market, which is seen as nearing saturation, is gearing towards the sub-$200 territory. This could be attributed to Google Inc’s recent efforts. To be particular, the giant technology firm recently launched its Moto G smartphone, which is priced around that level.
Nokia wants to push itself to the limits. The company said it is now prioritizing the development and launch of much cheaper Windows Phone devices. It now aims to release smartphones that would cost below $100 without any subscription contract in the currently competitive market.
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