Microsoft may be dropping Android and doubling down on its Nokia Lumia phones running Windows — but that isn't the company's only mobile focus. Nokia is simultaneously looking at customers in emerging markets who don't need internet service.
Microsoft-owned Nokia has unveiled its cheapest handset yet, the $NZ30 Nokia 130, aimed primarily at Africa and the Middle East.
The 130 comes in single and dual-SIM card varieties (so it can work with two phone numbers), but does not have internet capabilities. Instead, it's optimised for playing music and videos. The handset boasts up to 46 hours of music playback time and 16 hours of video playback. It can remain on standby without needing to charge for a month. Music and videos can be stored locally on the device with an SD card (the phone itself can store up to 32 GB).
The Nokia 130 also comes equipped with an FM radio, flashlight and 1.8-inch LCD display.
Microsoft understands the importance of hooking customers in developing markets, particularly Africa, Microsoft's Jo Harlow told Recode. “Microsoft doesn’t have any other project that can reach these consumers,” Harlow said.
“These consumers will create a Microsoft account and become part of the Microsoft ecosystem.”
If this sounds familiar, it's because Microsoft used similar logic to push its short-lived Nokia X lineup of low-cost smartphones running a custom version of Android. But new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella announced earlier this summer the company would be abandoning its Android efforts, instead refocusing on its flagship Lumia line.
It's not clear when the Nokia 130 will go on sale, but it will be available in Africa, the Middle East and a handful of European countries.
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