Nokia used its MWC 2014 launch to unveil the Nokia X, X+ and XL Android smartphones, as well as the Nokia 220 (the most affordable internet-ready phone at €29) and super-cheap Asha 230.
The big news at Nokia’s MWC 2014 press launch was the new and much-leaked Nokia X smartphone family, three handsets (the Nokia X, Nokia X+ and Nokia XL) which run Android apps but also replace Google’s cloud services with Microsoft’s offerings. However, Nokia also took the opportunity to launch its new Nokia 220, the most affordable 2G internet-ready phone, and the also-affordable Asha 230 handset.
Nokia X, X+ and XL
In true Nokia style, the Nokia X, X+ and XL mono-body phones boast bold colours (including bright green, cyan, yellow, black and white), with the X and X+ coming in at 4-inches, and the XL packing a 5-inch display. The main difference between the four-inchers is you get more memory and a bundled SD card in the Nokia X+, else they’re basically the same handset, while Nokia XL is a 5-inch IPS model with a 5-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and a 2-megapixel front facing camera.
The Nokia XL in all of its glory
These phones are built on the AOSP (Android Open Source Platform) so not every Android app will be compatible to begin with. However, Android apps can be converted to work with the Nokia X, X+ and XL in just a few hours using the SDK. Nokia’s app store also links to partner stores such as Yandex, giving you some extra options. It’s Android Jim, but not as we know it.
Here Maps and MixRadio are included too as standard, along with OneDrive in place of Google’s cloud services. The aim is to bring Microsoft’s cloud services to Android users, a market that until now was untapped. It’s a smart move.
The Nokia X, X+ and XL smartphones will appear at €89, €99 and €109 (£73.50, £81.70 and £90) respectively, and will be available soon with developing markets snagging it first. Nokia was also keen to point out that the X range will remain cheaper than the Lumia phobe family going forward, even as the Lumia smartphones drop in price.
The Nokia 220 is just €29 (£23.90) and is Nokia’s latest budget candybar phone. You get 2G internet access (no 3G or WiFi) so this perhaps isn’t the best introduction to the mobile web. The Nokia 220 boasts a durable and bold design, including a dust-and-splash-proof keyboard, and a colourful 2.4-inch screen.
Facebook and Twitter apps come packed in as standard, along with our great mate Bing search. There are single and dual-SIM variants, and a basic 2-megapixel camera too.
Nokia Asha 230
Nokia’s Asha 230 is the most affordable Asha to date at €45 (£37.15), aimed at people moving on from feature phones.
Double tap the screen to wake it up, and you’ll find the same Fastlane interface found on the Nokia X range. There are a handful of fun and unique features, such as the ability to create your own wallpaper.
The Asha 230 is available now. From April, all Asha devices will get an update including Microsoft OneDrive and free MixRadio.