Feeds

Nokia to launch low-cost Android phone this month – report

Bargain-basement mobe to debut in Barcelona

The essential guide to IT transformation

Nokia is preparing to release its first-ever smartphone running Google's Android OS, sources claim.

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, the Finnish firm plans to unveil the device at this year's Mobile World Congress conference, which takes place in Barcelona on February 24-27.

The move comes as Microsoft inches closer to completing its €5.44bn acquisition of Nokia, which was first announced in September 2013.

Even before being gobbled up by Redmond, Nokia has lately relied exclusively on Windows Phone to power its smartphones, on the insistence of its CEO, former Microsoft man Stephen Elop.

But the WSJ's unnamed sources say the beleaguered former phone leader now plans to introduce a low-cost Android device to its lineup as a way of retaining customers on the low end of the market, where feature phones are gradually being edged out by entry-level smartphones.

Windows Phone is too resource-intensive to run on cheap hardware, these sources claim, which is why Nokia is turning to Android for its new, bargain-priced kit.

Not that you'll necessarily know the new device is an Android phone at first glance. Earlier reports have revealed what are purportedly leaked screenshots of Nokia's Android skin, and its UI appears heavily modified, with more than a passing similarity to Windows Phone.

In addition, the WSJ's sources claim that Nokia's Android device "won't promote some of the key Google-developed features" – which may mean it won't come preloaded with the Google Play store and its related services.

If that's the case, it would mean Nokia is taking a similar approach to Amazon, which bases its Kindle tablets on a custom fork of Android and bundles its own app store in place of Google Play.

It's not yet clear which countries Nokia plans to target with its Android device, but earlier reports have suggested that it wants to sell them in emerging markets such as India and China, while sticking to its Windows Phone–powered Lumia handsets in more affluent markets.

El Reg asked both Microsoft and Nokia for confirmation of the plan, but neither would comment. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?