Surprisingly, the focus of Nokia’s press conference at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona wasn’t a Lumia. In fact, the Lumia line didn’t feature much at all during the presentation. It did get a couple of name drops when Nokia announced the new X family of smartphones.
The Nokia X, X+ and XL all feature a tile-like interface inspired by the Lumia line, which runs on Windows Phone. However, these are Nokia’s first Android-powered devices. They’re probably not as Android as you might like, though, as Nokia has used the Android Open Source Project to create its own custom version of the Android software stack called Nokia X. This means these devices can run Android apps, but you won’t be able to access the Google Play Store.
The Nokia X is based on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 processor cocked to 1 GHz and features 512 MB of RAM with 4 GB of on board storage (expandable to 32 GB via MicroSD. The WVGA display measures 4 inches in size and has an 800 x 480 resolution for 233 ppi. There’s also a 3-megapixel camera, dual-SIM support (MicroSIM), WiFi, and Bluetooth 3.0. The 1500 mAh battery is good for about 10.5 hours of talk time on 3G or 17 days of stand by. The Nokia X+ is basically the same phone, but it has some extra RAM (768 MB) and comes with a 4 GB memory card on top of the 4 GB integrated storage.
The Nokia XL is the bigger brother but it’s not really ‘XL’ as far as today’s phones are concerned. It packs a 5-inch display (again, WVGA, 800 x 480) with 187 ppi, the same dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor clocked to 1 GHz, 768 MB of RAM, 4 GB of internal storage (expandable to 32 GB via MicroSD), a 5-megapixel camera in the back, a 2-megapixel camera in the front, dual-SIM support, Bluetooth 3.0, WiFi and a 2,000 mAh battery that’s good for 13 hours of 3G talk time or 30 days of dual-SIM stand by.
Given the specs, you don’t need us to tell you that these aren’t high-end phones. Indeed, despite the Android-based OS, Nokia is pitching the X family as a way to offer consumers affordable access to Microsoft services. The Nokia X will cost €89 and is available immediately in Asia-Pacific, Europe, India, Latin America, and the Middle East and Africa. The Nokia X+ and Nokia XL are coming in Q2 and will cost €99 and €109 respectively.
Stay tuned for hands on from the show floor. We can’t wait to sink our teeth into this new Nokia-flavored Android.