Nokia this morning at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, announced three Android-powered smartphones — the Nokia X, X+ and XL.
Make no mistake, folks — while these phones are based on the Android Open Source Project, the look, feel and purpose serve Nokia and Microsoft. This is in no way your typical Android device.
In fact, after spending a few brief minutes with the Nokia XL — the largest of the bunch at 5 inches — there's no real telltale sign that what you're using isn't just some low-end Windows Phone device. The hardware isn't of the same class as Lumia, in specs or in feel. The Lumia 1020 I have just feels better. Period. The user interface felt a bit sluggish — tough to tell if that was trade-show wonk, or if it's just slow.
For our purposes, it'll be interesting to see how many Android app developers hop on board. SwiftKey, for example, is in the Nokia store already. We'll have to explore that more thoroughly as we go on.
It's also important to remember that Nokia X isn't really targeted at any of us either. CEO Stephen Elop made a big point of specifying "growth markets" — which can mean whatever Nokia wants but really means emerging markets that aren't already saturated with smartphones and need something low-cost.
To that end, the Nokia X, X+ and XL cost €89, €99 and €109, respectively. These phones are about the price points, not what OS they're running.
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