To help revive its growth in the smartphone market, the Finnish company, Nokia unveiled two new cell phones this week – the Asha 205 and 206. Different from its other Asha phones, these additions include a new Bluetooth quick-sharing feature called Nokia Slam.
The Slam feature is an exclusive new service which can share data, files and multimedia among Bluetooth-enabled devices, without the need to pair the devices, even if other users don’t have Slam.
This feature, however, does not currently work with iOS or Windows Phone, but that may not be the case forever.
Even though these new Asha handsets are Qwerty devices (not touchscreen devices), are not 3G (only offer a 2G connection), lack smartphone credentials and have a low-quality camera, they do offer many of the important features consumers look for in an affordable cell phone: SMS, MMS, e-mail, push e-mail and IM.
Both new Asha handsets will have an easy-to-use platform and application user interface – running Nokia's Series 40 software – and feature an e-mail client (to feature WhatsApp-integration) and chat services from Google, Microsoft and Yahoo.
Nokia Asha 205. Image via fonearena
The Asha 205 and 206 phones, tailored primarily for Internet use and social networking, feature WAP 2.0/xHTML, HTML and Adobe Flash Lite. They will run the Nokia Xpress browser, which incorporates the firm's cloud technology to reduce data consumption – by up to 90 percent, Nokia said.
Dubbed the ultimate social phone, it will also contain a battery that offers 11 hours of talk-time and many more hours (up to 30) of music playtime.
These are phones that come available in single or dual SIM versions. They’ll come pre-loaded with a selection of games (offering many more to be downloaded from the Nokia store) and social networking apps, like Facebook (the Asha 205 features a dedicated Facebook button) and Twitter from the home screen.
Priced at $62 each, excluding subsidies and taxes, these new "smartphone-like" Nokia mobile phones recently introduced in the Asha family are very reasonably priced, and for that reason should be a hit once released by the end of the year.
Edited by Braden Becker