Nokia Asha platform sets new benchmark for sub-100USD smartphones

Telecom Lead India: The new Nokia Asha platform delivers developers a consistent quality application experience in the world’s fastest growing smartphone category, Nokia said after unveiling the platform as well as Nokia Asha 501, the first smartphone built for the new platform.

Nokia Asha 501 unveiled, to be available from Airtel by the end of Q2

Developers who write applications for the Nokia Asha 501 will reach all smartphones based on the new Asha platform without having to re-write code.

Nokia expects to sell 100 million of the new generation Asha smartphones over the coming years, beginning with the Nokia Asha 501.

Marco Argenti, head of Developer Experiences at Nokia, said, “Consumers expect quality apps at every price point. With the new Asha platform, developers will be incentivized to deliver those quality apps, previously found only on high-end smartphones, thanks to unprecedented volumes and reach opportunities through one distribution channel and a single platform.”

Many of the most popular applications are already available or in development for the Nokia Asha platform, including CNN, eBuddy, ESPN, Facebook, Foursquare, Line, LinkedIn, Nimbuzz, Pictelligent, The Weather Channel, Twitter, WeChat, World of Red Bull and games from Electronic Arts, Gameloft, Indiagames, Namco-Bandai and Reliance Games. WhatsApp and other key partners continue to explore new Asha.

Developers will also get easy-to-use development tools and more ways to sell and promote apps, including the new Nokia In-App Payment tool.

The new Nokia Asha Software Development Kit 1.0 supports the development, testing, packaging and deployment of Java apps on the Nokia Asha platform. The tool set includes a Web Development Environment (WDE), an integrated development environment (IDE) that developers can use to create and edit their Nokia Asha web apps; Web Inspector to help developers to debug and inspect elements in their web apps; and a new Web Designer Tool for creating great user experience for their web apps.

Nokia also announced the new Nokia In-App Payment tool, designed to make it easier for developers to sell content from within their apps. It provides a simple and secure purchase experience for consumers and transparent payments for developers. Nokia In-App Payment will also be available for existing Asha and Series 40 phones, such as the Nokia 301. Nokia will release a public beta of Nokia In-App Payment in the coming weeks.

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