To tap emerging telecom markets, Nokia brings Asha 308 and 309

Telecom Lead India: Mobile phone maker Nokia has introduced two more cost effective touch phones aimed at emerging telecom markets.

According to, Nokia, which hasn’t made a profit in five quarters because of slumping smartphone sales, said adding features such as a faster Web browser and access to social networking sites to basic phones will win over first-time users and increase the chances of them buying more expensive phones in the future.

Unlike its smartphone division, Nokia’s basic-phone business is profitable and unit sales are increasing. The Espoo, Finland-based company lifted its share of the basic-phone market to 35 percent last quarter, the highest in two years.

Apple iPhone5 is becoming a threat to both Samsung and Nokia. In smartphone business, Nokia lost market share to Apple and Samsung. The strategy to launch cost effective phones is seen as Nokia’s vision to retain its top ranking as the number one mobile phone maker by volume market share.

Nokia on Tuesday said the dual SIM Nokia Asha 308 and single SIM Nokia Asha 309 give consumers fast web access at low cost.

To create this smarter Internet experience, Nokia released a new version of Nokia Xpress Browser, which enables up to 90 percent more efficient mobile browsing and faster access to rich web applications compared to conventional browsers.

The new devices offer a fluid swipe user interface and an open environment for third-party application development.

“Our innovative Asha Touch family of devices is designed for people who want a great smartphone experience with lower running costs,” said Timo Toikkanen, executive vice president, Mobile Phones, Nokia.

The price for the Nokia Asha 308 and Nokia Asha 309 will be about $99, excluding taxes and subsidies, with shipping expected to start in the fourth quarter 2012.

“Nokia’s Asha Touch family delivers all the core smartphone experiences, and with the new software developer kit, provides ever-increasing flexibility for developers to build compelling new experiences for consumers,” said Will Stofega, Mobile Phone Program Director, IDC.

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