Finnish handset major Nokia on Tuesday unveiled a new smartphone in its Asha series in the sub-$100 (Rs. 5,500) phone category to tap rising demand from young and aspiring consumers across developing regions.
Asha 310 comes with Wi-Fi connectivity, video streaming, dual SIM option, fast internet connectivity, pre-loaded apps for Facebook, Twitter and Nokia maps.
The new touch smartphone is expected to be made available by March-end in India. The phones would be manufactured both in India and China.
D Shivakumar, the head of Nokia's operations across India, Middle East and Africa, said that a huge consumer base across these regions aspires to own a smart phone and is fast graduating from an ordinary feature phone to fancy smartphones.
"These aspiring young consumers wish to have all the goodies of a $400 (Rs. 21,500 phone ) at a much cheaper price as they cannot afford to shell out huge money. The Asha series from Nokia actually fulfils their desire."
Over last one year since the company launched smart phones in the Asha series, it has sold around 16 million smart phones and a "sizeable" chunk of these phones were sold in India, Middle East as well as Africa.
Asha in Hindi means hope, and Nokia has positioned smart phones under Asha series as an aspirational smart phone for the not-so-wealthy middle class consumers.
These phones are priced between Rs. 3,500 and Rs. 8,700. In the premium segment, Nokia offers its high-end Lumia smartphones. These handsets range between Rs. 10,000 and Rs. 38,000.
The writer's travel and stay were sponsored by Nokia