Nokia X launched in India for Rs 8,599, brings Android apps to Nokia smartphones

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As expected, moments back Nokia launched the X smartphone in India. The first of the three X-series smartphones, which were unveiled at MWC last month, the X runs on a forked version of Android and is priced at Rs 8,599. For those waiting for the device, Nokia announced that it will be available from today onwards.

One of the main talking points on the Nokia X is the software, which is not surprising, considering it is the first device from the Finnish company to run on an Android OS. But this Android is not kind we are used to. It essentially is an Android Open Source Project (AOSP) version, which doesn’t have Google Play store or any Google services like Gmail, Google Maps and so on. Instead, Nokia is offering its own Android store that the company claims has most of the top apps and has replaced all of Google’s services with either its own or Microsoft’s services.

Developers can easily port their apps to Nokia’s OS and so users will have access to nearly all of the new and famous apps. All the developer needs to ensure is that these apps don’t use any of Google’s APIs — location, authentication and in-app payments. Instead they will need to replace them with Nokia’s APIs. The Finnish company has also included support for third-party apps stores like Yandex from where one can download most Android apps. Nokia says almost 75 percent of Android apps on Play Store should work on it.

The UI too is not what we are used to and instead has been designed to look similar to Windows Phone, complete with Live Tiles on the homepage. Instead of multi-tasking, Nokia gives Fastlane, which we have earlier seen on Asha phones.

As far as the specifications are concerned, the Nokia X sports a 4-inch WVGA (800×480 pixels) LCD display with a pixel density of 233ppi and is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor clocked at 1GHz and paired with 512MB of RAM. You also get 4GB of internal storage that can be expanded up to 32GB using a microSD card, and as an introductory offer, Microsoft is also offering buyers 1GB of free OneDrive storage.

On the photography front, you get a 3-megapixel camera at the back with fixed focus, f/2.8 aperture and 4X digital zoom. Making sure everything is clicking inside is a 1,500mAh battery, which the company claims is good enough for 10.5 hours of talktime and 17 days on standby mode. Other features include FM Radio and connectivity options like dual-SIM card slots, 3G support, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Nokia is billing the X as a device for first-time smartphone converts and on paper, the specifications are purely entry-level. But from the little time we got to spend with the device at the MWC, we can vouch for the hardware quality and it does feel polished and premium.

Along with local brands, the Nokia X will also have to compete against entry-level smartphones from tier-one brands like the Sony Xperia E1 Dual, Samsung Galaxy S Duos 2 and the HTC Desire X.

The Xperia E1 Dual, which launched in India last week, is more expensive with a price tag of Rs 10,000. At this price, you get the same display, similar processor, storage options, cameras and a bigger battery (1,700mAh). The Galaxy S Duos 2 too is a bit more expensive than the X with a price tag of Rs 9,580. At this price you get a processor with slightly better clockspeed (1.2GHz), better RAM (768MB) and better resolution rear camera (5-megapixel) and also a secondary VGA camera at the front.

Finally, the Desire X, which is the most expensive of the lot with a price tag of Rs 10,999. For the extra buck though, you get the same display, same processor, better RAM (768MB), same storage, a better rear camera (5-megapixel) and a slightly better battery (1,650mAh).

FEATURES

NOKIA X

SONY XPERIA E1 DUAL

SAMSUNG GALAXY S DUOS 2

HTC Desire X

DISPLAY

4-inch WVGA 4-inch WVGA 4-inch WVGA 4-inch WVGA

PROCESSOR

1GHz Snapdragon S4 dual-core 1.2GHz Snapdragon 200 dual-core 1.2GHz dual-core 1GHz Snapdragon dual-core

RAM

512MB 512MB 768MB 768MB

STORAGE

4GB expandable 4GB expandable 4GB expandable 4GB expandable

CAMERAS

3-megapixel 3-megapixel 5-megapixel/VGA 5-megapixel

BATTERY

1,500mAh 1,700mAh 1,500mAh 1,650mAh

OS

Nokia X OS 4.3 Jelly Bean 4.2 Jelly Bean 4.1 Jelly Bean

PRICE

Rs 8,599 Rs 10,000 Rs 9,580 Rs 10,999