Nokia has announced the release of its cheapest touchscreen smartphone yet, the 5230, simultaneously in India and in Finland, showing the importance of developing countries in Nokia's plans.
The mid-range model 5230 adopts the same candybar format introduced by the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic. It comes with a 3.2-inch resistive touchscreen display (still showing 640x360 pixels) with a full screen QWERTY keyboard and handwriting recognition.
It packs HSDPA connectivity as well as a 2-megapixel camera, A-GPS, pre-loaded OVI Store, Nokia's new Contacts bar, Bluetooth 2.0, a microSD card slot (up to 16GB), a headphone jack and up to 33 hours playback time; note that there's no WiFi
The smartphone is expected to be sold for 149 Euros in Europe with the Comes with Music version adding another 110 Euros to the price. These prices are for SIM-free versions, which means that Pay as you go versions should be less than quoted price.
Those looking for pay monthly deals can expect to pay around £15 or less for the 5230 given that there are a number of deals for the 5800 under the £20. No launch date has been announced in the UK but we can safely assume it will be out before Christmas.
The 5230 will come in a range of colours, runs the Symbian S60 OS and the bundled OVI Maps is said to include "aerial images, 3D landmarks for over 200 cities and terrain map views for pedestrian and drive navigation".
Nokia has been very silent when it comes to its unlimited Comes with Music scheme. The 5800 Xpressmusic was the smartphone that was expected to launch that revolution but we've yet to see anything significant from Nokia. Maybe they're planning something big to coincide with the X-factor series.