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Nokia Asha 308 and Asha 309

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 Nokia Asha 308 Available now
25th September 2012

The Nokia Asha 308 and Asha 309 are two closely related touchscreen feature phones priced at less than €100, and are due to hit the market during Q4 2012.

The difference between the two handsets is straightforward - the Asha 308 is dual-SIM device, and the Asha 309 substitutes WiFi for the second SIM slot. These are 2G devices only, but they do include a new version of the Nokia Xpress Browser which is optimised for slower connections, and of course the 309 has WiFi for use on a suitable wireless network.

These are two elegant looking devices with a 3" 240 x 400 pixel capacitive touchscreen on the front and a very basic two megapixel camera on the back. The Asha 308 and 309 are capable of video recording, but at a paltry 176 x 144 pixels at 10 fps it is probably best avoided.. although if you want, you can upload your blurrycam vids directly to YouTube.

 Nokia Asha 309 The Asha 308 and 309 have a pretty comprehensive music player plus an FM radio, although video playback options look a bit limited. There's a microSD slot with a 2GB memory card included in the standard sales package. A stereo wired headset is included in the box.

Nokia are tentatively touting the Asha 308 and 309 as smartphones, citing GfK and IDC as supporters of that category. Most industry analysts count the Series 40 powered Asha range as feature phones though, but there is no doubt that Nokia is definitely challenging low-end smartphones in terms of features.

Available applications include support for Facebook and Twitter social networks, YouTube, Nokia Life+ in selected markets, a web browser, email client and 40 free games from EA plus other applications available from the Nokia Store.

The Nokia Asha 309 offers Nokia Maps and WLAN-based network positioning, although GPS would be a nice feature to see. WLAN positioning looks at the locally available WiFi networks and can usually work out a surprisingly accurate location from that data. The Nokia Asha 308 doesn't have WiFi, so it can't use WLAN positioning.. however, the SIM slots are hot-swappable which is another nice feature to have.

 Nokia Asha 309 The 1110 mAh battery is quoted as giving up to 6 hours talktime and 21 days standby time (for the 308) and 27 days (for the 309). The Asha 308 is available in a dual-band 900 / 1800 MHz version only, the 309 is a quad-band GSM device. Both devices weigh a fraction over 100 grams and measure 110 x 54 x 13mm.

The Nokia Asha 309 will be available in black and white colours, the 308 in black and gold. Nokia say that the handsets should cost around €99 before tax and subsidy and should be out by the end of the year.

Although these two devices are primarily aimed at emerging markets, we can expect Nokia to sell quite a lot of these to prepay customers worldwide in the run-up to Christmas.

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Nokia Asha 308 at a glance

Available:

Q4 2012

Network:

GSM 900 / 1800 or
GSM 850 / 1900 (dual SIM)

Data:

GPRS + EDGE

Screen:

3.0" 240 x 400 pixels

Camera:

2 megapixels

Size:

Compact tablet smartphone

110 x 54 x 13mm / 104 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Memory card:

MicroSD

Infra-red:

No

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Yes

GPS:

No

OS:

Series 40

Battery life:

6 hours talk / 21 days standby

Nokia Asha 309 at a glance

Available:

Q4 2012

Network:

GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900

Data:

GPRS + EDGE  + WiFi

Screen:

3.0" 240 x 400 pixels

Camera:

2 megapixels

Size:

Compact tablet smartphone

110 x 54 x 13mm / 102 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Memory card:

MicroSD

Infra-red:

No

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Yes

GPS:

No

OS:

Series 40

Battery life:

6 hours talk / 27 days standby

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