Nokia Launches Lumia 530 For $149
The smartphone wars have entered a new era, with a flurry of capable handsets at cheap prices, even as the world waits for Apple’s iPhone 6.
While HTC has already launched its low-cost yet quad-core Android-powered Desire models into retail stores, Microsoft’s new Lumia 530 is due from the 1st of September, promising the “latest generation smartphone features and experiences”, an “amazing value smartphone experience” and “the same Microsoft innovations and services found in high-end Lumia smartphones”.
This includes the Start screen, now fully customisable with font sizes, background images and resizable tiles that can be “as simple or as complex as you like”, a long-lasting battery, the new personalisations and notifications bar in Windows Phone 8.1, the Swype-style Word Flow keyboard and the boldly coloured exchangeable covers similar to those available for the Lumia 630.
Steve Lewis, General Manager at Microsoft Device Sales AU/NZ said: “With high end apps, features and exceptional build quality at an amazing price, the Lumia 530 sets a new benchmark for affordable smartphones.
“The Lumia 530 builds on the momentum of the highly successful and category defining Lumia 520 and demonstrates our focus on welcoming more people to the Windows Phone ecosystem with amazing devices for work, home and play.”
While there’s only 4GB on board, a microSD expansion slot allows cards up to 128GB in size, with 15GB of additional OneDrive cloud storage at your disposal to share files between your other computers, laptops and tablets.
Microsoft is also quick to point out that a range of popular apps are available, even if app numbers are still lower than on iOS and Android, pointing to “Uber, Instagram, WhatsApp, Viber and WeChat”, alongside games such as car racer Asphalt 8″, all of which are promised to work smoothly on the “powerful quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor” – albeit only the Snapdragon 200 model running at 1.2GHz.
Even so, the latest generation of mid-range Qualcomm processors seems to be delivering great performance for the money, and with Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1 optimisations, end-users should find performance is just fine.
The screen is a pocket-friendly 4-inches in size with 854×480 resolution, there’s a 5 megapixel rear camera (but no flash or front camera), 512B of RAM, 3G HSPA+ connectivity and 13.4 hours of 2G talk time, 10 hours of 3G talk time with 22 hours of standby time.
The thickness of the Lumia is 11.7mm – much thicker than the 7.6mm of the iPhone 5s, but at the sub-$150 price, this extra girth is easily forgiven.
Microsoft also promotes its online and offline music streaming service, MixRadio, as well as the Nokia Maps app which offer downloadable apps for data-free use locally and abroad.
Apps such as Microsoft Office and Skype are pre-loaded and ready to go, as are “all the signature Lumia apps” including camera apps such as Creative Studio for editing videos and “Glam Me” which uses voice guidance to help people take selfies without looking at the screen.
The Lumia 530 will be available in a range of colours including bright orange, bright green and stylish neutrals such as dark grey and white, along with a selection of changeable shells in a variety of colours.
Available from retailers from the 1st of September and online from the 8th of September, Optus will also have a prepaid bundle available for $129.
Tech news site Recombu has had a first look of the Lumia 530 and is suitably impressed – we’ll have a full review when we get our hands on this new model.
Tech spec summary:
Model: Lumia 530
OS: Windows Phone 8.1 with Lumia Cyan
Display: 4.0″ FWVGA LCD, 854 x 480 resolution
Battery: Up-to 22hours standby, 13.4 hours 2G talktime, 10 hours of 3G talk time.
Battery capacity: 1430mAh
Connectivity: HSPA+ 21Mbps/5.76Mbps, Wi-Fi (b/g/n), BT 4.0, micro-USB
Processor: 1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200
Memory: 512MB RAM, 4GB eMMC with up to 128GB micro SD card support
Full tech specs can be seen here.