Nokia Debuts New Touchscreen Asha Phone

Nokia Asha 501

Don’t worry, you haven’t missed Nokia’s big Lumia reveal, that’s still coming on 14 May. However, the company is busy with other new hardware too, and following the recent announcement of the Asha 210, it has revealed another new Asha phone – the Asha 501.

This time, instead of a QWERTY keyboard, the phone has a full touchscreen, continuing on from the introduction of the form factor to the range last year. The screen measures 3-inches and has a resolution of 320 x 240, which fits with the budget nature of the Asha line-up. There’s no word on the processor, but don’t expect it to be anything more than a single-core chip, however, the 501 does has a 3.2 megapixel camera, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 3.0, a headphone jack, and 2G connectivity.

While other Asha phones have traditionally used the Series 40 operating system, the Asha 501 sees the introduction of the Asha platform. This custom software is designed to make the phone easier to use, and has two main screens – Home and Fastlane. With Home, you get a list of icons and apps, while Fastlane organises the apps and features you use the most into one handy list. Nokia is encouraging developers to write apps for the Asha platform, and there are many already available.

There is a single-SIM and a dual-SIM version of the Asha 501, and they both come in several bright colours, although if you feel like a change, the rear cover is removable so swapping it for another colour is easy. Nokia says the Asha 501 will go on sale in 90 countries around the world, with shipments starting in June. It has been given a $99 price tag, which is around £70.

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