Nokia and China Unicom jointly launched the Nokia Lumia 520 in Hangzhou , China yesterday.
Nokia’s cheapest WP8 Lumia yet will be selling for 1,298 Yuan ($206) and will be compatible with China Unicom’s new 3.5 G network, which offers download speeds of up to 21 MB/sec.
”With the fastest 3G network in China, we will expand business and market share through more cooperation with overseas brands, like Nokia,” said Zhou Youmeng, China Unicom’s marketing director.
China Unicom, China’s second largest network, expects to boost its 3G phone sales to 90 million this year, a 50% increase as it rolls out its faster network to more than 330 cities now.
The company will support the network with the release of a number of 3.5 G handsets, including the Nokia Lumia 720, which should also hit the carrier for around 2499 Yuan.
Both the Nokia 520 and 720, in their TD-SCDMA 520T and 720T variants, are also heading to China Mobile, China’s largest carrier, where they will retail for around the same price.
Nokia’s Chinese range can be seen here.
There is some indication that China is already one of the biggest markets for Windows Phone, with AdDuplex noting the country had 13% of Windows Phone usage, vs only 14% for US.
With the influx of new Windows Phones this trend is likely to continue. HTC has announced that both the HTC 8X and HTC 8S will be released in Mid-December and, a bit like the US, the handset will also be widely available on the countries major carriers, with variants becoming available on China Unicom (WCDMA ), China Telecom (CDMA2000 ) and China Mobile (TD-SCDMA ).
Pricing has not been revealed yet.
Huang Guoqiang, director of Nokia China has posted in the Chinese microblogging service that the Nokia Lumia 920 TD-SCDMA version will be launching on China Mobile, Chinaâ€™s largest carrier with more than 680 million subscribers, close to 70% of the countryâ€™s subscribers.
The support is made possible by the Qualcomm MSM8690/8260A chip which does support China Mobile’s TD-SCDMA standard.
China Mobile has still not decided to offer the iPhone, including the iPhone 5.
Not wanting to be left out, Sun Yi, an executive from China Telecom, with more than 200 million mobile phone subscribers, said while they will not be getting the Nokia Lumia 920 they will in fact be releasing Windows Phone 8 handsets from other OEMs such as HTC and Samsung.
No specific time scale was released, but hopefully with direct chipset support it will be sooner rather than later.
WPDang reports that China Telecomâ€™s new line-up has been released, and that it includes 3 new Windows Phones.
According to the list Chinaâ€™s second largest carrier and the only carrier of the iPhone in China, is definitely also making a move to Windows Phone 7.
The CDMA carrier will be offering the Samsung Minuet (likely similar to the Samsung Omnia M), Nokia Lumia 719c and Nokia Lumia 610c.
WPDang notes that the ZTE Mimosa, the CDMA version of the Orbit is still expected to launch on China Telecom at some point, leaving the carrier with a pretty extensive list of Windows Phones in the biggest phone market in world.
Nokiaâ€™s finances are not doing too well, with a massive drop in sales and market share in some of their strongest traditional markets like China.
The company is looking at ramping up their Windows Phone 7 range to compensate for rapidly flagging Symbian sales
The CDMA Nokia Lumia 800c launched on China Telecom about 2 weeks ago to large crowds and queues, but of course that does not really tell us how well the smartphone is selling there.
Queues for the Nokia Lumia 800c launch in China
Reader HH has however tipped us of to a sales chart on China Telecomâ€™s website showing the handset is pretty well positioned, just behind the wildly popular Apple iPhone 4S.
Hopefully by adding the Nokia Lumia 610 at a much lower price to their Chinese range they will have more than an isolated handset doing well, but closer to a full range which can make up the volume missing from Symbianâ€™s demise.
Thanks HH for the tip.
WPDang.com reports the Nokia Lumia 800 will be exclusive to China Telecom for 30 days. According to WPDang such deals are extremely rare in China, with most phones being sold unlocked and carrier-free. Even Nokiaâ€™s own stores will not be selling the handset during this period.
The last handset to benefit from such a deal was the iPhone, and hopefully this will boost the handsetâ€™s feeling of exclusivity and increase its mass appeal.
The official Lumia launch event will be in Beijing on March 28th 2012.
Chinese publication CNMO reports that the CDMA version of the Nokia Lumia 800c on China Telecom has had a price cut even before it hit the market.
The handset was supposed to launch for 4,899 Yuan ($774 ) but will now be sold for 3,899 Yuan (about $616) without a contract.
The carrier is also increasing its subsidies for the handset on contract, and will now be offered for as low as 19 Yuan ($3) on contract.
With the Nokia brand very strong in China and prices so low the handset should do pretty well, boosting Nokia and Windows Phones sales significantly in Q2 2012.
The smartphone is expected to hit shelves on the 28th March 2012.
According to ChinaTechNews.com, a China Telecom representative from its mobile device management center has revealed that several Nokia Windows Phones will be coming to the network, including the Nokia Lumia 800.
The 3 new handsets will become available between March and April 2012 on the Chinese CDMA network, spearheaded by a CDMA Nokia Lumia 800.
The release will purportedly also include cheaper Nokia Windows Phones with prices around $160 (CNY1,000) unlocked. Handsets will however be available with device subsidies.
The representative said that the introduction of Nokia Lumia products is the company’s key measure in the mobile device customization sector, following the lowering of package threshold for CDMA version iPhone 4S and the launch of the new youth-oriented Flying Young brand.
China Telecom is a state-owned carrier in China and the third biggest in the country. The Chinese market itself has just exceeded 1 billion subscribers, making it by far the largest in the world.
click for larger versions
Mobile-Review has spotted the Phillips D908 Windows Mobile 6.5 Professional smartphone.
The device, which comes in at a chunky 14.8 mm, claims to have 1 GB RAM and 2 GM flash storage, and features a 3.2 inch WVGA touch screen display, GSM and CDMA/EV-DO connectivity, Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth 2.1, 5MP camera and MicroSD card support (up to 32GB). The specs appear on Microsoftâ€™s Chinese website here.
The smartphone is expected to launch soon on Chinaâ€™s biggest network, China Telecom.
ZTE has announced the release of two Windows Mobile 6.5 handsets in China this month.
Lin Qiang, the general manager of the smartphone division at ZTE the X60 will be going to China Unicom while the X70 will be going to China Telecom He noted that the phones will be priced more competitively than the iPhone, which is set to arrive soon on the smaller China Mobile.
He also revealed that more than half of ZTE’s handset R&D resources are being trained towards smartphone development, with ZTE set to increase the 8 Windows Mobile handsets they currently have on the market to 13 next year.
Read more at Marbridge Consulting here.
When we last wrote about the Motorola A3300 there was some question whether this device is fake, given the companyâ€™s new Android obsession. These arguments can now be laid to rest, as the device has now been officially announced. Sina.com has published some official press photos of the EVDO device heading for the Chinese market and has revealed the specs.
The Windows Mobile 6.1 device has a 3.2 inch WQVGA screen, 5 megapixel camera, 3.5 mm headphone jack, (unusually for China) WIFI, GPS and the now mandatory G-sensor, all wrapped in what appears to be a relatively svelte package.
The device is heading for the China Telecom network and appears to be destined to me marketed as primarily a music phone. Hopefully this will include good access to music downloads and a customized player.
Read more at Sina.com here.
The Twin is set to feature a 2.8-inch screen which is either VGA or QVGA, both CDMA and GSM and a 3.1 megapixel camera.
The device has also been rumoured to be HTCâ€™s first official Windows Mobile 6.5 device and destined for China Telecom, although with WM 6.5 likely delayed all the way to October one does wonder whether this has pushed back HTCâ€™s release schedule.
ZTE is Chinaâ€™s biggest cell phone manufacturer, and is aiming to become one of the big 3 in the next 3 years. Last week they launched 4 3G Windows Mobile smartphones, part of a set of 10 it aims to sell this year.
3G has just become available in China after a long bidding process, and at present it is still only a nascent market with slow adoption.
ZTE aims to sell 1 million smartphones by the end of this year despite predictions of decline in global handset sales, said Lin Qiang, general manager of ZTE Smartphone Production Line.
4 handsets have been released, the ZTE N61 and ZTE X60 are tailored for China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd while the ZTE X70 and ZTE N72 are targeted at competing carrier China Telecom Corp. The QWERTY devices are business focussed, while the full-touch ones are more for fashionistas.
Some ZTE handsets have been showing up in the west, such as the O2 XDA Zest in UK earlier this year.