Will Nokia make an Android phone? This is a question that every smartphone user has been asking for the past three years at least. When Nokia decided to retire Symbian, Android seemed like the logical OS they would adopt. Symbian was functionally very similar to Android, and Android already had a strong foothold in the market. Nokia however had different plans. They chose Windows Phone 7 as their OS of choice, writing off Android completely. And thus began an era of stunningly beautiful looking phones running an OS that nobody really wanted.
We can debate for hours whether Nokia should have sided with Windows Phone exclusively or whether they should have tried their hands at an Android phone. A quick look at their sales figures would put an end to the debate, but there was more to the Nokia-Microsoft deal than what the public knew. Anyway, that is a story for a different time.
Earlier this year at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Nokia shocked the smartphone world by announcing the Nokia X. A Nokia phone powered by Android? No way could that be possible after Nokia had already confirmed their acquisition deal with Microsoft. There were rumours and murmurs regarding the birth of Nokia X. Some said it was under development for over a year. Some claimed it was Nokia’s plan B in case they decided to part ways with Windows Phone. We may never get a concrete answer to this.
What really matters at the end of the day is that the Nokia X is real, it’s released, and we have it with us today. It is not the Nokia-Android marriage we would have hoped. Nokia X aims to bridge the gap between the Asha and Lumia 5xx lineup of phones. So it’s pretty low end. But it still has us very excited. A low end phone can still give us an idea of what a high end one would have looked like.
Between the Asha lineup and the Lumia 520 is a pretty narrow gap. At the price point of Nokia X, you will rarely find any Android phone from a mainstream OEM. But the phone will face stiff competition from regional brands such as Q-Mobile and Micromax, which run Google Android as opposed to AOSP Android on Nokia X (more on that later). Let us see if Nokia has created a compelling phone here.