Nokia’s Lumia 520 was the first, and probably the only (to date) highly successful Windows Phone device. In fact, it currently accounts for more than 30% of all phones running Microsoft’s mobile operating system. For this reason, updating it was one of the top priorities for Nokia’s Devices and Services division post-acquisition by Microsoft.
While some facts about the successor model, the Lumia 530, were leaked earlier this year, today, for the first time the phone is being officially debuted. No, its not a flagship phone in anyway, but this is very much a phone targeted to the lower end of the marker, especially in developing countries.
In terms of form, it is reasonably similar to others in the Lumia range, combining bright polycarbonate exteriors with rounded corners and a overall rugged appearance. This shell as well can be popped off and replaced with several different colors, similar to the shells of all Nokia feature phones. The front of the phone features a 4 inch 854x480 pixel LCD screen which is considerably better resolution than the 520.
Powering this system is a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 CPU backed with 512MB of RAM. One of the major strengths of the 520 as well was its battery life, and once again Nokia/Microsoft are trying to build this into the 530, with a reported 22 days of standby time.
Of course this is a budget phone, and there are notable omissions necessitated by the phone’s low price point. These include no front facing camera, and no 4G LTE support. The phone’s low RAM and small amounts of memory (4GB) could also prove problematic for serial app and game users. In addition, the phone is somewhat chunky, weighing in at 129g, rather heavy considering its plastic construction and small size.
The phone will be launched with the latest version of Windows Phone, WP8.1, and its manufacturer is keen to point out that “most major apps” are now available on the operating system. They have also been playing up some of the more popular parts of Windows Phone, including Cortana and the offline maps capability of HERE maps. Furthermore, to sweeten the deal, Microsoft is throwing in 15GB of free OneDrive cloud storage in order to boost the phone’s memory.
Whether this will be enough to make the 530 another hit for the Windows Phone platform is hard to say. Just as important to the equation is competitive pricing. If consumers feel the price is not low enough to justify the less-than-exceptional specs, than the phone will achieve limited success.
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