According to the Wall Street Journal, Nokia’s Android phone, Nokia X, will be announced at Mobile World Congress later this month. Though it in no way poses a threat to Apple and Samsung, the so-called ‘Normady‘ phone could be the first of many moves to shut down the remaining vestiges of Symbian in favour of another open-source, yet much more powerful mobile operating system.
Though Nokia already sells a number of low-cost Windows Phones, with the Lumia 520 approaching that coveted $99 price point, it makes sense that it would fork Android and use Microsoft’s cloud services, along with a curated set of ported Android apps, to offer dumbphone users a chance to upgrade to a smartphone at an extremely low cost.
While Nokia X, or whatever the company happens to call Normady, will certainly not be released in North America, it may also have a very limited impact on the smartphone market. The project has likely long been in Nokia’s playbook, even before it was purchased by Microsoft; its parent company may shut down the venture as soon as it is absorbed into the company.
Nevertheless, we’ll be awaiting news of further Android plans by Nokia, as the company is likely to market this as they would any other product. And because it forks Android, Google won’t see any revenue from its various cloud services that display advertising.