Microsoft this morning has announced the Lumia 530, a new super-budget handset that it says is the first Lumia for “sub 100 Euros” – so that should be less than about £80.
As you might expect, a budget phone isn’t going to set the world on fire spec-wise, but it still appears to be pretty decent for the price. The Windows 8.1 device is powered by a quadcore 1.2ghz Snapdragon processor, 512mb of RAM and 4GB of storage. Plus all of the usual connectivity options. The camera – there appears to be only one – will be 5MP, and it will be able to shoot video at 854×480 resolution (FWVGA). It’ll also come in either single or dual SIM models – the latter being great for anyone planning on committing adultery or dealing drugs.
Microsoft is keen to emphasise that because the phone runs Windows 8.1, it will be able to access all of Microsoft’s various services including Cortana, its Siri-like personal assistant. And to sweeten the deal, the company is apparently throwing in 15GB of free cloud storage (presumably with Microsoft OneDrive).
To go with the phone, Microsoft has also announced the Bang mini speaker by Coloud, which will cost €19 (about £15) on top of the price of the phone. Interestingly, it appears that it will be possible to “daisy chain” Bang speakers together, to create one even bigger speaker.
Both the phone and the speaker look set to be available in August.
What’s perhaps most interesting is what we can read into the phone about Microsoft’s plans. Whilst it is perhaps too early to tell if the Lumia 530 is the first manifestation of CEO Satya Nadella’s big changes, it does seem that this entry level Lumia could be a replacement for the recently scrapped Nokia X. Similarly, it is interesting to see the Nokia name still stamped on the device – though perhaps tellingly the word “Nokia” is nowhere to be seen in any of the press materials.