Nokia and T-Mobile USA yesterday announced the upcoming availability of the Windows Phone 7-based Nokia Lumia 710. The result of Nokia’s partnership with Microsoft, the impending launch of the Lumia 710 with T-Mobile could represent the re-emergence of Nokia in the U.S. market.
The HSPA+-enabled Lumia 710 comes in a white or black finish and features a 3.7-inch ClearBlack WVGA touch display, 1.4 GHz Snapdragon processor and 5-megapixel camera.
The 710 is a step down from the high-end Lumia 800, also a WP7 phone, which was recently released in Europe. It’s expected to be available Jan. 11 for $50 on T-Mobile with a two-year contract.
Cole Brodman, chief marketing officer for T-Mobile, said in a statement that the carrier expects WP7 to play a more prominent role its lineup and marketing efforts in 2012.
Nokia has long been criticized for its lack of participation in the United States, particularly with regards to it lack of carrier relationships, which is why Kevin Burden, vice president and practice director of ABI’s mobile devices group, says it’s a bit puzzling that the company would make its re-entry here with a smaller carrier and lower-tier phone.
Burden speculates that Nokia still may be hashing out the details of a deal with AT&T to bring the higher-end Lumia 800 to market here in the United States sometime in the first quarter of 2012.
Still, could the $50 retail price for the Lumia 710 grab some market share? Burden is hesitant, expressing confusion at Nokia’s overall plan.
“It just seems like an odd strategy, when you don’t have a presence in the U.S. market, to come in, when everyone is trying to buy high-end phones, with a lower-tier version of your new product line. It just doesn’t seem to be the kind of move to make people aspire to buy a new Nokia phone.”