12/01/2018 – 1:04pm
Some readers may remember from a while back Nokia used to have a feature phone brand dubbed “Asha”; the devices were highly affordable and particularly aimed at developing markets, though were available in developed markets also. The Asha range, despite being feature phones rather than smartphones, did feature touch displays and a selection of online services, or apps if you like, such as Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter.
Why are we taking this trip down memory lane? Well, new details have emerged which show that HMD Global, the company which is spearheading Nokia’s revival by producing Android smartphones under its name, has trademarked the Asha brand once again.
Of course this suggests that HMD Global could have intentions to revive the Asha product in some shape or form. The trademark was filed with the EU Intellectual Property Office, however, there’s some indication that we won’t be seeing “smart” feature phones this time round, as the trademark specifically mentions the Asha name will be used for smartphones.
One possiblity is the Asha brand could see very affordable Nokia Android smartphones made as part of Google’s Android Go project – an offshoot of Android Oreo designed for affordable, entry-level phones with a wink-wink-nudge-nudge once again at developing markets. This is just speculation on our part, however, but some in-development Android Go handsets will allegedly retail for as little as $32, which is quite competetive with what Asha phones used to cost at launch.
Nokia/HMD have been rumoured to be producing an Android Go phone already, previously dubbed the Nokia 1, could this hit the market with Asha branding?
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