Nokia and Microsoft have teamed up to break Apple and Google's stranglehold over the U.S. smartphone market. AT&T will start selling the Nokia Lumia 900, running on Microsoft's software, for as little as $99.99 with a 2-year contract, starting April 8.
In a statement on Monday, AT&T announced plans to start selling the Lumia 900 for $99.99 on April 8. Meanwhile, Apple's latest iPhone - iPhone 4S - and recent handsets running Google's Android OS typically are priced $199 upwards. Can Nokia Lumia 900 pose a threat to iPhone 4S?
The pricing is aggressive, said Avi Greengart, an analyst at Teaneck, New Jersey-based research firm Current Analysis. They are hoping to use price to get people to buy a product with an operating system they aren't familiar with.
Nokia Lumia 900 Specs
The Nokia Lumia 900 packs a 1.4GHz Qualcomm APQ8055 processor, 512MB of RAM and 16GB of storage. It has a 4.3-inch AMOLED display with Corning Gorilla Glass protection, and a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels. The 8-megapixel rear camera features Carl Zeiss Lens and dual-LED flash, with a 720-pixel video capture. The front-facing camera is 1-megapixel. The Lumia 900 also supports AT&T's so-called 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) connectivity, as well as GSM 850/900/1800/1900 radio, WCDMA 850/900/1900/2100 radio, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, Stereo Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi. Furthermore, the smartphone sports ambient and proximity sensors, accelerometer, gyroscope, two microphones, Internet Explorer 9 mobile, and Windows Phone 7.5 Mango Commercial Release 2.
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iPhone 4S Specs
The slightly improved iPhone 4S marks a significant step in improving the internals of iPhone 4, while maintaining the same look and feel. It sports an enhanced iOS 5 and one of its most popular features: Siri, an intuitive personal voice assistant allowing users to vocally communicate with the iPhone instead of just barking commands. For now, Siri is exclusive to the iPhone 4S. Apple's latest smartphone has a 3.5-inch Retina display with a 640 x 960 pixels; a dual-core A5 processor, which is twice as powerful as Lumia 900's processor; and an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera capable of recording 1080-pixel videos.
The meager $99.99 price tag for the Nokia Lumia 900 comes with a two-year contract with AT&T. The carrier will offer the phone without a contract as well, but the price goes up to $449.99, according to Steven Schwadron, a spokesman for AT&T. Meanwhile, the cheapest version of the iPhone 4S retails for $199 with a 2-year contract and $649 without one.
A $100 difference in price may be tempting for many, but whether it's tempting enough to actually threaten the iPhone 4S is debatable. Also, let's not forget that AT&T is also offering several quality smartphones in the $99 price point, such as the older iPhone 4 and the Android-running Motorola Atrix 2, which are as good as Lumia 900.
Meanwhile, back in February, Betanews started a Will You Buy? poll on the Nokia Lumia 900. The results are in and according to the results, one-quarter of respondents reported they had already pre-ordered or were about to, 42 percent said they planned to purchase it within the next three months, while only 18 percent said they don't plan on buying the device. At that time, the Nokia Lumia 900 was expected to sell for $199.
(reported by Alexandra Burlacu, edited by Surojit Chatterjee)