Nokia today took aim at emerging markets with a pair of dual-SIM phones and a bicycle-powered cell phone charger. The announcements came at a press conference in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi.
The latest Cseries mobile phones include three new products under the Nokia C1 name, as well as the new dual-SIM Nokia C2, which will follow at the end of the fourth quarter of 2010. At the same event, Nokia also took the wraps off the Nokia Bicycle Charger Kit, an alternative charging solution built especially for people with limited access to electricity.
The most affordable of the Nokia C1s is priced at $37 before taxes and subsidies and is the first Nokia mobile phone to feature a 2-in-1 double SIM solution.
"By simply holding down a key, people are able to switch between SIM cards. This enables them to take advantage of reduced call rates, flexibility when traveling from one country to another, or helps with sharing a phone within a family and still use their own SIM," said Alex Lambeek, vice president at Nokia, in a statement.
The Nokia C2 features a dual SIM with dual standby capability. The C2 also can keep both SIM cards active, meaning calls and text messages can come to either number while the phone is on. The first SIM card on the Nokia C2 sits underneath the battery and the second is "hot-swappable," a feature unique to Nokia which means it can be removed and inserted when the phone is on.
Where available, the Nokia C2 also offers a range of information covering healthcare, agriculture, education and entertainment via Nokia's Ovi Life Tools, as well as the email account for the developing world, Ovi Mail.
As a complement to the new phones, Nokia thought to add a bicycle charger, which consists of a charger and dynamo, as well as a holder to secure the phone to the bike. The kit will be available before the end of the year in selected retailers and Nokia online and will sell for about $18. When the kit is installed, the dynamo - a small electrical generator - uses the movement of the wheels to charge the handset through the standard 2mm charging jack used in most Nokia mobile phones.
"Bicycles are the most widespread means of transport in many markets around the world, so this is just one more benefit to be gained from an activity people are already doing," Lambeek said.