Nokia to sell cheaper phones to counter low-end rivals - sources

22 February, 2013

Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia is set to launch cheaper handset models in an attempt to fend off growing competition from Chinese rivals in the low-end market, company sources said on Friday.

The new models, due to be unveiled at the Mobile World Congress industry convention in Barcelona next week, show Nokia is expanding its focus after concentrating in the past two years on catching up with Apple and Samsung in more expensive smartphones.

The sources said Nokia will introduce cut-price mobile phones aimed at competing with the likes of Huawei and ZTE, as well as a new, lower-price model of its Lumia smartphones running on Windows Phone 8 software.

Details such as exact pricing were not available, and a company spokesman declined to comment.

The Lumia smartphone has widely been seen as a make-or-break phone for Nokia, but analysts estimate Nokia's market share in the high-margin smartphone business is still only around 5 percent.

It sold 4.4 million Lumia devices in the fourth quarter, including the new Lumia 820 and 920, which were launched in November.