The Empire (Nokia) Strikes Back with Asha

Nokia has announced the launch of a new line of 3G capable smartphones. Christened Asha (‘hope’ in Hindi), the phones are aimed at emerging economies (read India). India, where Nokia currently outsells the iPhone by a ration of 1:18, represents a huge market and opportunity, with its current 866 million mobile connections and growing smartphone sales.

The Asha line of phones will start at a price point of rupees 4000 (~$80). This will make internet access a possibility for millions of people in India, thus helping to bridge the digital divide. With such an aggressive pricing strategy, Nokia hopes to attract value-conscious customers and thus hit the sweet-spot between cheaper mass-market phones (where is currently dominates) and high margin smartphones.

The Asha 303 has a touchscreen, a QWERTY keyboard, 3.2 mp camera and will cost ~8000 rupees.

The Asha 300 (touchscreen and numeric keyboard) will cost ~6000 rupees and have a 5 mp camera .

The Asha 201 (dual sim) and Asha 200 will cost around 4000 rupees.

Read more at Nokia introduces Asha, new lineup of phones for emerging markets – TNW and Nokia’s Asha has potential to bring the Internet to the masses in Asia.