Nokia returned to the smartphone market in December 2016 under new leadership from Finnish company HMD Global. The new line of Nokias, the 150 and 150 Dual SIM, will sell for about $26, according to an HMD press release. As of press time, it’s unclear, and perhaps unlikely, whether the phones will be sold in the United States.
Jeff Kagan, who is an independent telecommunications and wireless analyst, says Nokia has a tough row to hoe. Nokia, like fellow onetime cellphone-market dominators BlackBerry and Motorola, is “yesterday’s brand name,” Kagan says, and it would seem to need some “magic powder” to attract new consumers.
The specifications of the new candy-bar-style Nokias—a 2.4-inch display that’s integrated with a conventional keypad and a 2.5G network—are among the most minimal in the marketplace, which seemingly accounts for the low price. Furthermore, consumers might have to think twice about whether they should buy a smartphone from a startup company that will compete with numerous stalwarts. If the new Nokia venture fails, consumers could end up with a device that wouldn’t be updated and wouldn’t be backed by technical support.