Thanks to the dozens of device manufacturers making budget Android-powered handsets, the low-end of the smartphone market is already incredibly competitive, but Microsoft wants to play, too. Cue it’s pair of new, low-cost Lumia devices, the Lumia 435 and the Lumia 532.
Microsoft says the Lumia 435 is expected to sell for around €69 (R950) while the Lumia 532 will retail for an estimated €79 (R1100). Both devices are powered by Windows Phone 8.1 and are aimed at those consumers looking to upgrade from a feature phone to a smartphone without breaking the bank.
The Lumia 532 is an updated version of the Lumia 530 and Lumia 535 – previously Microsoft’s cheapest Lumia devices – and includes a quad-core 1.2GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage and a microSD slot that supports microSD cards up to 128GB. It also includes a 5MP rear camera and a VGA (640×480 pixel) front-facing camera.
While the 532 won’t support wireless charging like higher-end Lumia devices it does offer a removeable 1560mAh battery. Microsoft is also releasing dual-SIM versions of both the Lumia 532 and 435. Both versions of both devices offer a 4-inch 800×480 pixel touch display.
The Lumia 435 is powered by a dual-core 1.2GHz processor and the same memory and microSD expansion option as the 532. The 435 includes a 2MP rear-facing camera and a VGA front-facing camera. Both handsets will be available in bright orange or bright green and in more sedate options of white or black.
Both the 435 and the 532 offer built-in Skype integration, support for Microsoft’s virtual assistance Cortana (its version of Apple’s Siri) and come with the full suites of Microsoft Office for Windows Phone preinstalled. Microsoft will also offer 30GB of free OneDrive cloud storage to consumers who purchase either of the new devices.
“When we launched the first Lumia devices over three years ago, we said we were committed to bringing devices to as many people and price points as possible,” says Jo Harlow, Microsoft’s corporate VP for phones at Microsoft.
“With the Lumia 435 and Lumia 532, we’ve realised our goal of creating the most affordable Lumia devices to date, opening up the opportunity to reach those people who are buying a smartphone for the very first time.”
The new handsets are expected to land in South Africa next month.