Asha 501 is a dual-SIM phone equipped with a 3-inch capacitive QVGA touchscreen, removable casing and weighs just 98 grams. During the official launch in May it was revealed that Asha 501 will be available in over 90 countries and through 60 operators.
The new member of the Asha range of feature phones that provides a smartphone like experience is equipped with a 3.2-megapixel rear camera, Wi-Fi, FM radio, Bluetooth, expandable storage, multiple colour casing, etc.
In a bid to entice more customers, Nokia has partnered with Airtel and Facebook to offer data-free access to standalone Facebook app as well as the mobile site m.facebook.com.
Nokia has been struggling lately with its sales but, has managed to post tremendous increase in consumer demand for apps for its Asha smartphones following the huge success of the entire range of phones. Nokia is planning to sell somewhere around 100 million Asha smartphones over the coming years and Asha 501 is the first one of those phones.
The Finnish handset giant had once ruled the Indian mobile handset space with over 80% market share but, lost its marketshare to companies like Samsung, Apple alongside other local vendors and budget-friendly Chinese smartphones to as low as 20%. Asha’s success has increased Nokia’s market share by about 2 percent points to 22%.
Stephen Elop, Nokia’s CEO, has also accepted lately that Nokia has been trailing behind Samsung and Apple and has a lot of catching up to do. “In absolute terms, we are at lower levels, and we are starting from zero in those price bands. We have to build that. Samsung and Apple have been building that for a number of years in the Indian market and we have to do that,” Elop said.