Microsoft unveils a new phone — and it’s not what you’d expect

By: Madeleine Dean
2 minute read

Microsoft unveiled a new phone, and it’s not the long-awaited Surface Phone. The tech giant launched the Nokia 216, an entry-level feature phone that focuses on three elements: apps, music, and selfies. This announcement is particularly surprising being that Microsoft preiously sold its feature phone business to a subsidiary of Foxconn.

We all know that Microsoft can sometimes be full of surprises, but nobody expected the company would release another feature phone. The new Nokia 216 is a basic phone with an even more basic price tag: $37. It sports a 2.4-inch QVGA display, two 0.3 MP front and rear cameras, runs the Series 30 OS and supports the Opera mini browser.

Microsoft’s official description of the phone suggests Nokia 216 is an entertainment monster:

The new Nokia 216 combines great entertainment features and modern online experiences with an instantly recognizable and familiar user experience. The 2.4″ screen is great for internet browsing, taking and viewing pictures, playing videos and gaming. […]
Share your selfies and important moments with friends and family through Facebook1. But the fun doesn’t stop there: we’ve also included one free Gameloft game every month for a year.

In reality, Nokia 216 is a basic phone, and you should buy it only if you’re looking to do three things: make phone calls, send SMS, and not worry about battery life.

It is still surprising that Microsoft went back in time with this vintage Nokia 216 in a world where all the major players focus on delivering top-notch, modern terminals, but a move that will do well for it in countries like India where feature phones are still prevalent exactly because of their prices.

What’s your take on Microsoft’s move? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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