Nokia unveiled the the Nokia Asha 501 in India on May 9th, the first device on the new Asha platform that is an upgrade from Series 40 OS as we previously knew it. Asha platform is a blend of Series 40 and Smarterphone OS that was acquired by Nokia some time ago to improve the experience on the low end devices. Nokia also pushed in a new user interface called fast lane, that functions via gestures, just like Meego on the Nokia N9 does.
Now this being the first of uni-button devices in the lower end platform and with quite much it could do, this was bound to get a lot of attention. That is how I got myself one of these from Nokia to play with and feel what the user experiences. The swipe based Asha device from Nokia.
Asha 501 Specifications:
- 3 inch capacitive touch screen TFT Display, 240 x 320 pixels, 133ppi QVGA
- 128MB internal storage expandable to 32GB via microSD, comes with 4GB microSD
- 64 Mb RAM
- Single SIM and dual SIM – microSIM
- Asha Software Platform 1.0
- 2G network, two bands, GSM
- 3.2MP camera, 2048 x 1536
- Removable back shells, with colours Bright Red, Bright Green, White, Black, CYan and Yellow
- Dimensions: 99.2 x 58 x 12.1mm
- Weight: 98 grams
- FM Radio
- 1200mAh battery (17hrs talktime, 48hrs standby
- Availability in June in 90 countries
- Price: KES 7,999
Below is my “unboxing” where we have photos of the device, what you get inside and how it’s packaged.
The Nokia Asha 501 is a compact build device that comes with changeable shells to give Bright Red, Bright Green, White, Black, Cyan and Yellow colour options for the user. the front is all screen and black, so the shell really is the determinant of how the phone will look like. Nokia looks like they are getting rid of the mini-SIM compatibility since even with this one they put in microSIM use.
The Asha 501 has a single button on the front, and everything else design-wise is on the shell. This has the mouth piece only at the bottom, nothing on the left, pin charger port at the top with the micro-USB slot and 3.5 mm jack slot for earphones. On the right we have the volume rocker and power button. The back has the unlock latch ant at the top we have the camera with a very bold Nokia text. the design of the camera externals is like that on the high er end Lumia devices.
Inside the box we have the earphones, battery, pin charger and user manuals. noticeably missing is a micro-USB cable, which the device uses and has a slot for.
The device can stand on its own.
This is the dual-SIM version and it has hot-swap microSIM slot on the side when you open the back cover. The microSD slot which comes bundled with a 4GB microSD also doesn’t require you to have the battery removed.
On the device itself, we have the pull to reveal notifications area, just like on Android or on other Asha phones. There you get WiFi , Bluetooth, Data connection and sound toggles. If connected to WiFI you will see the SSID of the WiFi you are connected to.
I am yet to get used to FastLane, the swipe based UI , but after a few double taps and swipes, I know where to find apps that you had open previously and the home-screen.
Below are the photos of the device, drink in them. I got the black one, so no flashy colours here. 🙁