Microsoft’s Nokia 215 Smartphone Costs Just $29, Targets Emerging Markets

Microsoft today announced its Nokia 215, the company's most affordable Internet-ready phone to date. The entry level device carries a price tag of just $29 before taxes and subsidies, though don't get too excited -- this little handset is headed for emerging markets and is unlikely to ever see a launch on U.S. soil.

This is part of Microsoft's plan to mobilize users who might not otherwise be able to afford and own a smartphone. It's intended for first-time mobile phone buyers, as well as anyone in select territories looking for a cheap secondary handset.
Nokia Lumia 215

There will be two versions of the device, the second of which totes dual SIM slots. Both come pre-installed with Facebook and Messenger with instant notifications.

"Browsing the web is super-easy, thanks to Opera Mini Browser and Bing Search. And don’t take a chance on the weather. Get the latest weather conditions using MSN Weather and see accurate hourly or 5 day weather forecasts, wherever you are," Microsoft said in a blog post.

These aren't high-powered devices by any means. The Nokia 215 and 215 Dual SIM both sport a 2.4-inch display (320x240, 166 ppi), 8MB of RAM, 0.3MP camera, microSD card slot, and a few other odds and ends. Microsoft rates the standby time at 29 days, along 20 hours of talk time on 2G and up to 50 hours of music playback.

Both handsets will roll out first in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Europe in the first quarter of 2015.