Although they were first unveiled in October 2011, Nokia’s Asha range of mobile phones truly came of age in 2012.
Throughout the year, new Nokia Asha models were released and they were quick to find a loyal and devoted following, as illustrated in an ambitious, globetrotting video series called ‘Me & My Asha.’
As another example of the progress that was made in 2012, global market research companies and analysts such as GfK designated Asha Touch devices as full smartphones.
As a new year approaches, we look back on the last 12 months in the Asha family, revisit the new models that were introduced and remind you of some of the stories we published.
Making a splash in Barcelona
The first new Asha models of 2012 were launched in February at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
The Nokia Asha 302 was a premium QWERTY phone for young professionals who need to communicate for business, and love to stay in touch with family and friends.
The Nokia Asha 203, and its dual-SIM variant, the Nokia Asha 202 both featured alphanumeric keypads – and touchscreens! They were also the phones that introduced the EA Games partnership that would prove to be another Asha highlight in 2012.
This is how we reported on the launch of these new Asha mobile phones.
A touch of inspiration
The summer saw the debut of the Asha Touch range, namely the Nokia Asha 305, Asha 306 and Asha 311.
They were affordable touch screen smartphones with a quick and responsive user interface, cloud-accelerated Internet browser, with easy access to social networks, that were great for mobile gaming and included essential tools such as Nokia Maps.
One month after the Asha Touch smartphones were launched, Conversations spoke to Saulo Passos, Nokia’s communications director for mobile phones, about how they were helping to connect the next billion people and get them online to a smarter Internet.
Apps for Asha
I am a proud owner of a Nokia Asha 311 and this is how I looked back on my first week with the device.
As with any new gadget, the longer you spend with it, the more rewarding it becomes. As I kept on discovering new apps in the Nokia Store, this was certainly the case with my Asha 311.
In the last few months I’ve looked at location tools, Nokia Internet Radio and as well as my personal selection of essential apps, I also rounded up apps in areas as diverse as education, sports, art, travel and photo editing.
Additions to the Touch family
The final quarter of 2012 saw two new members of the Asha Touch family, the Asha 308 and Asha 309.
These two smartphones also heralded the introduction of Nokia’s new Xpress Browser, which uses cloud compression technology to make surfing the web faster whilst consuming up to 90 per cent less data.
This underlined that being connected and offering a smarter and better value Internet experience lay at the heart of all Asha Touch devices.
Asha is one… And one more
However, even then Asha wasn’t over for the year. The final model to be released was the Nokia Asha 205 in late November.
With its QWERTY keyboard, striking two-tone colour combinations, SLAM sharing technology and a dedicated Facebook button – the first ever for a Nokia device – it was the most social Asha of the lot.
Not a bad way to end the year then. Somehow, I get the feeling that 2013 is going to be just as much fun.
Updated October 1, 2015 6:35 am