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ORLANDO, USA – At the wireless show (CTIA) in Orlando, FL, we are taking one step closer to delivering on the promise of delivering millions of Symbian smartphones by launching the Nokia Astound with T-Mobile USA. What’s it all about? Read on to find out what you need to know about the Nokia Astound.

As the smartphone market has grown, it’s become increasingly difficult to imagine life without access to thousands of apps at our fingertips. For smartphone users, apps like Angry Birds, Shazam, and Foursquare aren’t just a convenience — they are integral parts of our day-to-day.

Until now, the barrier to entry into planet smartphone has been unnecessarily high, which inspired us to launch the Nokia Astound. Designed to offer offering value without compromise, the Astound will be available exclusively at T-Mobile USA, beginning on April 6, for $79.99 on contract. To those that have been hesitant to dive into the world of smartphones, the wait is over.

The Nokia Astound makes it easy to stay connected and keep up with your social networks like Facebook and Twitter from anywhere. You can download and play games and other apps from the Ovi Store, stream music, and easily capture and instantly share memories with an 8-megapixel camera and HD video recording, and on-device editing software — all of the tools you need to live an on-the-go entertainment lifestyle.

T-Mobile customers will have access to the world’s most comprehensive location experience, Ovi Maps, with free turn-by-turn drive and walk navigation in almost 100 countries worldwide and a cool app within called ‘Own Voice’ which lets you personalize that nagging voice telling you where to go! And let’s not forget the real-time traffic information, safety camera alerts, speed limit warnings and visibility of parking and service stations that can help get you to your destination smoothly.

We’re also very excited to tell you about some of the latest updates to Symbian that will be available first on the Nokia Astound. This includes a new browser and portrait QWERTY keyboard, as well as split screen functionality to let you see the input area when typing which we know many of you will be excited about. These improvements will propagate to other devices in the new Symbian range shortly.

Many people are keen to be sure their electronics have top-flight sustainability credentials. We kept this in mind when developing the Astound. It is the industry’s first device to feature bio paints (which are made from renewable plant materials), is made with recyclable metals and glass, and has eco-friendly apps to help reduce unnecessary energy usage. Hopefully, the Astound is the first of many phones to tackle this issue.

As for the specs, the Nokia Astound has a 3.5-inch AMOLED display with a tough damage-resistant glass window, is 10.5 mm thin and provides tactile feedback on the touch display. It sports 8GB of mass memory, supports up to a 32GB MicroSD memory card, giving a total of 40GB of storage for all of your music, pictures and movies. Speaking of music — stereo audio is delivered through the 3.5mm AV connector and there’s an FM transmitter built in allowing you to listen through car stereo and stereo using Bluetooth.

If you’re at CTIA this week, come check out the Nokia Astound and other Nokia products and services in person in the Nokia booth, #1626.