GLOBAL – In selected markets, we’re launching a new smartphone today – the Nokia Oro. It’s a premium brand product that incorporates 18-carat gold plating, a sapphire crystal and leather from one of Scotland’s finest Caledonian herds.
Inside, it reaches the same high grade as Nokia’s other recent smartphones. It’s Symbian-based, with the latest Symbian Anna update. There’s pentaband radio connectivity, up-to HSDPA 3G and WiFi. There’s a 3.5-inch AMOLED display, an 8-megapixel camera with 720p video recording and all the rest. Functionally, it’s not so different from other recent smartphones from Nokia. But that’s quite a rarity in the “premium phone” business. Normally, you’d have to choose between something that looked posh or offered the latest specs: Nokia Oro offers both.
But clearly, someone who chooses the Nokia Oro won’t be making a hard spec vs. price comparison. They’ll be more concerned about the build quality and materials.
The Nokia Oro is a device that’s clearly intended for someone who doesn’t want their mobile device to look the same as other people’s. The main markets for this sort of device are the Middle East and Russia, where they have been best-sellers for some time. Nokia’s General Manager for Russia, Gabriel Speratti, told us that, “premium products like Nokia Oro have always been best sellers in Russia. We have a large number of users who are looking for products with a build quality and superior materials that attest to their success and social standing. In some areas, possession of such premium products is the passport to being taken seriously.”
Materials Designer Robert Lihou told us:
“Our aim was to use the best materials for the purpose. It’s coated with 18-carat gold which has been made scratch-resistant. The leather is from premium Scottish stock. That’s a real sapphire crystal in the home key, which makes it eight times sturdier than glass.”
Nokia Oro will start selling in selected countries across the Europe, Eastern Europe, China and the Middle East in Q3 2011. Before local taxes and operator subsidies (neither of which you’re likely to be too concerned about if you’re a customer for this device), it will cost upwards of EUR 800.