The Nokia X Android Phone is Real, and it Has a Buddy in the Nokia X+

By Gerald Lynch on at

At this point, given months of speculation, it's hardly much of a surprise, but Nokia has indeed got an Android phone for you. The Nokia X is confirmed, marking a notable split between Nokia's Windows Phone and now Android interests. We bet Microsoft are really happy this morning.

Two different handsets, the Nokia X and Nokia X+, will be available (alongside an XL phablet). Both run Android applications with unique Nokia experiences and Microsoft services. Any standard Android APK file can be sideloaded onto the new Nokia X handsets too.

Looking like Lumias, each have a 4-inch touchscreen, while the Nokia X+ comes with added storage and a microSD card. It's a heavily modified version of Android, including Nokia's "Fastlane UI". There's a tile-based homescreen, with elements of live information, with apps in coloured strips. A long press lets you re-organise the tiles, as well resize them, while adding a photo album tile automatically pulls your snaps to the fore.

Fastlane UI is like a shortcuts homescreen, letting you quickly access settings like alarms and playback controls for music. Notifications will also set here. Classic Android, given a Nokia spin, with a side swipe in instead of dragging from the top. Dragging from the top from a home screen does however give access to Wi-Fi settings, and the ability to switch between the phone's dual-screens.

Hundreds of thousands of Android applications will be available from the off, with Microsoft services like Skype and OneDrive -- "Not Google's cloud," Nokia boss Stephen Elop was keen to stress. Buyers get one month of free Skype calls, plus an addition 10GB of free OneDrive cloud storage.

And they are cheap -- the Nokia X is launching immediately for €89 (around £73), while the Nokia X+ will land in Q2 for €99, around £81.