Microsoft South Africa has introduced its first sub-R1 000 smartphone. The dual-Sim Lumia 430 will cost R999 on prepaid, targeting the largest and fastest-growing segment in the smartphone market.
The Lumia 430 has a 4-inch WVGA screen, a 1,2GHz dual-core processor paired with 1GB of RAM, along with a 2-megapixel main camera. There’s also a VGA front camera, 1 500mAh battery, 8GB of storage (expandable by 128GB through an SD card) and support for 3G networks.
The phone, which is available in South Africa in black and orange, can be updated to Windows 10 Mobile when the new software is released later this year.
The Lumia 430 is being sold through Cell C. Bigger rivals MTN and Vodacom do not range dual-Sim phones in South Africa. A single-Sim variant, the Lumia 435, was introduced in March at a recommended retail price of R1 149.
Microsoft South Africa GM Shaun du Randt said dual-Sim devices are “not a huge part” of the South African mobile market, unlike the East Africa and Indian markets where there is huge demand for such phones, but this is starting to change.
At the same time, Microsoft has announced it is introducing the new Lumia 640 and 640 XL midrange smartphones in South Africa.
The Lumia 640 has a quad-core 1,2GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of flash storage, a five-inch 720p display, 4G/LTE, 2 500mAh battery, 8-megapixel main camera and 1-megapixel front-facing camera. It’s available in four colours — black, white, orange and blue — and will retail for between R2 699 and R2 799, Microsoft said. A single-Sim LTE version costs from R199/month on contract, while a dual-Sim variant will fetch R219/month.
The more powerful 640 XL “phablet”, with a 5,7-inch 720p display, is only available on contract for now from R269/month. Prepaid prices are likely to follow later this year — users should expect to pay from about R3 500, depending on the behaviour of the rand.
The XL has a 13-megapixel auto-focusing camera with Zeiss optics. The front-facing camera is also substantially better than the 640’s, at five megapixels. There’s 1GB of RAM paired with a 1,2GHz quad-core processor and a 3 000mAh battery.
Both the Lumia 640 and 640 XL, which can be upgraded to the upcoming Windows 10, come with Microsoft Office 365 Personal for 12 months. This licence can be used to install software across a range of devices, including PCs and Macs as well as Android phones and tablets. The offer includes 1TB of OneDrive cloud storage. — © 2015 NewsCentral Media