Two months ago, when Microsoft introduced what was to become the last of the Nokia X series of Android low end smartphones from its new acquisition, something small but significant happened: Opera’s mobile browser became the default browser on the Nokia X. Microsoft’s other assets as part of the Nokia acquisition such as the Series 30, Series 40 and the Ashas are also following suit. Opera Mini will now be the default browser on those devices. This is after Opera and Microsoft signed a cross-licensing deal that will see the two company’s cooperation expand to include the low cost devices.
New Series 30, 40 and Nokia Asha devices will ship with Opera Mini pre-installed as the default browser while users will get notificstion on existing devices to ditch the Xpress browser they currently use for Opera Mini starting October. Nokia’s Xpress browser famous for its page compression capabilities (which Opera Mini is known for as well) will enter maintenance mode until end of next year when it will be finally shut down.
Microsoft has openly stated that it will be doing away with its feature phone lineup that includes the Ashas and the low end smartphone lineup that includes the Nokia X but has in the last two months still gone ahead to release at least several of such devices. The Nokia X2 which as many think was likely a product in the pipeline before the Nokia acquisition so it had to go out anyway is one of those. As are the Nokia 130, the Nokia 105 and the Nokia 220 (which are just two weeks old in the market). Even if these devices are on the way out thanks to a partial calculated phase out, at least they are going out with a bang (well, sort of).