HMD Global Kenya
Joseph Umunakwe, Genaral Manager, HMD Global WECA (Left) and Celeste Muli, Marketing Manager, HMD Global, East Africa (Right)
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HMD Global has today introduced their latest lineup of Android powered smartphones into the Kenyan market. The trio consists of the entry-level Nokia 1, mid-range Nokia 6 (Second Generation) and near flagship, Nokia 7 Plus. The devices all run the latest version of Android, which is Oreo. With the Nokia 1 specifically running Android Oreo (Go Edition), which is a toned down version of Android built specifically for devices with 1GB RAM or less.

The new range of Nokia smartphones carry with them the promise from the company to deliver premium design and up to date secure and pure Android, across the range. “Premium doesn’t have to come with a price tag and premium is what runs across our portfolio, from the Nokia 8 Sirocco, down to the Nokia 8,” said Joseph Umunakwe, HMD Global’s General Manager for West, East and Central Africa.

Nokia 1

Nokia 1

The Nokia 1 is the company’s cheapest Android smartphone yet. The device comes with a price tag of Kes.9500 and offers:

  • 5” Display (480 x 854)
  • Android 8.1 Oreo (Go Edition)
  • MediaTek MT6737M
  • 8GB Internal Storage and 1GB RAM
  • 5MP Main Camera, 2MP front-facing camera
  • 2150mAh battery

On top of that spec list, the Nokia 1 id also positioned as a stylish device with its interchangeable back covers that users can switch to match their style.

Nokia 6 (Second Generation)

The beloved Nokia 6 got a reboot this year, with improvements in build quality, performance and also borrowing features from last year’s flagship, Nokia 8 such as OZO Audio and USB-C. The truth is, last year’s Nokia 6 missed a lot of marks compared to the competition but HMD has since rectified the “problem” if we may say. Here are the new specifications:

  • 5” Display (1080 x 1920)
  • Android 8.1 Oreo
  • Snapdragon 630
  • 32GB Internal Storage and 3GB RAM
  • 16MP Main Camera, 8MP front-facing camera
  • 3000mAh battery

The second generation Nokia 6 will ask for Kes.29,000 from you.

Nokia 7 Plus

Nokia 7 Plus

The last device on the list is the Nokia 7 Plus that I described as a near-flagship phone. The Nokia 7 Plus comes with almost all the specs that you find on the Nokia 8 Sirocco, aside from the lower RAM, lower resolution display, lower performance and lack of lifestyle features such as water resistance. However, the 7 Plus does bring a lot to the table:

  • 6.0” Display (1080 x 2160)
  • Android 8.1 Oreo
  • Snapdragon 660
  • 64GB Internal Storage and 4GB RAM
  • Dual 12MP Main Camera, 16MP front-facing camera all with Zeiss optics
  • 3800mAh battery

The display of the Nokia 7 Plus comes in the new 18:9 form factor, making it stand out from the lineup, not only as the most expensive phone but also, the better looking one. The Nokia 7 Plus also packs features such as OZO Audio recording and USB-C. The retail price for the Nokia 7 Plus has been set at Kes.46,000.

For those who were waiting for the Nokia 8 Sirocco, unfortunately, the device is not yet available locally, alongside the special edition “banana phone”, Nokia 8110. HMD Global said that the Nokia 8 Sirocco would be available at a later date, “For us at HMD Global, it is our continuous desire to bring portfolio into the market across multiple price points so that people have a choice. The Nokia 8 Sirocco will be made available to the consumers in due time,” said Joseph Umunakwe.

Growing Market Share

Nokia Portfolio Kenya

The company was also quick to acknowledge that they are happy with the performance of sales from last year. They didn’t give specific numbers relating to Kenya or the region, but global sales were recorded at 8.7 million smartphone units in 2017, closing that the year with at least 1% global market share.

Speaking on the company’s expectations in Kenya this year, Joseph Umunakwe said that they are leveraging on their ability to connect with what matters most to the consumer, which is innovation, performance, accessibility. “The market is saturated with a lot of brands. Each brand is offering something that they think the consumer wants and we are coming on board with very good insights of what the consumer is actually looking for. We have designed a proposition that goes with those pain points,” he concluded.

The new portfolio of Nokia smartphones will be available countrywide at various stores.

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