Since the launch of the iPhone, Nokia has struggled to regain their place as the number one mobile phone brand. With reported losses of £427 million in the second quarter of 2011, the Finnish brand is doing everything they can to try and claw their way back up the smartphone ladder. It has been well publicised that, from late 2011, all their smartphones will run on the Window Phone 7 operating system, and this month saw the announcement of Nokia’s latest offensive: their first Symbian-powered 1GHz mobile phone.

Dubbed the ‘Nokia 500’, the new handset has been called ‘the world’s fastest affordable phone’. As well as the impressive 1GHz processor, the device will have a 5-megapixel camera, a music player and a FM and Internet radio. It will also come preloaded with a wide range of entertainment apps including Shazam Encore, Lonely Planet guides and Gig Finder, as well as the social networking heavyweights like Facebook and Twitter. The phone will also feature the latest version of Nokia Maps, which is optimised for social networking and features pedestrian and vehicle offline navigation with voice guidance

Speaking about the 500, Nokia’s vice-president Ilari Nurmi said, “Until now, price accessible smart phones often meant low quality on its hardware. This is another example of Nokia’s continuous innovation commitment within the smartphone portfolio and an example of how Symbian can help capitalize market opportunities in the next few years”.

A black version of the Nokia 500 will be available from the 3rd quarter of 2011, with a white model following before the end of the year. Both colour variants come with interchangeable back covers. Further colours and designs will become available throughout next year. It is expected to be priced around £150.

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