New figures from mobile phone company Nokia have revealed that its cheaper, no-frills Asha smartphone model is currently outselling the brand’s premium offering, the Lumia.
According to Nokia, of the 14 million combined sales of Asha and Lumia models in the final quarter of 2012, the Lumia device accounted for just 4.4 million units.
The news has triggered comment from industry analysts that the market for economy smartphones in general is likely to become stronger – alongside rumours that a budget version of the iPhone might also be in the pipeline from Apple.
Although economy smartphones usually have slightly lesser processors than premium smartphones – and are also often endowed with lower quality display images and a poorer quality camera – many commentators point to their main appeal being their significantly lower cost to the consumer.
Whilst the latest iPhone 5 can set the consumer back by well over £500, some economy smartphones – it is pointed out – can retail for as little as £30.
With data from ComScore, an independent research organisation, showing that iPhone devices were owned by only 28 per cent of all UK smartphone users, some commentators are now debating whether continuing to appeal exclusively to the high end of the market is the best course of action for Apple.
In the meantime, news of another forthcoming economy smartphone for the European market has been announced – a Chinese ZTE device using Mozilla Firefox software. The influx of budget devices is only likely to emphasise the importance of effective mobile marketing.