Microsoft Corp will continue to support as well as sell feature phones. This was evident when the giant technology firm entered into a licensing agreement with Opera. The deal makes Opera Mini the pre-installed and default browser on Microsoft’s feature phones, which include the Series 30+, the Series 40, and even the Nokia Asha platforms. Microsoft owns Nokia’s mobile business after it acquired the latter previously.
In a statement, Microsoft phone department’s head of legacy business Rich Bernardo assured the continuous existence of such feature phones. He emphasized how those handsets have been performing well in terms of sales as more consumers still prefer those if they want useful mobile gadgets at much lower price tags.
Opera Mini as beneficial browser
Opera Mini, the mobile version of desktop browser Opera, is a good choice for its compatibility with almost any type of handset, including the costlier smartphones. To date, it is being used by up to 250 million users, including over 100 million who are using Android devices. It boasts of a built-in compression technology, which allows Opera Mini users to possibly save their mobile data.
In his statement, Lars Boilesen, Opera Software CEO, said he sees this deal as an opportunity to further spread the benefits of the browser especially in core markets. He reiterated that there are still many consumers who are yet to shift to smartphones. He added that this partnership can target those people by offering them a better browsing experience.
Focus on cheaper handsets
The announcement of the deal follows the unveiling last week of the Nokia 130, which only costs $25. This cheap handset comes with a color display sized 1.8 inches plus built-in music and video player. Logically, Microsoft is taking the strategy to focus on low-cost mobile phones, which could easily be a big hit especially to budget-conscious consumers.
Meanwhile, users of handsets that has Nokia’s Xpress browser are being advised to switch to Opera Mini. Microsoft is expected to encourage the shift through various announcements and programs in the coming weeks. On the other hand, new feature phones from Microsoft will automatically come with the pre-installed version of Opera Mini.