Nokia Bridges Wireless Gap With New Phones

Nokia on Monday introduced three new mobile phones with an emphasis on connectivity. The Nokia 6131, 6070 and 6136 handsets seek to converge style with the latest in wireless technology.

While the 6131 and 6070 are mid-range phones targeting consumers, the 6136 may pique the interest of enterprise customers. That’s because the phone bridges two of the world’s most ubiquitous wireless standards — GSM and WLAN.

The new Nokia 6136 phone integrates UMA (Unlicensed Mobile Access) technology to allow for handover of voice and data connections between GSM cellular and WLAN networks.

“By implementing UMA technology into this new device, worldwide quadband GSM coverage is combined with superior indoor WLAN coverage to create a device that can deliver an easy-to-use, seamless communications experience in virtually any situation,” said Kai Oistamo, executive vice president and general manager, Mobile Phones, Nokia.

Transition Points

With the UMA technology found on the Nokia 6136, Nokia said operators can deliver voice and data services to subscribers over WLAN access networks, dramatically increasing mobile service availability while decreasing the costs related to network deployment.

“Over the long haul, enterprises will like this phone because it will allow their mobile workers to continue a phone call as they are leaving the building and as they come back into the building,” Burton Group Senior Analyst Mike Disabato told TechNewsWorld.

Avaya and Motorola have already devised UMA standards and the IEEE is forging ahead in order to facilitate these handoffs. UMA will become more common as more enterprises clamor for these transition point capabilities, Disabato said.

Nokia 6136 also includes a 1.3-megapixel camera with 8x digital zoom. The phone supports a removable microSD memory card allowing for optional storage and has a built-in stereo FM radio. The Nokia 6136 phone is expected to be available during the second quarter of 2006.

Ergonomically Designed

The Nokia 6131 boasts an ergonomic design with a spaced keypad on a black handset with chrome accents. Pressing a button automatically opens the phone, which features a high-resolution display that supports 16 million colors for rich multimedia viewing.

The Nokia 6131 offers a built-in digital music player and FM stereo radio, along with a 3-megapixel camera and 8x digital zoom. Both the main and cover displays can be used as viewfinder.

Enabled with Bluetooth wireless technology, an e-mail client supporting attachments, a memory card slot for hot-swappable microSD memory card, and Nokia Xpress audio messaging and push to talk connectivity, the Nokia 6131 will be available in Europe in the second quarter of 2006 for 270 euros (US$321). The U.S. market will have to wait until later this year.

A Familiar Design

With its familiar Nokia design, the Nokia 6070 offers basic camera phone capabilities. The handset offers the Nokia Series 40 user interface and features a range of messaging functions, like e-mail, instant messaging and Nokia Xpress audio messaging.

Voice communication features include push to talk, voice recorder and an integrated handsfree speaker. An XHTML browser enables easy browsing for news and uploading images and videos for sharing. The phone comes with a stereo FM radio and supports true tones, MP3 and polyphonic MIDI ringingtones.

The triband Nokia 6070 is expected to be available in the second quarter of 2006 at an estimated retail price of 135 euros ($160).

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