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Nokia's basic cellphones live on at Microsoft

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New $25 Nokia 130 handset aims for emerging markets

Microsoft might be killing off Nokia’s featurephones and Android handsets, but the company is keeping the very basic Nokia phones alive. That’s the message today as the company launches a new Nokia 130 handset that will sell for just 19 Euro ($25). It’s a basic cellphone that supports MP3s and videos along with an FM radio and flashlight. It’s designed for emerging markets and countries where smartphones are still slowly pushing down to a sub-$30 price point.

In an interview with Recode, Microsoft’s Jo Harlow says the company is sticking with its basic cellphones. "Microsoft doesn’t have any other project that can reach these consumers," explains Harlow. Despite its latest Nokia 103 handset lacking internet connectivity, Harlow believes "these consumers will create a Microsoft account and become part of the Microsoft ecosystem." That’s the same line Microsoft used to justify the existence of Nokia’s X Android phones, at least until the company killed them off post-acquisition. Either way, it looks like Microsoft is sticking with these basic handsets, leaving Windows Phone set to take over the low- and high-end for smartphones.