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Nokia announced a new family of Android phones called Nokia X at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week.
It was an awkward unveiling, since Microsoft is in the process of acquiring Nokia for $US7.2 billion. Microsoft wants to use Nokia’s handset business to promote Windows Phones, not Android devices.
But Nokia says its Android phones are good thing for Microsoft since they’ll be very cheap and introduce Microsoft services to people in emerging markets. Nokia sees the X line of phones as a gateway to regular Windows Phones.
We spent some time with one of the Nokia phones, the Nokia XL, at MWC this week. This isn’t the Android you’re probably used to. Nokia completely modified the software to promote Microsoft services instead of Google services like Gmail and Google Maps. It also has a separate app store from Google’s, which means developers will have to submit their apps separately to Nokia.
Take a look: