MrSeb writes: "After almost five years of manic one-upmanship following the initial release of the iPhone, one OEM has finally realized that the future of smartphones lays in the arms of everyday consumers. The Nokia Lumia 900, available today and priced at $450 off-contract (or between $0 and $99 on-contract), is the cheapest, high-performance smartphone that the world has ever seen, and a strong indicator that it’s high time for early adopters to step aside before they’re washed away by mom-and-pop consumers. In comparison, the 16GB iPhone 4S is $650, and the 16GB Galaxy Nexus is around $600. There are trade-offs, of course: the fact that the phone only has access to 50,000 apps is the most notable, but WP7 also doesn’t support IPsec VPN at all, and doesn’t have built-in support for VoIP or video calling, or USB mass storage. In reality, though, many of these factors are the kind of thing that would put off upgrades or sidegrades — they’re not the kind of thing that a first-time smartphone buyer balks at. The Lumia 900 feels good in the hand, looks attractive, is very responsive, and has most of the features that a smartphone should have. That’s the key point here: The Lumia 900 isn’t targeting iPhone or Galaxy users; it’s targeting the 41% of the US public who still own a feature phone. Other tech sites are calling the Lumia 900 a flagship phone, and thus comparing it to other flagships like the iPhone 4S — but that’s like comparing the latest Hyundai with a Ferrari. They’re both excellent cars/phones, but they appeal to wholly different categories of consumer. The Lumia 900 is $200 cheaper than the iPhone 4S! As long as Nokia and Microsoft can convince the masses that this is a smartphone, and yet not directly comparable to the iPhone or high-end Androids — and the “Beautifully Different” ad campaign does just that — the Lumia 900 should fly off the shelves."
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