The day has finally come that Microsoft released an Android handset. Of course, we knew this day was coming, the wheels of which were set in motion when Microsoft acquired Nokia's mobile division. Still, it's a bit surreal. That said, Microsoft's launch of the Nokia X2 isn't about dominating the Android space with a high-end handset, but about introducing the "next billion" people to the mobile Internet and cloud services.
This is an entry level device from head to toe. The Nokia X2 has a 4.3-inch display with an 800x480 resolution powered by a Snapdragon 200 dual-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz and 1GB of RAM. It also features a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus and flash, 0.3-megapixel front-facing camera, and an 1800 mAh battery that's good for up to 10 hours of talk time on 2G, up to 13 hours of talk time on 3G, and up to 23 days of standby time.
Microsoft is being careful not to overly promote the Android brand. While Microsoft is quick to point out that the Nokia X2 "provides access to a world of Android apps and popular Microsoft services," the OS is referred to as the Nokia X Software Platform 2.0, which we hear is based on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.
The Nokia X2 will launch as a dual-SIM device available in glossy orange, black, and green in July for 99 euros. Later on Microsoft will add glossy yellow, white, and matte gray color options to the lineup. All of these seem destined for developing regions rather than places like the U.S. where Microsoft would prefer you purchase a Lumia handset.