Nokia has revealed its first mobile phone to combine a conventional keypad with a touch-sensitive screen. The Nokia X3 Touch and Type is expected to go on sale in Q3 2010 for around 125 Euro SIM-free, which isn't far off £125 by the time you've added VAT.
Inside the aluminium-backed casing, which is just 9.6mm deep, there's the series 40 operating system, 3G and WiFi connectivity, an expandable memory, a music player, an FM radio and a 5-megapixel camera. It's an entertainment-oriented device, as are all X-prefixed Nokia phones.
If the model number seems familiar, it's because Nokia released another phone called the X3 – technically the X3-00 – around a year ago. The company says the new similarly-named device "sits alongside" the older slide-open X3.
Mary McDowell, Executive Vice President of Mobile Phones at Nokia, said "The Nokia X3 is a great example of bringing new consumer value to lower price points. With the Nokia X3 we are giving consumers the best of both worlds by combining a touch screen and a keypad in an affordable device. We have given people a larger screen with clear icons and menus plus kept critical keys such as the send and end keys. We've also added dedicated function keys for important links like music and text messaging. "We have designed the Nokia X3 to be a touch and type device because typing is ideal for SMS and social networking where fast and frequent input is needed, while touch is ideal for functions such as setting alarms, smooth browsing and controlling applications like music and games. Our research tells us consumers who have invested years in becoming fast one-handed, one-thumb texters want to maintain their speedy edge for SMS, chat and instant messaging - yet enjoy the benefits of touch as well".