HMD Global the Company that licenses the Nokia brand is looking to launch a cheap 5G smartphone in 2020 when both Telstra and Optus are tipped to crank up marketing for 5G.
The Company will join a long list of brands including TCL Mobile, Alcatel, Motorola and Aspera Mobile who will deliver a value 5G device.
Juho Sarvikas, chief product officer for HMD, told Digital Trends it will cost roughly half of what exists today, which if the Oppo, LG and Samsung 5G devices being exclusively offered by Samsung are anything to go by we are looking at around $800.
The 5G phones available exclusive at Telstra The Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G starts at $1,899, whereas the LG V50 ThinQ 5G retails for $1729, the Chinese Oppo Reno 5G is retailing for $1499.
“We see a particular opportunity for us in bringing 5G to a more affordable segment as we enter the market,” Sarvikas said.
“I would say affordable in relation to what’s available today. I would love to see us at half of the price where you have 5G today.”
A Nokia 5G phone that costs around $800 could boost 5G adoption, but HMD will be facing stiff competition due in part to their limited distribution in Australia and a lack of marketing with HDM Global still living off the Nokia’s past reputation.
Sarvikas said HMD is “working closely” with silicon vendors — likely Qualcomm as most of its smartphones use Qualcomm chipsets — as well as with Nokia, which has been deploying and operating 5G services for enterprise customers.
HMD said it’s also talking to carriers with a view to ranging their devices.
HMD typically makes several major smartphone announcements at Mobile World Congress, so there’s a good chance we’ll see news around a Nokia 5G phone next February.