Microsoft unveils the $70 Lumia 430, aimed at emerging markets

Microsoft has released yet another low-end device that it hopes will charm smartphone buyers who might otherwise have opted for a budget Android handset.

The dual-SIM Lumia 430.
The dual-SIM Lumia 430. Image: Microsoft
Microsoft is continuing its effort to take Windows Phone to ever-lower price points with the launch of the Lumia 430.

The handset, announced on Thursday, will cost around $70 and is described by Microsoft as its "most affordable" Lumia to date.

The Lumia 430 is a dual-SIM device and, as its price indicates, sees Microsoft cutting back on the specs.

The handset comes with a four-inch WVGA display, runs a 1.2GHz dual core Snapdragon 200 chip, and 8GB of onboard memory, extendable to 128GB via the microSD slot. As usual, there's Microsoft's offer of some free OneDrive storage as well - 15GB for new users, and another 15GB for anyone using the service to back up snaps from the 430.

The 430 still manages to pack in both a rear and front camera, with a two megapixel and 0.3 megapixel sensor respectively. The battery is 1500mAh and there's 1GB of RAM onboard.

The device will ship with Windows 8.1 with the Lumia Denim firmware. Microsoft says it will be upgradeable to Windows 10 when the OS is released, but adds: "not every phone will support all possible Windows 10 features. Certain features and experiences will require more advanced future hardware".

The 430 looks to be targeted at users in emerging markets: Microsoft said the phone will be released in April in APAC, India, the Middle East, Russia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, and Belarus.

For those in developed markets with a yen for cheaper Windows Phone hardware, Microsoft recently released the Lumia 435, which has similar specs but an extra $10 on the price tag. It was launched in Europe, as well as India, APAC and the Middle East last month.

Between the last quarter of 2011 and the corresponding quarter of 2013, Windows Phone's share of the smartphone market doubled from 1.5 percent to three percent. However, it closed last year slightly down, accounting for 2.8 percent of all smartphones sold, according to analysts IDC.

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