Nokia’s HMD launches smartphone subscription service with eco-friendly knobs

Nokia’s HMD has continued to churn out usable but unremarkable smartphones over the past few years. Despite its efforts to catch up with rivals like Samsung and Apple, it has settled in releasing solid mid-range and entry-level smartphones, wireless headphones, and even tablets. It has now announced a new subscription plan that it says will “reward users” for keeping their phones longer.

Sign up for its new Circular, launched in the UK and Germany to begin with, focusing on the environment and sustainability. It will arrive alongside four new devices, including what HMD calls their most eco-friendly smartphone yet. The Nokia X30 is made from 100% recycled aluminum, including the device’s frame and speaker grilles, and uses 65% recycled plastic.

The X30, currently unavailable in the US, features a 6.54-inch display and a 50-megapixel camera with optical image stabilization (OIS). However, despite the benefits of that recycled material, HMD confirmed that there are still no removable batteries, one of the (several) problems when it comes to e-waste.

The Circular service itself is more interesting than the phone. The subscription fee will cover the phone itself, and any accidental damage, loss or theft will be handled at no separate monthly cost. Monthly pricing is reasonable, if not groundbreaking. For now, two devices (and they’re not even new Nokia phones) will participate in the Circular; The Nokia XR20 will cost £20 (about $23) per month with a £30 (about $35) setup fee. It’s an ultra-durable 6.67-inch 5G smartphone with dual cameras, including a 48-megapixel primary sensor.

There’s also the Nokia T10 LTE, an entry-level 8-inch tabletfor £10 (about $12) a month with the same £30 (about $35) setup fee.

While the aforementioned X30 will not be on the Circular at launch, concerns about reducing the area when the battery is not removable have been at least partially addressed. When you return your phone to them, even if you upgrade or leave service, the company will recycle or refurbish the device. It will also donate non-resellable devices to charity purposes, though details are few on what they will be. There will be longevity incentives for keeping your Nokia phone longer, it’s not a matter of finances. Instead, you’ll receive credits for every six months you continue to use your phone, with these credits increasing as the handset gets older. These can then be put into “buying” some saplings, or carbon offset credits.

Given the structure (and strength) of US mobile carriers, this model is unlikely to sell for the same price, but the company says it will roll out Circulars globally in the coming weeks. next month.

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