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Mobile

Nokia aims for work, play

The company unveils music, car and downloading phones on Tuesday, but it's uncertain when they'll be available in North America.

    Nokia on Tuesday unveiled three new phones, including one with an integrated MP3 player and another geared toward business professionals that offers enhanced downloading features.

    The three new GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) phones, announced ahead of the CeBit show in Hannover, Germany, will ship in the second and third quarters of 2003 in Europe and other markets, including Africa and Asia. The company did not say when the phones would be available in North America or how much they would cost.

    The new phones, with their myriad bells and whistles, are designed to attract a wide variety of people, from the music enthusiast to the mobile business professional.

    "Mobile phones are not purchased just for their voice functionality anymore," Anssi Vanjoki, executive vice president of Nokia Mobile Phones, said in a statement, adding that people are also looking for message, entertainment and business applications.

    To that end, the company unveiled the Nokia 6220, a camera phone for business people that contains multimedia messaging capability and a mobile e-mail client. The phone is Edge-enabled. Edge (enhanced data rates for GSM evolution) technology is an advanced wireless system designed to speed the delivery of voice and data traffic. The new phone also contains technology that lets people publish their whereabouts to colleagues and family members. The phone is scheduled to ship in Europe, Africa and Asia in the third quarter.

    The Nokia 810 car phone is designed to enhance communications in vehicles including company cars, vans and trucks. The phone, which lets two people who share a company vehicle use the device separately, is scheduled to ship in the third quarter of 2003 in Europe, Africa and some Asian markets.

    Nokia also announced the Nokia 3300 music phone, which contains an MP3 player, FM stereo and a digital recorder. The phone lets people transfer music files from a PC to the phone using a USB (universal serial bus) connection and allows people to play games and connect wirelessly to other devices via Bluetooth. The phone is expected to ship in the second quarter in Europe, Africa and Asia.

    In addition to the phones, Nokia unveiled a deal with T-Mobile to bundle some of the company's mobile data services with Nokia's products. The deal will start with the incorporation of the Nokia D211 multimode radio card with T-Mobile's Communication Centre. Nokia also said it is joining with KPN Mobile to offer content through the Nokia 3650 mobile phone.

    Nokia is the leader in the mobile phone market, selling about 40 percent of all handsets. The next biggest seller is Motorola, which accounts for about 16 percent of all mobile phone sales.

    Nokia's announcement comes just days after Sony four new cell phones and a wireless modem for laptops, which are scheduled to be available in North America by the end of the year.