First Microsoft Lumia phone to be revealed next week

The new smartphone, set to debut Tuesday, drops the Nokia logo and marks a new chapter for the Lumia family of mobile devices.

Richard Trenholm Former Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
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Microsoft's promo image for the upcoming Lumia. Microsoft

The first Microsoft Lumia smartphone is looming, with its unveiling set for Tuesday.

The company posted late Thursday a teaser of a smartphone with #MoreLumia hashtag, showing off an orange frame around what is presumably the front of the camera.

The new Lumia smartphone will mark the first time the product line drops the Nokia moniker in favor of Microsoft's name, signifying a new chapter for the mobile devices, which have struggled in the marketplace. The smartphones, which have featured bright colors and a reputation for powerful cameras, barely make a dent as far as sales go, except in a few emerging markets. But Lumia smartphones may have a new lease on life under Microsoft -- at least that's the company's hope.

"Microsoft is delivering the power of everyday mobile technology to everyone," states the new post on the renamed Conversations blog where Microsoft and previously Nokia share Lumia-related news.

The Windows Phone operating system likewise needs a spark. The OS has yet to catch on and powers just 2.5 percent of the world's mobile devices, according to market researcher IDC. In comparison, Google's Android OS runs on nearly 85 percent of mobile devices worldwide.

The orange frame of the teaser image ties together with the orange image that Microsoft revealed last month that touted the Microsoft logo alone. Although the image showed only part of what could be a new smartphone, the company name and Windows-shaped logo aren't actually joined by the word Lumia.

This is the image Microsoft released last month when it reiterated the upcoming name change from Nokia Lumia to Microsoft Lumia for its smartphones. Microsoft

"We are looking forward to unveiling a Microsoft Lumia device soon," Tuula Rytilä, senior vice president of marketing of phones for Microsoft, said at the time, while denying that the name change would render today's Nokia Lumia phones obsolete.

The logo switch is part of Microsoft's effort to more fully take control over its new smartphone business. The Lumia line plays an important role as an ambassador of sorts for the company's Windows Phone platform. Even before Microsoft acquired Nokia's mobile devices unit for $7.2 billion in April, the Lumia smartphone line was often used to tout the latest version of Windows Phone.

Microsoft has increasingly attempted to push its platforms through its own efforts in hardware. On the Windows side, Microsoft has its Surface tablets, which despite a rough start are beginning to see momentum. The company reported revenue of $908 million on Surface sales in its fiscal first quarter that ended September 30, up 127 percent from a year ago. It's hoping to do the same with the Lumia line of smartphones.

Even as Microsoft's logo begins to take over, the company has said the Nokia name will remain on entry-level devices, which continue to resonate in emerging markets.