Published by David Gilson at 10:49 UTC, August 12th 2011
Mobile Fun, an online UK mobile phone and accessory retailer has announced that it is accepting pre-orders of the Nokia N9. The retailer does not yet have a release date for the device, but it has confirmed a retail price of £519.95 (UK Pounds). Pre-orders have also been announced at Expansys, but the price has yet be confirmed. This comes amid speculation around which international markets in which the Nokia N9 will be available. It also highlights the point that a lack of operator support does not equal a complete retail black-out.
Nokia has indicated, in a number of statements, that the N9 will not be launched in the UK. By this, the company means there are currently no plans to make the device available through operators. While Nokia can seek to encourage to an operator to range a device by offering discounts and co-marketing campaigns, the final decision on whether to range any device rests with the operator.
However, as the announcement from Mobile Fun shows, this does not preclude the device being made available SIM-free. The same situation is applicable in every market in which Nokia operates and applies to all Nokia devices.
The importance of operators varies from market to market; in some market the operator dominate phone sales (e.g. USA), in others direct to consumer sales are more important (India). A general rule of thumb is that the influence of operators decreases from West to East, but there are exceptions to this.
Pre-orders for the Nokia N9 at Mobile Fun
Pre-orders for the Nokia N9 at Expansys
The announcement was made via Mobile Fun's news letter, which had the following to say about the device:
We've got a price for the upcoming SIM Free Nokia N9 - £519.95 and to be honest you get quite a lot for your monies. The N9 is the first Nokia handset to run MeeGo software making it pretty different from previous Nokia handsets. It also has a 3.9" capacitive AMOLED touchscreen (try saying that really fast) so your screen quality is pretty impressive and the clarity will be perfect. The camera is 8MP and also has HD recording and the camera is actually the fastest on any smartphone - so you haven't got any excuses for not taking pictures when using the N9. What I really like about the N9 though is it's curved design because personally I think it makes it look a lot more stylish and really compliments the fact that the handset doesn't have a home or a back button - just the touchscreen in all it's glory :) We don't have a release date for the handset yet but when we do I'll let you know
In light of this news we have updated our N9 FAQ. If you see the N9 available through any other retailers, please let us know in the comments.
David Gilson and Rafe Blandford for All About MeeGo, 12th August 2011
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