Nokia Booklet 3G Begins Shipping In UK

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelance and long standing contributor to TechWeek Europe

British users will finally be able to get their hands on the Nokia 3G Booklet after it began shipping, but it comes with a hefty price tag

Nokia has finally begun shipping its Booklet 3G in the United Kingdom through the Nokia store, but industry watchers believe that it may have priced itself out of the netbook market.

The Booklet 3G, announced in August, is a high-specification notebook, but its price tag has been criticised. It was originally expected to have a price tag of €575 (£504), but in December it was announced that the the device would be much more expensive in the UK, selling for £649.

This is particularly galling for UK consumers, as that price is 75 percent more than what US buyers would pay, where it retails for $599 (£370).

Some observers have predicted that Nokia’s entrance will shake up the netbook market, but others say its high price shows a basic failure to understand the dynamics of the netbook market and will doom the product to failure. Indeed, for that price, UK users could purchase two netbooks from other manufacturers.

Nokia executives meanwhile have responded to the heavy criticism of the device, and have hinted that better versions are in the pipeline. Besides the hefty price, many were surprised that Nokia choose to use Windows on the device, instead of Linux.

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The Nokia 3G booklet has a 10.1-inch (1280 x 768) high definition display, encased in an aluminium shell that is just 20mm in thickness. It is powered by the 1.6GHz Z530 Atom processor and comes with 1GB RAM, 120GB HDD and Windows 7 Starter.

The Booklet 3G also boasts a 12 hour battery life, HDMI-out and 3G/HSPA connectivity, as well as Wi-Fi, hot-swappable SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) card functionality, and a built-in SD card reader and camera. It weighs roughly 2.2 pounds.