Microsoft's first exclusively branded smartphone, the Lumia 535, can now finally be purchased from Microsoft's official physical and online stores in the US.
A carrier-unlocked variant of Microsoft Lumia is priced at $149 (£97) and the handset falls within the value-for-money category by virtue of its tech-specs that do well to complement the price tag.
Microsoft released the Lumia 535 in December 2014, but buyers in the US could procure the smartphone only via Expansys (a third party online e-tailer). As it is a well known fact that buyers prefer purchasing smartphones more through official retail stores (both and online) rather than via unknown third-party sellers, Lumia 535's latest in-retail availability in the US gains relevance.
Buyers of Lumia 535 also need not pay shipping charges, if Lumia 535 is ordered from Microsoft's official e-store.
Why has the Lumia 535 generated increased hype?
Lumia 535 had made all the right pre-release noises considering the fact that the smartphone is Redmond's first-ever smartphone, and also due to the fact that the smartphone is the first-ever non-Nokia branded handset in the world.
Another aspect is the Lumia 535's $149 price tag which makes it affordable amongst similar-range smartphones. The Lumia 520 was called a best-seller within its range in 2013, and Lumia 535 could replicate the 520's success considering the former comes with better features, like the Microsoft Cortana voice assistant.
Lumia 535 also follows Microsoft's new '5,5,5' aspect that indicate the smartphone's 5in display, 5MP rear camera and 5MP front camera.
[Also read our technical comparison of the Lumia 535 and the Lumia 520].
Apart from the US, Microsoft Lumia is currently up for purchase in India and the smartphone has reportedly been successful in capturing the fancy of people in the country; a fact evident by a Q1 2015 shipping report that indicates Lumia 535 shipments having touched the half million mark within a month of the smartphone's release in India.
Key technical specifications of Microsoft Lumia 535
- 5in IPS display enclosed in Gorilla Glass 3
- Microsoft Windows Phone 8.1 operating platform
- Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 processor, clocked at 1.2GHz
- Dual SIM-card support
- 5MP primary camera
- 5MP secondary camera
- 1GB RAM
- 8GB internal storage
- MicroSD card slot for expansion of internal storage, up to 128GB
- 3G, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi and microUSB connectivity
- 1905 mAh Li-Ion battery, with a claimed talk-time of up to 13 hours on 3G, and a music playback time of up to 78 hours.
The above key hardware aspects of the Lumia 535 should do well to complement the $149 price tag of the smartphone. The handset could turn out to be a hit in the US considering the fact that it looks custom-made for first-time smartphone buyers on a shoestring budget, preferring to own a non-Chinese smartphone.