Nokia unveils the Lumia 525, its new Windows Phone for the masses [Update]

First came the rumours. Then came the images. And then, earlier this month, came the inevitable leak of everything else that rather spoiled the surprise of the official announcement. But today, that unveiling came - rather unceremoniously, it must be said - as Nokia took the wraps off its new Lumia 525. 

The 525 is destined to become the successor to the Lumia 520, the most popular Windows Phone so far and, at one point, the most popular of any Windows device on sale. That makes it an incredibly important product, both in Nokia's range and in the broader hardware offering across the platform, which in turn makes it all the more curious that Nokia outed the new handset by doing nothing more than posting a product page on its site. 

While the Lumia 525 will not rock the world in terms of its spec sheet, to expect range-topping features would be missing the point. The 525, like its predecessor, is intended to provide an attractive low-cost solution for those purchasing a smartphone on a budget, and its specs reflect this well. Cast a glance at the spec sheet, and you'll probably find yourself needing to look closer to spot the differences between old and new. 

As the leak predicted, the 525 sports a dual-core 1GHz Snapdragon S4 processor, along with 8GB of onboard storage, and a microSD slot (supporting cards up to 64GB) to expand this further. It also gets a welcome boost in RAM, featuring a full 1GB - twice that offered in the 520. 

Like the model it replaces, the 525 has a 4-inch WVGA (800x480px) display. The camera is unchanged at 5MP and there's still no flash; alas, there's still no front-facing camera for video calls and selfies either. The dimensions and weight of the 525 are also precisely identical to the Lumia 520 - 119.9 x 64 x 9.9mm, weighing in at 124g. 

The device will be offered in black, white, yellow and orange variants (no cyan option, unlike the 520), but with interchangeable shells, buyers will be able to switch colours as desired.

There are no official details yet on pricing, but as far as availability goes, the Nokia site curiously lists only Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East as regions in which the 525 will be offered. According to Engadget, pricing in China is expected to be pretty much in line with the 520. The Verge, meanwhile, says that Nokia has priced the Lumia 525 at $249 SGD ($199 USD) in Singapore, with availability from December 14.

We have contacted Nokia to request further details, and will update this post if we hear any juicy info from them.

Update: Nokia has told us that the Lumia 525 will not be sold in the United Kingdom. We don't yet have any further details on availability in other regions. 

Source: Nokia via Engadget | image via Nokia

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29 Comments

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My guess is that the 520 is for Europe, 521 for the US and the 525 is for Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East

525 is the successor of 520.
The 521 is a special model of 520 asked for by a US carrier.
520 and 525 are the standard versions.

Radium said,
525 is the successor of 520.
The 521 is a special model of 520 asked for by a US carrier.
520 and 525 are the standard versions.

Why isn't the 525 being released in the UK if it's the replacement?

neo158 said,

Why isn't the 525 being released in the UK if it's the replacement?


It will take time before it is available. It can't become available in all countries the first day. They introduce it in steps.

Radium said,
It will take time before it is available. It can't become available in all countries the first day. They introduce it in steps.

Read the article, it won't be sold in the UK!!

Great, nice to see that they have released an updated version, the 520, my current device, is a wonderful smartphone, especialy for its price. For speed: low-end is an understatement for this phone. However, I'm going to wait for the 530, perheps 540 before I upgrade my device. 520 is to good at this moment.

It's a small update to the specs but 1GB of ram helps when it comes to apps and games. The price for this with tax at $199 is still a deal and through carriers I can see it starting at $99 and replacing the 520 in the US if/when it's released there. Unless Nokia only plans to sell the 625 in the US and a new 7xx/8xx/9xx going forward.

Indeed, and qHD isn't supported on the platform anyway. It would be more effort than it's worth to introduce qHD development and device support when we're not all that far off 720p panels falling to acceptable prices for entry-level handsets.

The phone wouldn't benefit much with a 960x540 resolution. The tiles would remain the same size. Text would not be that much better as it is now. The 1GB ram means that it can run the apps that are being released without some rework as some of then were in the past. It's already proven to be a great low cost phone. The small added specs helps it become a more compatible phone to the new apps coming that needs the 1GB memory.

Not quite. The 520 was the universal model; the 521 was the only carrier-specific variant, for T-Mobile US. The 525 replaces the 520. Whether we'll see a '526' for T-Mo US remains to be seen.

that would just increase the price point. The intended market for this phone seem to find the current screen sufficient. Adding a FF camera might have been a cheaper upgrade.

Ezekiel Carsella said,
and added interchangeable shells. that's it.

Seems to me they got rid of the red and blue options in favor of orange.

torrentthief said,
so they just doubled the ram?

It's all that is needed to make the Phone fly. Windows Phone is already very fast due to its design, especially core apps. However low RAM means resume that thirdparty apps sometimes take a while to load. A problem unknown to say the Lumia 920. By increasing the RAM they can make a low-end WP very competitive.

I've been testing the 625 for the last couple of months, and I have to say it's a wonderful device, especially for the price. And 4G too!