Microsoft has officially taken the wraps off two new Lumia smartphones: the 640 and 640 XL. Details of the pair of low-end phones leaked yesterday in advance of today’s unveil, but their real significance lies with the services they are offered with rather than their specs.
That’s because Microsoft is offering a pretty compelling software bundle for free alongside these phones. Customers who purchase either new Lumia model will get a one-year license for Microsoft’s Office 365 suite, giving them access from their Lumia, one PC and one tablet. Beyond that, it is also offering 1TB of OneDrive storage and 60 minutes of international Skype calling per month.
The devices will be available worldwide from April, at price points that Microsoft mobile chief Steven Elop believes are good for business users (who will particularly appreciate these productivity services), as well as regular consumers. The 640 will cost 139 EUR ($155) for a 3G model and 159 EUR ($178) for the LTE model. The 640 XL is priced at 189 EUR ($211) or 219 EUR ($245).
So, about those phones.
The Lumia 640 is a five-inch device, while the 640 XL is 5.7-inches. The phones are available in 3G and LTE versions, and with single- and dual-SIM versions too. Initially they will ship with Windows 8.1, but Microsoft is promising an upgrade to Windows 10 will arrive “later this year” — the company plans to do similar with other Windows 8.1 phones.
The Lumia 640 includes a one-megapixel front-facing camera and an eight-megapixel camera on the back. Those into phone photography (or Skype) get more from the 640 XL, which includes a 13-megapixel camera on the back and a five-megapixel front-facing camera.
Both devices sport the same innards: a 1.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor from Qualcomm and come with 1GB of RAM. Then there’s 8GB of internal memory, which can be expanded by a media card.