HMD Global announced a new multibrand strategy just two years before the Nokia brand license for smartphones and tablets is about to expire. The new strategy introduces HMD’s own brand for smartphones, feature phones, tablets, and accessories, as well as manufacturing and potentially handling devices for other brands.
Now, two new model numbers have leaked from the GSMA IMEI database, which likely represent the first HMD-branded smartphone and possibly a feature phone. The model numbers are TA-1585 and N159V. There isn’t much information available about these phones or what they might actually be—smartphones or a smartphone and a feature phones, or a smartphone for global and US market. The certification only confirms that these model numbers are from HMD Global.
Additionally, there’s the EU conformity declaration for the TA-1585, which was signed by Aihui Xiao, a Product Lead of HMD Global in Beijing. The declaration of conformity was issued on October 24, 2023, and it mentions that model TA-1585 is a mobile phone with Android software version 00WW_0_122. It also notes that the phone was shipped with accessories and components, including an adapter, earphones, battery, USB cable, and an LCD panel.
This information might be interesting because the parts sent for testing could suggest that the battery is detachable, or that TA-1585 could be easily repairable, similar to the Nokia G42 and G22. The model number is close to the model number of the Nokia G42 5G, which is TA-1581 (and there is also TA-1591).
This information might shed some light on whether the two new model numbers represent HMD’s first phones intended for the global and US markets, and if they will be designed similarly to the Nokia G42. Similar codes starting with the letter ‘N’ were used for devices like the Nokia C300 (TA-1515, N155DL), Nokia C200 (TA-1437, N151DL), Nokia 110 (TA-1554, N156DL), and Nokia 100 (TA-1484, N152DL).
Or perhaps this is just a Nokia G42 version made exclusively for the US market, as almost every model designed for the US carrier has dual codes. It’s possible that we are expecting a Nokia G420 5G. This could be a strategic move, especially since the G42 is a well-balanced, affordable mid-ranger, and HMD is selling it successfully globally. Furthermore, HMD achieved great results in the US market in Q3 2023, so introducing its own devices to that market would be a smart move.
However, the GSMA IMEI Database did mention the brand of the device, clearly stating ‘HMD.’ Now, HMD Global is a company that manufactures Nokia devices, but the brand itself is ‘Nokia.’ This could imply that we are looking at new codes for HMD’s phones. The code system is based on the one well-established with Nokia devices, and that is not something we should be concerned about. However, it raises the question of whether HMD and Nokia branded phones might not differ that much, or will they?
In summary, we might be seeing codes for the first HMD branded smartphone that might be available globally and in the US, and could bring quick fixability as seen in G42. It definitely is not too early to begin testing the first HMD smartphone, as the release of this device is expected in the first half of 2024.