By Calvin Palmer
Finnish telecom giant Nokia today announced that it will start making a small light laptop.
The world’s largest maker of cell phones says the Nokia Booklet 3G will have a 10-inch screen, weigh just 2.8 pounds and use Microsoft Windows software.
The Booklet 3G will have a built-in GPS navigation chip coupled to Nokia’s Ovi Maps software, and an aluminum cover to contrast with the usual plastic.
Nokia said its PC would be “satisfying a need” among wireless carriers.
AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless have started selling netbooks in their stores, subsidizing the purchase for customers who sign up for wireless broadband plans. Sprint Nextel Corp. has started subsidizing netbooks sold at Best Buy.
“A growing number of people want the computing power of a PC with the full benefits of mobility,” said Kai Oistamo, Nokia’s executive vice president for devices.
The current global economic crisis has deterred many customers from buying new phones, while models such as Apple’s iPhone and Research in Motion’s Blackberry have stolen sales from the established telecom giants.
The price and launch date will be announced on September 2.