Nokia's futuristic Nautilus touchscreen phone leaked

News of major launches from Nokia will see the mobile maker "finally embrace the touchscreen movement", reports TheStreet.com

The finance-focused site has the skinny on the news from "industry sources" via analysts that Nokia is to introduce "three devices that feature big touchscreens and so-called Qwerty keypads".

Apparently scheduled to launch in the fourth quarter - in time for Christmas - the first is a 4.2-inch touchscreen MID with a "hidden slide-out keyboard".

Due in around a year's time, the second device is reportedly dubbed project "Nautilus", described as having a "very slim touchscreen design".

The report suggests the Nautilus will have a sensor that is "used to extend or withdraw the keyboard into the phone" while the ultrathin is said to get QWERTY keys that rise when the keypad slides out for easier typing.

As futuristic as the Nautilus range might sound, it does tie in with some of what we know Nokia is planning.

Aside from the fact that we know the company is prepping an entire "portfolio" of touch products, in November last year a Nokia exec strongly hinted that a gesture-based (hence the "sensor") interface was due to launch on high-end Nokia phones.

In addition, an unidentified touch Nokia device was spotted in a Nokia slide presentation in December 2008 with the accompanying explanation: "Direct UI simplifies interaction with standard strokes and gestures".

This kind of "stroke" or "gesture" could well be what the Nautilus' "sensor" needs to slide open the keyboard.

We will keep you posted.