Microsoft and Nokia have remained quiet about launching a handset based on Android, but that isn't stopping leakers from saying the duo will. EvLeaks has posted yet another photo on Twitter showing the alleged Android handset, codenamed Normandy. This time, EvLeaks shows off the heavily modified Android interface the handset will have, that actually looks a lot like Windows Phone.
The user interface modified by Nokia engineers has similar tiles to what are found on Windows Phone in a similar multi-size setup. There's similar apps too: Internet, Store, Twitter, Skype, Nokia Here maps, BlackBerry Messenger, a Camera and more. It's not clear if Microsoft and Nokia will employ their own app marketplace, or have Google Play which would require Google's official blessing. Nokia has taken the same route as Amazon in terms of adding its own creativity to Android.
The user interface of the "forked" Android operating system includes a notification centre set to show users their missed calls, calendar appointments, and app notifications. There's the same black background and white text interface like Windows Phone 8.
It's not clear when Microsoft and Nokia plan to release the Android-based handset, but the launch is expected to come after the buyout deal between Microsoft and Nokia closes in the first quarter of 2014. The Normandy handset is reportedly aimed at the low-end, emerging markets, providing a cheap first time handset for customers.
A report from The New York Times in September claimed that before the sale to Microsoft, Nokia engineers had developed Lumia phones running Google's Android operating system. Microsoft apparently knew about the Android handsets, though they didn't become a part of discussions when the companies negotiated.
It would be odd if an Android handset was released under Microsoft, even though industry insiders, fans, and the like, have all hoped for an Android handset from Nokia for years. Several sources have claimed that even with Microsoft's Windows Phone allegiance, the Normandy handset will be released in 2014.
Leaked photos have shown the Normandy handset's back looking closely to a Lumia handset, with a polycarbonate finish, camera flash, and the usual side buttons for power and volume. A status bar on the user interface leaked shows dual-SIM capabilities.
The Verge reports on potential specifications for the handset, saying it will have a 4-inch display, Qualcomm S4 processor, 3-megapixel camera, 4GB of storage, and 512MB of RAM. There will also be expandable storage through a microSD card.