Recently I joined the Nokia Developers program and received the Nokia Asha 311 smart phone based on a Nokia operating system that is specific to gain a large market for rural areas like India with a low cost smart phone.

I did try to port some of my existing apps into the Nokia beta framework program which is nicely skinned to look like the Eclipse IDE. However they are still working on this program and it doesn’t support many of the CSS features I’m tapping into for many of my apps. There are some very basic starter templates which you can use to build a Nokia App, but it’s not very interesting to look at.

Nokia did mention they would send developers the Nokia Asha 501 once the phone is it’s available, which might tap into a better browser I’m hoping. The 311 browser is basic and displays sites with a really tiny width. The phone screen is sub par and I cannot install apps without a sim card. I did find that the radio was really cool and the HD radio was also nice but not the best selling feature.

I’m probably going to build an Asha app based on a starter template, and then I’ll think about porting over an app once all the css and js will run native in the phone’s sdk.