I’ve got some good news and some bad news. The good news is that the highly anticipated Nokia 5800 XpressMusic “Tube” is now hitting retailers. The bad news is that Nokia’s first touchscreen-only mobile phone is only shipping to select markets.
It’s not that the rest of the world is going to get snubbed, per se, but Nokia has hand-picked a few select markets to receive the first few shipments of the S60 Touch-equipped cell phone. Seeing how the touchscreen market is quickly heating up with devices like the BlackBerry Bold, it would be in Nokia’s best interest to get cracking on that production.
Unfortunately, none of the first few batches of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic are being earmarked for anywhere near North America. Instead, some of the “selected markets” include such places as Russia, Spain, India, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Nokia’s homeland of Finland. Seeing how the phone will be available in Taiwan and Hong Kong, it won’t be long before these get offered up on the gray market.
To add insult to injury, one way for sellers to handle the limited production and distribution of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic is to jack up the price. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if some retailers started pushing this handset around for at least a couple hundred dollars more than the MSRP. The price-gouging is expected to hold up until at least the end of the year.
With the elevated pricing, the “Tube” will be more exclusive than ever, so if you’re one of the lucky ones with the cash and means to get your hands on a 5800 XpressMusic, there’s a good chance you won’t be duplicated by your neighbor.