HELSINKI NokiaNOK1V.HE, the world's largest cellphone maker, is set to start selling a group of E-series enterprise handsets and the top-of-the-range N96 multimedia device, a senior executive said on Monday.
"We will in the third quarter bring to the market the N96 we have launched and a group of E-series multimedia computers that will be sure to have a strong stamp on where this market is going," Anssi Vanjoki, senior executive vice president of Nokia Markets, told Reuters on Monday.
Nokia declined to comment on the models, but industry sources said the company is set to come out next week with new E66 and E71 models. They are both expected to feature GPS, a 3.2 megapixel camera and 128 megabytes of memory.
Nokia unveiled the N96 in February and it is seen as the successor to its top profit generator, the N95. It will come with 16 gigabytes of internal memory and is expected to retail around 550 euros ($870), excluding subsidies and taxes.
"The N96 that we have introduced ... we believe this will be a significant product to the group who define the tone where the market is going," Vanjoki said. "Preorders for it are encouraging."
Nokia said in its fourth-quarter earnings report it had sold 6 million of the N95, often seen as the key rival to Apple's (AAPL.O) iPhone, by end-December. At the time this compared with Apple's 4 million iPhones sold. Apple has said it aims to sell 10 million iPhones by the end of 2008.
Shares in Nokia were trading 1.4 percent higher at 17.03 euros by 1257 GMT, outperforming the 0.3 percent weaker DJ Stoxx European technology index .SX8P.
(Reporting by Sami Torma; Editing by Quentin Bryar)