Nokia recently undertook a survey of consumers in emerging markets and exposed a new trend: mobile phone sharing. Apparently, more than 50 percent of those surveyed in India and Pakistan, plus almost 30 percent in Vietnam, either already share or would be willing to share the use of their mobile phone with family or friends. Alex Lambeek, Vice President of Entry Devices with Nokia does not as the name suggests deal with doorbells, but rather the lower end of the handset product line. Lambeek reckons that phone sharing is a logical trend in the less mature markets, saying "more and more families are purchasing a mobile phone for the entire family to use, not just the head of the household."

In response, Nokia has announced a handset that is made to share. Literally made to share, from the ground up. The Nokia 1209 really goes the whole 9 yards as far as sharing is concerned, by offering cost management features built in so as to add to the ease and convenience of dividing up a mobile phone between more than one person. Cost management features include the pre-paid cost tracker application to keep tabs on who has been spending what on calls. I also rather like the multiple phone- book idea, allowing up to five people to store personal contact details and up to 200 numbers on a single phone.

Although the trend might well be in emerging countries only at the moment, and Nokia is targeting the handset in these less mature markets, there seems no real reason why it should not catch on elsewhere. Families on a budget are not limited to India, Pakistan and Vietnam after all...

Interesting. So would this work in the same way you can have more than one user account on a computer? And you have to select the account at Startup? In which case, wouldn't that take up more resources, and be more expensive?