Nokia has launched three smartphones running a new version of Symbian, proof that the Finnish vendor is still keeping the software platform close to its heart. 

The Nokia 700, 701 and 600 are equipped with single-tap NFC technology – new with Symbian Belle – allowing users to share content and pair their phones with other NFC and Bluetooth kit. Symbian Belle also adds a pull down menu and taskbar for viewing notifications similar to Android and gives users more ability to personalise the UI.

Belle has emerged just a week after the last Symbian update – Anna – was made available for download. Nokia VP Ilari Nurmi says the further development of the platform demonstrates that Nokia is committed to developing Symbian for the time being.

Back in February Nokia announced a partnership with Microsoft to develop future smartphones using Windows Phone 7 technology but Nokia plans to continue the development of Symbian until 2012. Nurmi emphasised that Symbian remains important to the company.  “These will not be the last products or updates we will deliver on Symbian," he said.

The Nokia 700 (pictured) is the company’s smallest touchscreen smartphone measuring just 50 cubic centimetres and weighing 96g. Equipped with a 1Ghz processor, a 3.2 inch Amoled screen and HD video camera, the 700 is pitched as an environmentally conscious device with a long battery life and being constructed from eco-friendly materials.

The 701 meanwhile is billed as having the world’s brightest mobile display, suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.  It has a 3.5 inch screen, a 1Ghz processor, an 8MP camera and 8GB of internal memory that can be expanded to 40GB with the addition of a microSD card.

Finally, the entertainment-focused 600 is capable of 60 hours of music playback, wirelessly streaming music using NFC technology and playing it on a powerful on-board loudspeaker. Although slightly cheaper than the other two Belle devices, the 600 still has a 1Ghz processor, HD video camera and 5MP camera with LED flash.

There were no specific details released regarding pricing, launch dates or carrier availability.