Finnish handset vendor Nokia is gearing up to go head to head against Apple, revealing this week that its touch screen 5800 ‘Tube’ handset will be available from the end of the month.

The Tube handset will be available from Nokia stores and high street retailers including Carphone Warehouse and Phones4U at the end of the month. Orders placed on the Nokia website will arrive in early February.

The device will cost £249 before operator subsidies.

The 5800 boasts a full VGA, 3.2″ widescreen display, with a 16 by 9 aspect ratio and 30 frames-per-second playback. Taking advantage of touchscreen technology, Nokia has streamlined the user interface to make use of commonly accessed applications and contacts, as well as the Ovi platform and of course the Nokia Music Store.

Under the hood there is HSDPA connectivity, GPS, 8GB memory, a 3.5mm jack and surround sound stereo speakers as well as a 3.2 megapixel camera. The web browser notably supports Flash Lite 3.