Who Will Save Nokia?

So far, Nokia’s comeback – where they bet everything on the Windows Phone operating system – has been an unmitigated disaster:

– In late 2011 they launched their Lumia 800 smartphone, which was immediately out-sold 100 to 1 by the Samsung Galaxy S2 in the UK … a country known to traditionally love Nokia
– Most large smartphone manufacturers have Windows Phone handsets available & none have managed to increase Microsoft’s share of the smartphone market
– No Windows Phone device, no matter what the specifications, can get close to the javascript performance of iOS/Android devices due to inefficient browser software and lack of support for multi-core processors
– In a market place where all leading devices have dual-cores or even quad-cores this year, the Windows Phone OS cannot support any of them
– The Nokia Lumia 800 has performance comparable with the HTC Google Nexus One, launched two years ago!
– Nokia’s famed battery life did not carry over to their Lumia handsets, forcing them to release software ‘fixes’ shortly after launch
– The Nokia Lumia 800 is priced the same – without contract – as handsets such as the Motorola Droid RAZR which have far higher specifications

Selling at a loss to clear stock?

It was perhaps only 5/6 years ago when wild horses couldn’t drag me away from having a Nokia phone. I loved everything Nokia, their designs were superior, their battery life, their reception, their camera, their OS … everything that mattered! Even when the first version of the Motorola RAZR became popular I could not be tempted away.

But now, Nokia’s new CEO – an ex-Microsoft employee – has unnecessarily gambled the future of the company on the success of Windows Phone instead of hedging their bets. Lets be clear, VERY few smartphone manufacturers outside of Apple only support a single OS. It would not take considerable resources to release exactly the same hardware used in the Nokia N9 or Lumia 900 with a version of Android installed. Microsoft have clearly negotiated/bought exclusivity in an attempt to buy market share.

The media, and many ‘expert’ Web sites have raved about Nokia’s new phones. No-one seems to be paying attention – they simply aren’t selling to anyone other than die-hard Nokia or Microsoft fans.

Whether or not Nokia’s board will be able to attempt a U-turn soon enough and introduce an Android range of smartphones to save the company is yet to be seen. An awful lot of people believe that Nokia’s failure will suit Microsoft and Nokia will end up selling themselves to MS. In the meantime I continue to watch both Nokia’s and Microsoft’s market share get gobbled up by Android and iOS and wonder what on earth Nokia’s board must be thinking …

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