Alfie Dennen poked me on instant messenger this morning, firing this statement at me: All things being equal, Nokia’s set to become the dominant global computing giant — within 3 years or so.
Hmm. That got the mind whirring.
‘Right,’ I said, as he pointed to Nokia’s 10m/units a day figure along with the increasing mobile marketplace across Africa and the developing world.
‘There’s some monopoly issues brewing,’ stated Alfie.
And I don’t disagree with him. I have a serious issue about the quality and usability of a lot of Nokia’s current products and services, but … but me no buts.
Alfie’s expanded on his initial statement below and on his own site.
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I’ve been pondering monopoly/antitrust laws and how these global issues might become exceedingly important to mobile phone manufacturers global strategy. Let’s take Nokia, who are at the moment the most bullish in shipping devices with powerful consumer applications, integral to their re-imagining of themselves as a ‘web company’.
As the mobile moves to become the dominant digital/web access device globally (Windows Mobile in the Dunk Tank – MobHappy), that Nokia (for example) may be open to the same kind of treatment as Microsoft was in it’s EU antitrust battle through its inclusion of Nokia Maps, Ovi etc as part of the OS the devices ship with….
I’m really thinking about Africa and the developing world here; Nokia could, potentially, be the global leader in computing within 5 years. Does this open up antitrust questions when considering their on handset application approach? Perhaps there is something in the way that mobile phones are actually defined in law that is very different to how computers are described/classified? I don’t know enough to comment without some research, but I wanted to air the thought. What do you think?
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What’s your view?