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361 degrees podcast – Episode 9: Nokia, what next?

Right this week things got a little bit interesting. Ben describes the debate between Rafe and I as, “a little bit heated” in the text below.

I think, at one point, I was screaming words to the effect of, “You’re completely WRONG” at Mr Blandford.

This is, you understand, all in the spirit of a healthy, robust debate.

I went off like a firecracker when Rafe reckoned that Nokia should hit the market with a boring mid-level Windows Phone handset that will (predictably) be torn apart by the media. I was explaining that I want Nokia to arrive with something that, at the very least, gives iPhone a run for it’s money. This is eminently possible.

Blandford was having none of it.

Neither was I.

And so we clashed. A lot.

If you haven’t taken the time to check out the joint podcast I do with Ben from WirelessWorker.net and Rafe from All About Symbian, this is the time to dive in.

Now it’s over to the standard introduction and description:

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Episode 9 – Nokia: What next? (mp3)

This week we talk about Nokia… How has it come to this and what next for the big firm?

We discuss:

  • The history behind the current problems.
  • How and why the firm has to change.
  • Windows Phone, the new strategy… and the parts which are often forgotten.
  • Whether Nokia can recover and what its first Windows Phone device will mean.

It all gets a bit heated this week… Ewan accuses Rafe of not seeing the warning signs and Rafe explains that the Silicon Valley view is too limited. Ben plays referee and offers some dire warnings about the short-term.

There are lots of ways to follow the podcast or you can subscribe using iTunes and other popular services.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

4 replies on “361 degrees podcast – Episode 9: Nokia, what next?”

Well I have to say based on following Rafe and yourself separately over some time, when it comes to Nokia or Symbian (or MeeGo, or Qt) I’d go with Rafe’s opinion any day. That said, I think Nokia’s WP device(s) will have to be AMAZING. There is a LOT of cynicism amongst Nokia and Symbian fans towards WP (in a nutshell: WP is crap, MS is evil. Juvenile opinions? No – recorded history.). Fans aren’t the main buyers someone will say. Sure, but despite a multi-hundred-million-dollar marketing campaign, WP has been a sales failure, no one wants it more or less. Yes, MS often soldier on with things until they succeed so that may be what happens here. But does possible future MS success with WP intersect with the WP Nokia needs at this moment in their history? Currently no. Mango release of WP may bring more to the table.

Also, the N9. Makes WP look ridiculous, and the decision to adopt WP even more so. N9, for the record, has the advantage of the huge Qt ecosystem – 100 million devices today (as many as Android today), another 150 million Symbian to come, and over time 1 billion S40 devices. Nice.

The fact remains, Nokia’s WP device(s) will be immediately up against Android 3 devices, iPhone 5’s, the Nokia N8+E7, forthcoming GHz+ Symbian devices with an upgraded Symbian, the N9, and so on. That market will tear WP apart and leave it for dead if Nokia+MS don’t come up with something special. Now Nokia have come up with something special in the N9. Nokia-haters Engadget class it as better than the iPhone 4 in every way pretty much! That’s incredible. WP devices need the same level of reception or the sinking ship WP will disappear beneath the waves…

BTW. Is there a specific reason why MS wouldn’t adopt Qt on WP and even Win8? They’d still get what they want (business-wise) and actually leverage their potential through Nokia’s “next billion” -strategy. Let’s not forget where the future lies: in the mobile internet and, thus, the developing world.

MS already ditched Silverlight, apparently for HTML5 + JavaScript. This combo just doesn’t cut it, as many would argue. Many would go even further and argue that Qt could be a better choise… Would using Qt not create a win-win -situation for both MS and NOK?

And yes, I am aware that Elop specifically said that Qt would not be used on WP7. A lot has changed since, tough. What is MS’s business after all?

Ahh do you guys see no problem at all with Nokia jumping on board with a mobile OS that had a .5 Billion dollar marketing budget, was sold all over the world on many manufacturers and only sold 1.6 million devices in Q1, half the amount Bada sold?

WP7 is the opposite of everything Nokia/Symbian/Maemo/Meego stand for, openness. No file manager, No drag and drop media, no mass storage device, no choice of search provider (ughh), no side loading apps, etc. No one sees a problem with this? Nokia loyalists like myself will never touch a WP7, no one sees a problem with this? I can’t even think of a single + that WP7 has, I think it looks cool but that’s all I’ve got. I literally have zero reason to purchase a WP7 phone over its competitors, even with the Mango update.

I think I heard you guys snicker when you mentioned people thought Elop was a trojan horse. What the hell are we suppose to think, he licensed Nokia’s IP to Microsoft for use in WP7 to be used by all Nokia’s competitors. Ovi Maps will no longer be Nokia exclusive but will instead be used by Nokia’s competitors. Nokia is using WP7 exclusively instead of using Android/Meego/WP7, why, can someone please tell me? Differentiation, ahh that makes zero sense. My god the guy used to work for Microsoft then he strikes a deal with Microsoft that is a complete mystery, the only thing we know is that Nokia will get “Billions”, so why did Nokia say they might not make a profit this year if they are getting “billions” from Microsoft? Because its probably not true, more likely Microsoft will be footing the bill for WP7/Nokia phone marketing. Is the deal exclusive? Who the hell knows, no one knows anything about this deal which is incredibly suspect. How about the fact that Meego Harmattan on the N9 is ready and looks amazing but the CEO is telling people not to buy it. What the hell are people supposed to think!

In 4 months none of you fools will be able to say “I told you so” even if Nokia manages to sell double the amount of WP7 phones that Samsung, LG, Dell and HTC sold combined in Q1 it will still be a failure, your move Nokia, I’m queuing up the “I told you so”.

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