Saturday, December 18, 2010

Where is Nokia heading?

Trying to figure out where the world largest manufacturer of cellular phones is going is difficult. The released Symbian^3, their latest operating system, on the Nokia N8. The Nokia N8 was supposed to be the only phone released with the Symbian^3 OS, before they would move to Symbia^4. Now Symbian^3 is being used in several phones, will be updated several times over the next year... and Symbian^4 is apparently discontinued. Nokia also has another OS, Meego. We have read that Meego is being developed for future Nokia smartphones and netbooks, but Symbian will be the platform for enterprises.

Symbian to fight RIM and MeeGo to face iOS and the Droid army? Whatever the plans are, it is clear that a new interface is needed.  CNET reveiwing the Android, iOS, Windows Phone 7, BlackBerry OS 6, Symbian 3, and the forthcoming Web OS 2.0 interfaces said that "Symbian 3 takes the Symbian OS in the right direction, we'll give it that, but compared to its other competitors, the OS (shown here on the Nokia N8) is still clunky and unintuitive." That is a sad state for a company that made its mark known for making the most user friendly phones. Nokia just did not make a good jump from keyboards to touch screens.

Nokia's flagship, the N8

Clearly, whether its Symbian or Meego, Nokia needs to release phones with a more modern interface tp catch up with iOS, Android and ven Windows Phone 7. When Nokia does that, they would have to back up that interface with 100,000 Apps. 

Clearly, Nokia wants to continue to be in the same category as as Research in Motion (RIM) with the BlackBerry and Apple with its iPhone, a develop continue to develop both software and hardware. Developing both software and hardware should mean more profits and in theory creates more efficient machines. 
Share of worldwide 2010 Q3 smartphone sales to end users by operating system, according to Gartner.

The reality is that, unless they can get something out soon, Nokia is most likely better off jumping on the Android bandwagon or even maybe even better, supporting the Windows Phone 7 platform, before it is relegated to selling feature phones. If the Nokia N8 had come out running Windows Phone 7, that would have been something to see. Nokia builds really good hardware, maybe they would be better focusing on that, before the forces from Cupertino and Droid hordes overrun them.

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