Nokia: World War III

Nokia hopes to challenge smartphone rivals Apple and Android with its new line-up of Symbian phones, the handset maker’s head of markets, Niklas Savander, said Tuesday. Engadget has the latest from Nokia World.

Nokia has introduced three new smartphones joining its current flagship N8 smartphone in using the Symbian operating system: the smaller C6, the thinner and more expensive C7, and the big and business-oriented E7.

The C6 is the smallest of the bunch but comes with the new ClearBlack Display, which provides deeper black colors.

The long-awaited N8, will cost some EUR370 before taxes and subsidies, comes with a premium quality camera. The E7, selling at EUR495, is aimed at business users and offers both a touch screen and slide-out keyboard, while the C7, at EUR335 has a more classic Nokia design. The C6, selling around EUR260, has a more feminine design which should appeal to female users, Savander added.

The first Symbian^3 device, is the Nokia N8. It plays high definition video through your phone to a wide screen TV, switching apps with a flick.

The Symbian Foundation was announced in June 2008 and came into existence in 2009. Its objective was to publish the source for the entire Symbian platform under the OSI- and FSF-approved Eclipse Public License (EPL).

Nokia aims to sell 50 million smartphones built on the upgraded Symbian 3 platform. Around 100 operators have signed up to offer the new N8 phone, and many have also chosen to offer the new E7, C7 and C6 phones, as well, the handset maker’s head of markets, Niklas Savander, said Tuesday.

Nokia also unveiled today improvements to its developer tools making it simpler, easier and more lucrative for people to build apps.

Highlights include:

  • Significant enhancements to the Nokia Qt Software Development Kit (SDK) resulting in a 70 percent reduction in the number of lines of code required
  • Improvements in the Ovi Store user experience including a new look and feel, making it faster and making apps easier to find;
  • Lower barrier of entry and increased monetization opportunities for developers, including free Java and Symbian signing, in-app purchase, improved revenue share, and advanced developer analytics.

Nokia says developers can distribute apps to approximately 175 million Nokia Symbian smartphones – the largest smartphone user base in the world.

Apple is projected to sell 130 million iOS-based mobile devices per year by 2014, as Android hits 259M and Symbian hits 264M, according to Gartner. Gartner also sees Microsoft’s Windows Phone relegated to sixth place, behind the MeeGo platform created by Intel and Nokia.

Of course, four years is a long time, notes C/Net. Last week Nokia announced a new CEO, Stephen Elop, former president of Microsoft’s Business Division. Nokia said that Elop will help lead its “substantial transformation” from a hardware company to a software company. Yesterday, Nokia announced that Anssi Vanjoki, Executive Vice President and a member of Nokia Group Executive Board has given notice of resignation from Nokia. Vanjoki, currently heads Nokia’s Mobile Solutions unit.

Of course Nokia has something neither Apple nor Android have; a business to build a trillion dollar 4G cellular infrastructure. In that business Ericsson is the world’s largest maker of cellular gear, followed by Nokia Siemens Networks which is roughly tied with Huawei for 2nd and 3rd place.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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