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« Ballmer Aftermath Part 3 - Ballmer replacement and specifically Elop? (Spoiler alert: Elop won't become MS CEO) | Main | Another Death in Smartphone Bloodbath - Windows Phone strategy so failed, now Nokia handset unit sold - to MIcrosoft »

August 28, 2013

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Ben

Tomi, as always, thank you for the very insightful blog.

I'm curious to know, what do you think this means for the job market and the economy as a whole?

It seems that already dominate companies will have new and/or bigger departments focused on mobile. Aside from your coders, small developers, and top tier MBA's, will there be jobs for the masses? It seems likely that any new efficiencies created by mobile will go straight to the corporate bottom line and shareholders.

Tomi T Ahonen

Great question Ben

Well, mobile as an industry is the most complex giant industry yet. It takes the complexity of the internet businesses and adds the telecoms complexity layer and the mobility (cellular) complexity plus the vastly more diverse scale of handset types vs somewhat standardized PC form factors, screen sizes etc we see on the internet side.

Complexity in the short run means employment opportunity, certainly. Secondly, while many like to repeat the mantra 'the internet changed everything' even though it didn't change everything - ie the illiterate farmers and fishermen and lumberjacks etc in the Emerging World countries didn't see their daily jobs any different before the internet and after it. But mobile IS changing everything, even the lives of those illiterate farmers, fishermen etc are all now being improved via mobile phones and connectivity...

So the range of industries being disrupted is far greater than it was with the internet. So this means, as we've seen for example McDonald's issuing virtual currency - so McD is now competing with banks. Or Google Glass now becoming a rival of eyeglass brands (I don't even know those haha) or Apple rumored to go into the watchmaking business (iWatch) while Nikon just hinted they could release a smartphone. The cannibalization threats are coming from 'every side' in this battle, Google the internet company suddenly offers us Android as an operating system and only four years later Android sells on more computing devices (including smartphones) than Windows, who used to 'own' the computing environment just a few years ago.

These cross-industry opportunities and threats give rise to new disciplines of competence. Who could have guessed in 2003 that Nokia would one day become the world's bestselling camera brand (now replaced by Samsung obviously). Or that Vodafone's mobile money system could take over Kenya's economy so thoroughly that 11% of its current economy is 100% sustained by M-Pesa, so in other words, those perhaps 11% of Kenya jobs, weren't viable before M-Pesa..

I think in the short-to-mid term, till end of this decade at least, the net effect of mobile will be an addition to work force and often good well-paying middle-class jobs. Eventually, its all digital, its all Moore's Law, so eventually those jobs will become mostly automated and will vanish, just how the secretarial pools at major companies disappeared with the introduction of word processing and the PC and internet email could do the work of an army of typists, at a tiny fraction of the costs, and with greater accuracy and faster...

The World Bank calculated that mobile phone penetration rate is the biggest single booster to national GDP growth in the Emerging World countries, so at least at this point in time, this is a significant gain to employment too..

Tomi Ahonen :-)

vvaz

OT: Mission accomplished!

ObjectiveObserver

It happened. It bloody finally happened!! Tomi, I have been lurking at your site for years and you are truly one of the only people who saw the truth along all this time! Enjoy your victory. Nokia is dead and sold to Microsoft.

Symbolset

Microsoft to acquire Nokia Devices and Services. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval by Nokia’s shareholders, regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/press/2013/Sep13/09-02AnnouncementPR.aspx

"Nokia expects that Stephen Elop, Jo Harlow, Juha Putkiranta, Timo Toikkanen, and Chris Weber would transfer to Microsoft at the anticipated closing of the transaction. Nokia has outlined these changes in more detail in a separate release issued today."

Elop returns to Redmond with the head of Nokia just in time to be Microsoft CEO. What a strange world we live in, eh Tomi?

Baron95

Deal already in motion - Microsoft is buying Nokia's devices and services businesses and Elop is coming back to Microsoft and is a contender for CEO.

No Tomi - Elop did not get fired - he got "promoted".

Baron95

@ObjectiveObserver - Nokia was not sold to Microsoft. Only the good parts - the much trimmer and free of fat Devices and Services + patent licenses are being acquired. The boat anchor employment office NSN, thankfully remains behind.

Elop gets back to the US to lead what is now Microsofts largest division and be first contender for Microsoft CEO.

The Recusant

***

Tomi, you have been proven correct: this moron Elop is a Trojan Horse for M$! He purposely wanted to cheapen Nokia's market value so M$ can buy the company at a lower price! See this latest news today confirming that M$ would buy Nokia:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-23940171

I hate M$ now more than I hate crApple iFruitcakes! I will never buy a Windows Phone even if it's made by Nokia! Like you Tomi, I also carry a Nokia 808 PV now as my primary phone.


***

Jan

I am totally excited about how mobiles can make life easier for us, normal people :) I am writing this in China using my 5.7" phablet. I am able to check my destination or track my walk so I don't get lost or find easier way. Also, have you tried negotiating a fare with Chinese taxi drivers? My mobile is my best tool.i know the distance and they can't rip me off that easily. I am staying connected and answer my work emails in real time. I am able to book things even when moving 300km/h on their high speed trains. I don't have to rely on Wi-Fi either. No longer I need to carry laptop or even tablet. It fits in my pocket, this window in to the world. Also, suggestion for an app. Some of the guides here have limited English. What about an app for sightseeing. It gives you as much info as you want andcould work similar to city lens - camera provides context.

Baron95

This is the presentation describing the deal to Wall Street. Awesome outcome.

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/Press/2013/Sep13/StrategicRationale.aspx

Really exciting. Lumia has 9 markets with over 10% market share and outsells Blackberry in 34 markets already.

Tester

You really buy this nonsense, do you?

It's pure marketing bullshit aimed at stupid investors to hide the ugly truth, nothing more, nothing less.

The 'strategic rationale' is that Nokia was dying and Microsoft couldn't afford losing them.

Sander van der Wal

Microsoft is not allowed to lie about that kind of stuff. They are presenting their case in the most flattering way possible, which is allowed. And which is a practice everybody has been practising, including Nokia.

Erik

Nice post. However, when discussing this post a question came up.

You write: "He told the reason why Apple rushed its iconic mobile phone handset to the market - it wasn't because of Nokia or Blackberry or Samsung or other smartphone makers, no. It was because Apple noticed that Sony's Walkman branded musicphones were cannibalizing Apple's iPod music player sales. Yes, the iPhone was a 'defensive move' by Apple, to protect is strong music player market in 2007, not an offensive move to try to capture a slice of the smartphone space."

Do you have any source for that statement? It seems a bit bold and some people believe you're very wrong on this. I've heard so many stories that claims the iPhone was targeting traditional smartphone makers so it is hard to believe which is true.

Thanks!

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi Erik

Haha, I tried and couldn't find it.. I know I have it on this blog. So I omitted the name and found it.. My bad. Not Tim Cook. Was Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer who said in Apple July 2009 quarterly results conference call:

"I would like to discuss how we are looking at this market. We have three categories of what we call pocket products. Traditional MP3 players, iPod Touch, and iPhone. For traditional MP3 players, which includes Shuffle, Nano, and Classic, we saw a year-over-year decline which we internally had forecasted to occur. This is one of the original reasons we developed the iPhone and the iPod Touch. We expect our traditional MP3 players to decline over time as we cannibalize ourselves with the iPod Touch and the iPhone."

So yeah, sorry about that, wasn't Tim Cook, I have to go correct that. It was Apple's CFO instead..

Tomi Ahonen :-)

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Available for Consulting and Speakerships

  • Available for Consulting & Speaking
    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Hong Kong but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit www.tomiahonen.com Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

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