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« Bloodbath Results, Latest Apple Quarter - More evidence of Peak iPhone | Main | A Nuance on the Burning Platforms Memo - Nokia Board and Nokia Chairman Reprimanded Elop For That Mistake »

November 07, 2013

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Mike

I actually agree with you for once Tomi.

Is it possible for Nokia to sell Lumia then buy say Jolla??? As they carried on from Meego that would be an ideal return to native OS. (dont get me wrong i quite like WP8 - i got a Lumia 820, but the restrictions and rediculousness that microsoft imposed in so annoying)

I dont understand why the Nokia shareholders have been so complacent while Nokia has be torpedoed. Surely anyone associated with Elops special clause could have been forcably removed for acting against the companies best interests.

It just doesnt make any sense that there has been no action, is everyone just sheep these days trusting such people not to line their pockets and stab you in the back.

By the way Tomi, do you ever read comments on here, Iv never seen a reply or acknowledgment (could be wrong)

dunno

Tomi has no idea about modern smartphones if he praises those Nokia phones.
WP8 shits on them big time, but both WP8 and Meego is missing an ecosystem.
Nokia could hardly fix that on their own Microsoft is doing the right thing.

Also ask the Nokia board about that Elop bonus, Elop just did what he has been asked for.

Thomas

According to the deal terms, 32,000 employees are transferred to Microsoft and Nokia can't use the Nokia brand on mobile devices for a few years. Does Nokia retain the rights to MeeGo or are they sold with the rest? Does Nokia retain any smartphone personnel or manufacturing capabilities after the sale? In short, would relaunching a MeeGo line of devices really be a viable strategy?

"As part of the transaction, Nokia will grant Microsoft a 10 year non-exclusive license to its patents as of the time of the closing, and Microsoft will grant Nokia reciprocal rights related to HERE services. In addition, Nokia will grant Microsoft an option to extend this mutual patent agreement to perpetuity. Of the total purchase price of EUR 5.44 billion, EUR 3.79 billion relates to the purchase of substantially all of the Devices & Services business, and EUR 1.65 billion relates to the mutual patent agreement and future option.

...
Microsoft has agreed to a 10 year license arrangement with Nokia to use the Nokia brand on current Mobile Phones products. Nokia will continue to own and maintain the Nokia brand. Under the terms of the transaction, Microsoft has agreed to a 10 year license arrangement with Nokia to use the Nokia brand on current and subsequently developed products based on the Series 30 and Series 40 operating systems. Upon the closing of the transaction, Nokia would be restricted from licensing the Nokia brand for use in connection with mobile device sales for 30 months and from using the Nokia brand on Nokia's own mobile devices until December 31, 2015."

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi Mike, dunno and George

Mike - thanks for mentioning Jolla. I had initially meant to add that part, I forgot as I was writing the blog, I now added my thoughts about it (pls re-read the above, am sure a deal can be made that helps both Jolla and Nokia now)

About answering - haha, yeah, when we set up this blog with Alan Moore, we didn't expect the traffic we now have, and we pledged to reply to every comment. For many years we did that. Recently its become impossible, we get more than a million visitors per year and very heavy level of comments as you can see.. I still read absolutely every comment, and really enjoy them. I try to reply to some, definitely not all, from time to time..

dunno - so you've never tried one if that is what you say. I would delete your comment as a Microsoft troll but you then admit that Windows Phone doesn't have an ecosystem so I trust you are a sensible person so I'll let the comment stand. As to MeeGo missing ecosystem, as so does Windows Phone as you pointed out, MeeGo can't really do worse, if its branded the same Nokia and sold in same channels and the devices are similar in specs etc. The relevant point that you ignored, is that there is an active boycott against Windows Phone devices by the carriers/operators. For those operators/carriers at least, who sell other Nokia phones - Asha featurephones for example - for them any MeeGo devices now would be the answer they have been looking for. I am not suggesting Nokia build its future on MeeGo, I suggest they can sell them now, in one Quarter, if they wanted, because they are ready, have been designed, would be made in Nokia factories that are idling, and while not cutting-edge, also Apple sells older iPhone models quite successfully just cutting their prices. MeeGo models would be a stop-gap step now, to help boost sales numbers and prepare for the Android shift. By the way, apps developed with Qt for MeeGo would also run natively on Android..

George - I trust you haven't used it to say that. And please note, I added a comment about the N950 - that would be now Nokia's flagship non-Windows device.

Thanks for the comments, please keep them coming

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Vikram

Have to disagree with Tomi and also partially agree.

- If Elop had made Nokia a success he would have made far more than the 25M that he gets for leaving Nokia in the MSFT deal. There is no sneaky conspiracy here

- MeeGo's own technology leader said that it wasn't competitive with Android or iOS and wasn't ready to be so in the short term. MeeGo just wasn't good enough. Again, the guy running it said so.

- I agree that going to Windows exclusively was a mistake looking back

- I completely believe that if Nokia put out Android handsets that they would overtake Samsung. Nobody likes Samsung and people still love Nokia - Still! - Nokia still means great design and quality hardware

- I agree that they should still try to get a better price and go try some Android handsets

- I blame the prior leadership and the board much more than Elop - they left him with a ship with a bomb about to blow up in open water. The burning platform memo may have put fire to the ship, but it was already about to sink. The same thing happened to Blackberry. What killed Nokia was not having a iOS/Android competitive OS and Nokia didn't have the software chops to deliver it.

Winter

@Vikra
Going WP was seen as a mistake AT THE TIME. The stock price collapsed the next day as investers saw the deal for the disaster it was.

WonTheLottery

@LeeBase
"At least you're consistent. Nokia good, Msft bad"

The sales of Windows Phones proves that to be true, NOKIA are the only company capable of selling them. What happened when Samsung put Windows Phone on the same excellent hardware as their hugely successful Android phones? They tanked of course (heck, even Samsung's Bada outsold Windows Phone until they pulled the plug on it). When given the choice of the same hardware running Android or Windows Phone the overwhelming majority choose Android.

And you know what makes it worse? Android isn't even that good! In fact it's really shockingly mediocre, it's just the best of a very rank bunch.

Mindy

Personally I agree wholeheartedly with Tomi about the sales potential of a Nokia or Nokia Jolla branded smartphone with a sliding QWERTY keyboard running Meego, Sailfish or Android. If they came to the market with a phone like that, I'd do anything to buy it as soon as it came out. Almost no matter the price, even though I normally consider paying over 300 Euro for a smartphone way too much money. When I see something I need to have and it's good quality and meets my demands perfectly, I am willing to pay more than I can strictly speaking actually afford. I just spend less on something else for a while to make up for it. I might go as far as 600-700 Euro for such a phone.

For me the must-have phone would have the following:
- designed by Nokia or ex-Nokia people and produced under their management (Nokia as a part of Microsoft won't count): the only people I trust to be able to combine durability and usability with good features on a phone. Drop an Asian phone, throw it in garbage as it's beyond repair. Drop a Nokia phone on your big toe and it's your toe that breaks or at least gets seriously bruised (tested long time ago, left me walking with crutches for a week).
- full QWERTY keypad which slides open. I like seeing what I write and two-thumb typing on keypad is faster than typing on touch screen. Less hitting wrong letters as well as the physical keys are more in proportion with the actual size of adult fingers.
- Preferably Sailfish OS or Meego. Sailfish is Android-compatible without actually being Android, so I won't be as annoyingly tied to Google as I would be on Android. Probably it would be more secure and less prone to malware than Android, which is famous for its crappy security. I hate the way I'm so tied to Microsoft on my Lumia and I wouldn't want to get tied to another American giant either. The ecosystem so valued by one of the American fanboys in the comments a couple of posts ago (ie. all key services under one provider) is what I hate. I want to be able to mix and match and use whichever services I like from whichever provider I like instead of being forced to use services I don't like because they just happen to be the ones tied to the ecosystem. I value my privacy and the less tied I am to a single big American corporation, the better. Sailfish is open source and European, so there is at least a chance that there are no NSA backdoors built into it.
- touch screen of course, I've grown to like it when I surf the Internet or use the navigation apps etc. I just don't like it as the only input option when typing something. I can't see what I've written because of the virtual keyboard and it's annoying.
- nice camera, wouldn't need to be the ultimate camera but the better the camera, the nicer a bonus it would be.
- Detachable battery. Never had a phone without a detachable battery and never gonna buy one either. No detachable battery = no way of forcing a reboot when the phone freezes on you and does absolutely nothing. Also when you drop your phone (happens to me about every 2 days), the kinetic energy of the fall is used for a large part into separating the different parts from one another, thus protecting your phone from damage.
- SD card slot.
- Nokia navigation apps. I LOVE THEM!!!!!!
- Being able to install Angry Birds on it, I just love those crazy birds and I'm so proud they're Finnish. I don't really need any other games than just Angry Birds in different versions. A sudoku or some word games might be fun too, but that's the extent of my interest for gaming on the phone.
- surfing the internet and connecting to known WiFi networks with the ease that I now experience on my Lumia. That's the one and just about the only thing which is truly better in Windows Phone 8 than it was on Symbian.
- Possibility to do the following which I was able to do on my old N97 with Symbian (and to an extent in my old dumbphones too) and currently unable to do on the freaking Windows Phone 8:
- choose the volume for different sorts of sounds independently of one another. I went to the sauna at my gym the other day. A couple of years ago I used to put my phone in silent mode with the exception of alert sounds. I could enjoy the sauna knowing I won't be disturbed by calls but I knew thanks to the alert when I had to start getting dressed to be out of the sauna on time. Now I just had to leave the phone on and anyone could have disturbed me by calling.
- have the timer start running when I want it and having it run exactly the number of minutes and seconds I want it to.
- choose myself where I want to store my files on the phone, preferably even choosing to install some apps on the SD card. It drives me mad that I have plenty of space on the SD card but I have to pick and choose very carefully which apps to install. Installing 1 new app if it's a bit bigger app will require me to discard 1 or more old ones (some of which I actually find worth keeping).

I keep hoping and dreaming this will once be an actual phone available on the market. I want the phone of my dreams!!!!

Giacomo Di Giacomo

Yesterday morning, at work, I made an instant poll with the other 3 people who were in the room. I asked: "Who would buy a Nokia Android phone, if it were available?". Two out of the three people said they would immediately. 50% of the sample. It's not a very significant sample, but it does have some significance nevertheless. Out of the four people present, two (the ones who said yes) are currently using a Nexus 4, the third one a Galaxy Nexus, and the fourth one (i. e. myself) a Nokia 808 (currently my 603, since my 808 is being repaired) and a Zopo ZP100 clone (running Android). This means that, if a Nokia Android phone were available, the Nokia share would boost from 20% to 60%.
As I keep saying, though, you do not need billions of Euros to make a Nokia Android phone. Take that pretty Lumia 625 and port Android to it. All you need to change is the front glass silkscreen. And, while you are at it, also license Sailfish and port it to the same hardware (or have Jolla port it, they would be more efficient than bloated Nokia). Then take the Asha 500/501/502/503 and port Symbian (yes, Symbian) to it. That is a perfect smartphone for emerging countries. Symbian runs happily on those phones given a little more RAM (they have the same specifications as an 808, except for RAM amount) and they would sell for the same cheap price (since no royalties are required), with all the features of a Lumia and something more (like real multitasking).
These are just examples. Anyway, anything I can think of is better than selling the division to Microsoft. If it really were in the interest of Nokia, the feature phone division would not be sold, since there is no reason to do so. However, the board were very confident that the sale will go through, which leads me to think that Microsoft has secured enough votes. I also noticed a significant increase in Nokia share value lately, which could mean that somebody is collecting stock from the market, maybe to get voting power in the next shareholder meeting.
Finally, a bit of conspiracy theory. Nokia was the only major smartphone producer whose products were not under American control. The fall of Nokia has been incredibly fast and caused by apparently incredibly stupid choices by its CEO and BoD, which went on for years despite evidence. NSA spied people through Google, Apple and Microsoft. Jorma Ollila seems to have heavy responsibility in the choice and support of Elop. Jorma Ollila is a member of the Bilderberg club. The Bilderberg club has its main headquarters in the USA. I am not a fan of conspiracy, but I see lots of coincidences here.
In any case, EU or Finland must step in and block the deal. Nokia is a major asset for Finnish economy and for European technology. It cannot be left to destruction because of a bunch of people. Tens of thousands of Nokia employees (mainly European) will be left without a job once the WP project folds down or is downsized (which will happen, since the only reason for which 99% of Lumia phones are sold is the Nokia brand and not Windows, and the Nokia brand will be soon removed from them).

Mikko

"Someone else WANTS to buy the dumbphones unit!!"

I wonder. Take a look at the rate the Nokia dumbphone sales are declining: a decrease of 19 million units year-on-year in the last quarter. It's not a reflection on the quality of Nokia's products, but just the fact that in a couple of years, dumbphones will be about as great a business as landline phones are today.

ashok pai

what are the finnish people doing ? the government ? the shareholders ? if they are quiet about it then, nothing can be done about this dastardly move by elop and microsoft. what do you do when the people are resigned to such corporate hustlers like elop ?

Kevin P

I have to question, is there really a big market for QWERTY smartphones? It's kind of an article of faith among Meego fans, but based on the evidence I don't think it's actually true. Motorola, HTC, Samsung, Sony etc all used to make QWERTY android phones, but as far as I'm aware none of them have released a new one in the last year-and-a-half or more. Even after they've seen that all their major competitors have left that segment and they could easily take the whole "QWERTY android" market for themselves, they're still not interested. As far as I'm aware, the only company that's launched a keyboard smartphone in the last year is BlackBerry, and their sales were disastrous (although to be fair that's not necessarily due to the keyboard; nobody wants the Z10 either). There might have been some low-profile launches from minor manufacturers, but none of them have seen any serious success.

Surely that tells you something. These guys aren't stupid, and they're locked in fierce competition, doing anything they can to grab market share from each other. You can bet that if they thought they could make money selling a phone with a physical keyboard, they'd fall over themselves to make one. Basically I think that Elop's decision to block plans for a QWERTY model was perfectly sensible, and that even if Nokia decided to relaunch the N950 or a QWERTY Jollaphone it would be an even bigger flop than Windows Phone.

To anticipate the obvious response: yes, there are still millions of people still using QWERTY on Symbian or Asha phones, but when they upgrade to a more modern smartphone they buy touchscreen phones, not QWERTY. Part of that is because there are few/no new QWERTY smartphones, but manufacturers used to make these devices and have all but stopped. Why? The only reasonable answer must be that they weren't selling enough to be profitable, and there's no reason to think that Nokia would do any better in this niche than Motorola or Samsung.

zlutor

yet another synergy: http://mynokiablog.com/2013/11/08/jolla-uses-here-platform/

Not so surprising decision, anyway...

zlutor

@Mikko: "a decrease of 19 million units year-on-year in the last quarter" - natural consequence of falling brand name (beside the fact world is moving from dumb to smartphones).

But it would be much less if Nokia were flying like before. Decline is inevitable but it will stabilize at some point. Smartphones are not the solution for all problems: there are areas where long battery life, durability and some - limited - Internet access is needed/enough...

On the other hand I do not know whether separation would be good idea. You know, just like in case of Volkswagen: they have the common brands (WV, Skoda, Seat) that benefit from the premium brands (Audi, Porsche, etc.) of the big company...

I think Nokia should not do anything but include(!) Android into the portfolio and they are on the track quickly. Customer would decide... :-)

On the other hand after reading such news like this - http://digiday.com/platforms/google-tracking/ - I do not really want to use any Google device/service any more. It seems Google does not pay too much attention to our privacy... ;-(

So, go Jolla, go! :-)

gjw

"Nokia's handset unit is not this bad, it was deliberately damaged by the past CEO"

You make it sound as if Elop is out already, but he still is Nokia's CEO, right?

zlutor

@gjw: No, he is not the CEO any more (there is an acting one). Elop is head of devices department 'only'...

foo

Unrelated news -- but interesting for those following the mobile OS wars:

===== Android Is Gaming’s Future, And The One OS To Rule Them All, Says Nvidia CEO =====

Nvidia has some side bets on Surface and Windows RT, but Android is the really exciting OS of the future, according to CEO and co-founder Jen-Hsun Huang on an investor call today to discuss the company’s latest financial results. Huang pointed to the Shield as its means of furthering the growing Android gaming ecosystem, but games are truly only one part of the picture for Android’s bright future, he believes.

Android’s potential goes beyond gaming into virtually every corner of connected living, however, says Huang. Tegra’s presence in automotive systems and set-top boxes, data centers, all-in-one PCs and more make it the perfect platform for the future, Huang noted, calling Google’s mobile OS “the most disruptive operating system that we’ve seen in a few decades.”

http://techcrunch.com/2013/11/08/android-is-gamings-future-and-the-one-os-to-rule-them-all-says-nvidia-ceo/

Winter

@Leebase
"well, he can't exactly say iOS is the future of gaming if Apple isn't buying Nvidia's chips"

The fact he is willing to say it will not be WP is telling us a lot about how the mighty have fallen.

There was a time that companies made public apologies for having dared to show a Snapdragon netbook running Android instead of Windows.

Microsoft strikes back at Linux netbook push
http://blogs.computerworld.com/microsoft_strikes_back_at_linux_netbook_push

The very next day, Asus' chairman, Jonney Shih, after sharing a news conference stage with Microsoft corporate VP, OEM Division, Steven Guggenheimer, apologized for the Android Eee PC being shown.

Also:
http://www.linux-netbook.com/video/snapdragon-based-asus-eee-pc-running-android

Giacomo Di Giacomo

Baron95, it is the second time you post this bullshit. Usually your posts are not worth a reply, but I will provide my opinion on this.
1. Nothing is done in secret? The deal has been announced after having been signed. Nokia will have to pay a fine if it pulls back.
2. and 3. How many groups have enough money to do this? How much time has been given to consider this? External bidders, moreover, have the extra charge of the fine to be paid for breaching the deal with Microsoft.
4. Nokia is not Blackberry, and we are not talking about competing with Google but cooperating with it.
5. Yes, they got a share price bump after the post-Elop fall. How great. They got a special dividend which will not compensate the past and future dividends lost because of Elop, and those that would come in the next years from Nokia selling Android phones.
Tomi is emotionally involved but most of what he says is true. Unlike you, who are also emotionally involved in bashing Tomi, but usually with bullshit.

Willebra

There is the Nokita memo -group, but they have little time to gather the required financing.

Then there is also the convertible bonds Microsoft got. Don't know the exact terms, but if the 1,5B euro (or in that range) is not repaid soon, then Microsoft gets a big chunk of Nokia, possibly becomes the biggest shareholder. So it's not an easy walkout.

Willebra

The Nokita offer can be found at nokita.fi or nokitaphones.com. Haven't generated much noise recently. Would like to hear Tomi's comments on that one.

RottenApple

@Leebase:

Read the fine print. He doesn't say 'Android phones are the future of gaming' but 'Android is the future of gaming'. In other words, he considers Android the OS of choice for future gaming platforms other than mobile phones (or tablets.)

How can Apple compete here?


Anyway, continue your useless talk about 'premium customers' and ignore the fact that mobile gaming goes way beyond that group. Only American companies whoes vision end at the country's borders still think of iOS as #1. As an employee of a German game development company, let me reassure you that we consider Android far, far more important by now.

foo

@Leebase "well, he can't exactly say iOS is the future of gaming if Apple isn't buying Nvidia's chips"

The problem with iOS is that Apple won't license it, so, it will never be an industry-supported OS.

That leaves us with Windows (the established player) and Android (the new entrant). The fact that Nvidia's CEO singles out Android as being the future is significant.

B a r o n 9 5

So many things are wrong with this analysis....

1 - Nothing is done in secret as Tomi claims. This is usually how companies/divisions are sold. You announce ONE deal, and see if competing offers materialize. None so far has.

2 - Nothing, prevents Tomi, any group, existing Nokia shareholders from making a bid to pay more than Microsoft. If there was such a bid, the board would be obligated to consider which offer is best for shareholders.

3 - The fact that there are no competing bidders, pretty much means that Microsoft is overpaying for it.

4 - Given the recent news that Blackberry bidders could not even find anyone to bid above $4.7B of the inside bid, and the inside bidders could not even get the deal financed, means that there is no appetite in the market for anyone to go compete against Apple, Google, Samsung.

5 - The deal is great for Nokia shareholders who got a share price bump and will get a special dividend out of it.

There is nothing to think about. It is a good deal for shareholders and it will be approved by shareholders by big margins.

Moral of the story: *always* ignore analysis from someone who is totally and completely emotionally invested in the subject. In this context, you should pretty much ignore any analysis from Tomi on Nokia. He has proven convincingly that is totally and completely emotionally invested in certain things being true, regardless of reality.

Luckily, investors are simply going to vote with the board and approve the deal.

Winter

@Boron95
"Moral of the story: *always* ignore analysis from someone who is totally and completely emotionally invested in the subject."

We could make a cheap shot about applying this to you. However, the basic premisses of your statement is completely wrong. But it is characteristic for people in the USA:Ignore the message if you do not like the messenger.

I do not care about Tomi's emotions when I read his analysis. And I do not need your "advice" on how to think.

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