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February 12, 2014

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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Normandy? Mview? Nokia X? Whats the Thinking Behind Android Based Smartphone by Nokia... Now?:

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cornelius

@Kevin

1. That's exactly what they put on those cheap Android devices. Older versions of Android (even Gingerbread some of them). Does anyone know which Android version will Nokia put on their phones? I suspect it is an older version.
2. In Nokia's case I don't think that the WP licence fees mattered in any way because they were offset by the 1 billion per year subsidy from Microsoft. Remember, even with massive subsidies from Microsoft, Nokia is unable to sell these phones for a profit. Nokia lost money even during the fourth quarter (the shopping season).

LeeBase

Fun fun, we all get to make predictions, and then find out in mere weeks.

Here's mine. If this is NOT a false rumor (which if it wasn't for the WSJ, I'd be sure it was).

1. This is NOT the Nokia Android phone you've all been having wet dreams waiting for. It will not be a Google Android phone with access to the million Android apps.

2. It will not be a premium phone with great camera competing with the Lumia line.

3. If it exists at all, it's going to be an Asha class phone. Asha on top of Android AOSP instead of S40. A dumb phone.

4. Will Msft keep it? No, I'm betting Msft sells off the dumb phone business.

Wayne Borean


But will Nokia actually make an announcement about an Android Phone?

Many of the comments had logical reasons it could happen. I personally don't have any idea whether this is likely or not.

What we do know is that Microsoft has been loosing market share for a long time, and that Nokia made a huge mistake betting on Windows Phone. Release of an Android Phone by Nokia could have some interesting implications.

Let's wait and see how this plays out.

Wayne

jj

@cornelius

According to this it should be Android 4.4 KitKat so it will run fine with 512Mb memory and dual-core processor.

http://wmpoweruser.com/nokia-normandy-shows-up-at-vietnamese-retailer-claims-google-play-access/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+WmPowerUser+%28WMPowerUser%29

Kevin P

@Cornelius: Even those are far closer to Lumina's specs than to Asha's. A typical bottom-end Android example (based on searching Jingdong, a popular Chinese e-commerce site) is the Coolpad 5860, which is running Gingerbread and costs 299 RMB = 50 USD, far lower than the cheapest current-generation Asha which is 499 RMB. It has the same 512 MB RAM, 480x800 screen resolution and 1GHz CPU speed as the Lumina 520, although admittedly a single core instead of dual-core. And that phone was released in February 2012. I didn't spend too long searching, but all the phones in the 500 RMB range I found had similar or even slightly faster hardware than the Lumina 520.

Christian Surlykke

Services and Devices is the name of Microsofts strategy. A good name, I think, as it illuminates the central problem Microsoft and it's new CEO has to deal with: The conflict between the device/OS business and the service/cloud business.
The conflict is:

a) If you want to sell devices, you'd use your services to add value to those. I.e. bring MS Office, Skype, Bing etc. to WP devices only, or at least make the Android/IOS versions inferior.

b) If you want to sell services, you'll want to bring your services to all device platforms with equal quality.

There is a lot of Microsoft bashing on this blog. Nothing wrong with that - I enjoy a good Microsoft bashing as much as anybody else - but sometimes that bashing turns into the assumption that the people working at Microsoft are stupid. *That* I think is gravely mistaken.
There are a *lot* of *very* smart people at MS, and *surely* they are concerned with and analyzing this conflict. Also, *surely*, high ranking staff at Microsoft are considering the possibility that the mobile/table strategy will fail and what to do then. It follows that they must consider the possibility of focusing on the services side of MS and bringing those services to Android.

The rumored Normandy phone could very well be seen as a survey into this. Apparently it's the 'Amazon' model: fork android and put your own services on it - Microsofts in this case. That Nokia is, until april, formally independent of MS, is probably an advantage, as it gives 'plausible deniability' - Microsoft can state that they have nothing to do with it. And when April comes, they can say that it takes some time to integrate Nokia into MS - hand off what they don't want, retool production etc., so production of an Android phone could continue into the fall of 2014, giving MS time enough to asses the experiment.

I don't believe in the wishful thinking given above, that it should be some ploy to undo the Nokia-MS deal. I don't believe either, that Elop has any say in this. He made a bid for the position as CEO and failed, so he is a lame duck in Microsoft and will leave soon.

Janne

@Kobbe60

That would be ironical. First Nokia (by MS-Elop) uses WP as the lifesaver, and then MS uses Android. It would underline the typical MS strategy fiasco in every way. Always two costly mistakes and one mild success (Think about RT/WP/Windows8). They have money to burn, but it's been a lot.

Huber

@Christian Surlykke:>> enjoy a good Microsoft bashing as much as anybody else - but sometimes that bashing turns into the assumption that the people working at Microsoft are stupid.

Just look at W8, Windows RT and WM6/WP7/WP8. All these are failures.

And now please tell me that the Microsoft managers are not stupid.

Flo

I've read Nokia Microsoft deal several times in the past few weeks and i just couldn't find the part in witch Nokia is forbidden to build smartphones after the deal.
If i'm wrong please someone correct me.
I guess things are pretty simple and not that complicated.

m

I agree with Earendil Star's comments.

MS is known for their strategy of "embrace, enhance, extinguish." They're already exploiting Android with their licensing deals with OEMs.

It is better for MS's image if any new foray into exploiting Android is seen to be initiated by Nokia.

R

Well, it's not hard to imagine that Elop is a psychopath. He was already publicly talking about which people he wanted to fire as soon as he was made CEO of Microsoft. Because he wasn't, revenge is not out of the question.

murmur

I believe this is either another EEE or damage control from MS. I will try to explain my point of view.

Elop and the rest of MS management is aware that they don't have any foothold in emerging markets. While Western markets are basically already saturated and there is not much chance for WP to break out, the emerging markets are still a battlefield.

From the leaks by Eldar you can see that NOKIA built an Android UI that looks very similar to WP. I believe the reason for this is two fold:

1) Use both NOKIA and Android brands to get back some mind share in emerging markets. People still sentimentally like NOKIA brand and Android is the cheapest and most widespread OS in these markets. By changing the look of UI to resemble WP, MS can earn some time to get equivalent apps on the WP platform and then try to entice people to switch completely. They can basically control user experience by providing a "WP launcher". People can also cheer for NOKIA as finally opposing Microsoft by not realizing their are being played.

2) MS can start integrating their replacement of GMS, mostly based on HERE technology and Office. After the recent deal with Samsung, Google probably forever closed GMS access to MS. MS can port all their SW like Office, OneDrive, Outlook, remote desktop as well as complete offline maps of the world in HERE Maps and use it to be marketed to masses as a reasonable alternative. Moreover, MS is painfully aware Android won the battle and pragmatical thinking would be it's better for them to have some presence than none, even better in an environment they can control. "Do you like Android? Do you want Office/Outlook/Offline Maps on your Android? Use NOKIA Android!"

Google still has better engineering than MS though cracks are showing lately so there aren't many ways how MS can technologically outsmart Google. Amazon showed MS they can build a viable AOSP environment independent from Google.

Mind you, Microsoft was facing a similar problem with OS/2 when the whole high echelon of MS (including BG & SB) was reconciled with the fact they will stop selling DOS and migrate all development to OS/2, stopping producing Windows. Only a few geniuses they employed at the time figured out how to outsmart IBM by managing to run Windows in 286 protected mode which subsequently gave them a huge advantage over OS/2 and its requirement of a beefy and expensive 386 processor.

Thomas

While a quick sale seems the most likely, I enjoy the idea that, historically, sellers of Msft mobile software eventually exit that market and move to Android. Soon to include Microsoft itself.

eduardom

Android aside, it seems to me that Microsoft would sell off the dumbphone business as soon as possible. It is way outside Microsoft's area of expertise, has no potential for large profits, has no synergies with Microsoft's existing businesses, and it uses a non-winindows os.

But perhaps I am wrong. Can anyone think of why Microsoft would like to hold on to it?

Mao Nixon

I don't think microsoft will sell the Asha/Feature phone line to some other company, that will be a dumb move of the century.
1. It would give some other company some foothold in the industry. Let say, unknown company 'A' buy the asha line up. current Nokia user will know this A brand, and when A brand finally decide to do android, the nokia feature phone user will buy from this A instead of microsoft.
2. Especially if Asha has android, it would be the same as giving nokia user that don't want WP into that 'A' company instead of microsoft WP.

So, microsoft will bury Nokia Asha line up, and will migrate the user to WP.

enerverad

Since Elop did not become the next MS CEO, then his silly mind needs a puny revenge in the form of an "Android Threat"

chithanh

shmed: minimum requirements for Android 4.4 (KitKat) are single core ARM, MIPS or x86, 512 MB RAM and OpenGL ES 2.0 graphics. For 2.3 (Gingerbread) you can even go as low as 256 MB and no 3D acceleration.

WP8 on the other hand requires dual core Snapdragon S4 Pro or dual/quad x00. So you have both higher required specs and a smaller Market to choose the SoC from, which both increase cost. This and the license cost puts WP8 at a severe disadvantage at the low end and in price sensitive markets.

jj

Nokia just started to use some Android robot green in social media (Facebook, twitter) instead of Nokia blue. Android is coming?

Jim

Could it be that Nokia will take an Android foundation and overlay a Windows UI on top. Depending on how virtualized the Windows environment, then you can run some Android apps and some Windows apps.

EmmanuelM

Clearly the sale of the 'dumbphone' part of Nokia phone branch is the most likely explanation for the introduction of this Asha Android phone ...

But what a mess it will create for Windows Phone, developers will just run away, consumers will be confused and sales will collapse ...

LeeBase

If it's a DUMB phone...there will be no developers other than Msft. That's why it wouldn't really matter whether it was Android AOSP or S40. Nobody will be writing apps to support it. Nokia/Msft make the user interface look like Metro/WP on a cheap phone made well. Good customer experience...next step up is a WP.

Earendil Star

In Elop Flop's original plans, phasing out Nokia's Symbian, the next step up was meant to be a WP (P)OS.

It turned out it was Android. Most likely this time as well... :)

Dipankar

Great discussion... wonder how I missed this post!
Most articles on the leaks think that Normandy would be based on Kitkat.
If my previous experience in Nokia SW development is anything to go by, then it's likely they have been working on this since at least a year. Since it is rumored that the device has a 1Ghz processor and only 512 MB RAM, Nokia must have been working hard optimizing the code, replacing many components with their own. So I guess, Normandy must be forked-off an older version like JB. Nokia would probably not mention this, and just have their own version-ing of the fork (Nokia Carla, after Anna and Belle?).

edwin

This is applicable to www.phoneinlookup.com in business transactions since if we would like to find a potential business partner, we can make use of this technology along with whitepages and yellowpages.

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