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« Electronic Echoes and the Bizarre War Nokia Communications Director John Pope Now Waging With Me? | Main | Updating Many Mobile Numbers and Milestones »

May 11, 2012



So you got it too...

But to be honest, such a list could be done for any OS... and a list of 101 goodies could be done as well.

it all depends on your feelings towards the OS.

It would be more constructive to make a 101 list of reasons why Nokia shouldn't have taken WP as its ONLY OS.


The list with 101 with things that is wrong with Windows Phone is a great overview. As much as this hostile overtake of Nokia by Microsoft puzzles me, Microsoft puzzles me as well. There is absolutely no doubt that Windows Phone is a technological underachievement and still is despite it is almost 2 years old now. I strongly believe the main reason Windows Phone doesn't sell is because people know that the OS is simply immature and very limited.

I really wonder what is going on at Microsoft management as many of these issues are so fundamental and also trivial to implement. For example, one volume setting of everything or not allowing MP3 ringtones. What are they thinking about?

At Microsoft they allow the department responsible for Zune and other market flops to be in charge of developing their next mobile OS. Microsoft have historically been very harsh at departments that under perform and have closed them down. Now instead, they let their golden egg and cash cow namely Windows to be infested by the Zune UI also known as Metro. Metro has been criticized all over the world but Microsoft seems to be determined to destroy their own products by it. The whole situation resembles how politicians believe in failed ideologies.

Now they believe that Nokia can save them but can Microsoft be saved from itself?

Alex Kerr

I think apart from the obvious huge failure with regard to the Symbian announcement (i.e. Nokia should have got behind it even more strongly on Feb 11th 2011 knowing a competitive Windows Phone would not be available until the end of 2012/early-2013 earliest with WP8, rather than knifing Symbian in the back) was the other major fault that Tomi alludes to here and has in the past:

EXPECTATION. If a person likes WinPho/Lumia, that's great! Wonderful, I'm all for it. But people who defend it, or Nokia's move to it, on that basis (because some people like it, which is inevitable with anything), are totally missing the point.

The point is, as the 101 List shows (regardless of whether it is 100% accurate on every point) that Windows Phone is RADICALLY different to Symbian, and to MeeGo, and to S40, and also hugely lacking compared to Symbian especially, and also MeeGo (and to varying degrees to iOS and Android). THIS is the problem.

Suppose you'd been having porridge for breakfast for many years, you loved your porridge, you had it with different things at different times - honey, fruit, nuts, etc. You wanted to go on having porridge!

Then, someone comes in, says to you "no more porridige". And gives you bread and cheese instead. Very different. They say "hey everyone, forget your porridge, bread and cheese is the way to go!". Of course, some people will like bread and cheese, but most will long for their porridge with all those tasty extras. They don't want bread and cheese for breakfast! The person who serves breakfast is CRAZY to think you will suddenly stop liking your favourite porridge and start liking bread and cheese all of a sudden.

This is Nokia. And the customer response has been brutal. I have seen sales charts that show that in various major markets, there has been a direct and matching growth in Android sales over the last year that matches the drop in Symbian sales. Android is closest to Symbian. The story is totally obvious.

Nokia is trying to force feed bread and cheese to people who really want tasty porridge with lots of extras.


On a separate note - channel stuffing. When I bring up the issue of the Elop Effect causing the sales drop in Symbian after Feb 11th, some people desperately try to claim that this was purely due to channel stuffing - i.e. inventory is put into the sales channel sometime ahead of when it sells, so any sudden drop in sales must have been decided several months previously, long before the memo came out on Feb 11th. Who is right here, what is the definitive answer? Was the sudden drop in Symbian sales after Feb 11th due to decisions taken months before and the channel allowed to sell what it had, and then run out, or was it an immediate response to Elop's memo as seems perhaps more obvious?

Alex Kerr

@ AtTheBottomOfTheHilton:

> I really wonder what is going on at Microsoft management as many of these issues are so fundamental and also trivial to implement

Don't underestimate the power of corporate arrogance and bloat. What we may very well be seeing here is Microsoft in the same position as Nokia was prior to Nokia's fall from grace over the last couple of years. Microsoft is huge, bloated, successful and still puffed up from it's years of success in the PC market. Look at almost all previous Microsoft products - they took several iterations at least to get to a decent level of usability and quality etc.

This pattern is probably what they are conforming to with Windows Phone. Maybe by Windows Phone 10 it might be competitive in the marketplace but by that time the world will be mostly Android, and Nokia will be dead and gone unless it has unhitched it's cart from the Windows Phone horse and run with Meltemi instead.


@Alex Kerr

Meltimi is not coming. Elop did kill Meego and started Meltimi from scratch with minimal resources knowing that it will take long to be where Meego was. He was mahbe not able to kill it off but he did push the reset button.
Its all about timing. In a situation like now you do not reset and restart a product at zero if you need to come out with products. Not if you have a product that just needs to be optimized to march the new low hardware rrequirements.

As much as I wish Meltimi would be ready, succeed in the market and Nokia regenerate it will never happen. Not with Elop. Before he gives up his Windows Phone 7 only strategy and admit that it was a failurr he would rather let Nokia die.

Sander van der Wal

Ollila himself has said that Nokia was secretly working on Windows Phone, and that the board did not believe they could have kept this secret until Windows Phone was ready. So, an analysis of Nokia for the last year and a half should take into account what would have happened if Nokia would not tell the world about its plans to abandon Symbian and MeeGo until it would be ready to release a windows phone.


A personal note: I really like what Tomi writes. His analysis are briliant and so are his forecasts. But one thing I do no agree with. That Nokia can still be rescued. Its to deep into trouble. Only changing the CEO would not solve all the issues Elop and the board produced. Undoing dones takes time and Nokia has not much time left.

We need to accept that Nokia will vanish like Symbian. As long time happy Nokia customer thats not easy but there is no alternatr then switching to Android, iPhone, Blackberry, Bada or Tizen. There is no plan B.


two life and death issues not being listed in the 101 list:

0.1 worst camera experience on Lumia 900

0.2 wifi cannot coexist with 4G LTE/3G data

These two issues are killing lumia 900 cause users are return their lumia 900 phones within first week of try to AT&T store.

warranty cost in Q2 will shoot up to the moon.

the more lumia 900 nokia sells, the more loss nokia will take in Q2.


@Sander van der Wal
Admitting that there is also work going on on Windows Phone and killing of your cash-cow Symbian and all other alternates to that work on Windows Phone are not the same things.
There is a huge difference and that difference is killing Nokia now. That is the point.


I completely agree with what you said about porridge and bread+cheese.

I also agree with comparison between MS now and Nokia then:

Microsoft used to be colossal, really huge! But because of mismanagement (Vista, Flight Simulator, Windows Mobile/Windows Phone, EPM...) now it's just very big.

Just one example: try to investigate at firms you know. I made it with firms I really know well in two countries, and of 7 (2 defence, 2 banks, 3 ministries), all the 7 are still using Windows XP and will switch to Windows Seven (not 8!) only when Microsoft will force them to do so. Same with Office versions that companies are reluctant to upgrade.

Many companies are just fed up with troubles they face with Microsoft (unreliable, expensive, bad after-sale service...).

They usually keep Windows because they're to afraid of having to develop again all their existing apps for a new OS, but some will certainly change as many specialized applications for XP doesn't work on 7.

So Microsoft has quite a bad reputation, and as average mobile phone user has choice, (s)he buys the one they trust more:

it can be Apple thanks to their excellent after-sale service, or Samsung because one owns already a Samsung TV, a Samsung washing machine or a Samsung super-tanker and are pleased with it.

Everything that the Nokia-Microsoft joint venture doesn't have.



Plan B to save nokia
1. Remove Elop from BOD.
Let COO take Elop's day to day duty.
Let no body come to nokia CEO's office to take command.
No need to fire Elop, not let him take his dreaming gold parachute. let him take all his duty to handle lawsuit in USA court

2. Remove the deadline on Symbian platform
Remove the no more MeeGo device stick

3. Ramp up the building, marketing and selling N9/n950/808 across the world

4. keep Windows Phone line

5. Restore MeeGo team and Symbian team to improve them
a. Enhance Symbian smartphone by adding support both resolution (360x640 for low sector, 480x858 for medium sector), Port MeeGo browser to Symbian
b. Enhance MeeGo by adding support both resolution (480x858 for medium sector, 720x1280 for high sector)

6. Improve Lumia series and continue working on WP8 (1280x720 dual core high end)

7. Build nokia platform via nokia store and nokia cloud service
Add Qt path to Windows Phone to make OS less matter, Apps/service rule.

8. Start Android phone possibility research

9. make nokia maps/music mix apps available on all platforms for a small price tag US $49.99


Alex Kerr

> Meltimi is not coming.

What evidence do you have for that exactly?

There is plenty of evidence that Meltemi is coming, and coming soon, indeed later this year. There have been multiple leaks and rumours, including Elop mentioning it himself. There is also rumour that MeeGo fed into Meltemi, as did Smarterphone in some way (perhaps just staff if not tech too). Furthermore, Meltemi is not technically limited to the low end either. Also, references to it were spotted in Qt bug reports before they were removed.

Current expectation based on rumours is the low end S40 based 306 with full screen capacitive multi touch will be announced this month, and then Meltemi low end devices with Qt (and I strongly presume Java too) will be announced later in the year, probably Nokia World in the autumn.


mmm... can anyone tell me what was the point for Nokia in acquiring Smarterphone at the beginning of the year ?

Sander van der Wal


Nokia has said in public and multiple times that Qt would be their way forward, on top of Symbian an MeeGo. So, as soon as they would announce Windws Phone devices, they would have to explain why suddenly Windows Phone, and why Qt would not be on it. That is not explainable. Microsoft will not allow Qt on Windows Phone. Three OS'es means fragmenting their ecosystem, making them all weaker against Android and iOS.

Dumping Symbian and MeeGo when Windows Phone was ready would mean massively screwing their third party developer system, at the time when third party support would have been essential. Nobody in their right mind would want to work with a partner which was lying through their teeth at you.

So, without analysing the alternatives there isn't much one can learn from this.

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi Vladkr, At, Alex, Spawn, Sander and Tomifan

Vladkr - haha, thanks yeah. But as I do not own a smartphone using Windows Phone and am not planning to (my current smartphones run Android and Symbian), I think this kind of listing is useful to examine the issues. Some on that list are potentially deal-breakers and I think that list illustrates just how incompetent about mobile, the Microsoft Windows Phone team has been. And it helps explain the enormous return rates, and the carrier rejection of Windows Phone. This is an OS that is designed to disappoint. And when you are disappointed, you go back to the carrier store to return, which then often is after the official return deadlines, and you have an argument with the sales staff (who don't want to lose commissions) and the end-customer becomes upset. This means they project that anger also at the carrier store and thus the operator brand.

At - haha, technological underachievement indeed. And very good observations about how this reflects to the development priorities inside Microsoft (bad omens there obviously)

Alex (welcome back, where have you been my friend!) - excellent analogy porridge vs cheese bread. Excellent, I'll use that when I talk to the media.

About the Windows 10 haha iteration, yes it might take that long to get Microsoft basics right (it took as long to get original Windows right, I remember Windows 1.0 and 2.0 and 3.0, and the first one that was reasonably usable, was Windows 3.1). But Windows Mobile went from 12% to 3% market share by the time Windows Phone launched. Windows Phone has gone from 2% to 1% under Windows Phone 7.x. how microscopic will the Microsoft mobile market share be by the time they get it right, haha. I mean, Moto left after WM, Sony and LG bolted now under Windows Phone, Samsung is shifting to Tizen soon so whose left to carry the load. Nokia's own market share will be down to 3% by year-end and 1% by next year this time...

Spawn - I am afraid you are right, at least all of Elop's actions so far suggest that is his pattern and modus operandi

Sander - yes, I agree. And I attempted that analysis last year if you remember in the summer when I had good time to crunch some numbers. I took the most pessimistic assumptions under the Symbian/MeeGo strategy without the Elop Effect, and compared it to I think it was Q2 or perhaps Q3 numbers and calculated the delta between those. Its on the blog if you want to go see. It was not pretty, Nokia would be a highly profitable company now even without counting how much a fully-supported MeeGo global launch would have added by Christmas haha

Tomifan - cheers! And onbviously, if you are a business, you don't make that choice ever. You offer all of the above, but if you prefer one over the other, you tilt the business so, that you raise the prices of the 'undesirable' part so as it gradually ramps down, it is always profitable for you. That is - ahem - what Nokia should have done with Symbian... (don't want to dwell on it now, on a nice Friday night)

Cheers all, keep the comments coming, will return soon with more

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Earendil Star


Why on Earth should Nokia have abandoned Symbian and Meego?

A normal CEO would have strenghtened the Symbian / Meego line, and gone *also* WP.

In which case, no harm would have ensued, for the first ecosystem Nokia controlled, by a WP adoption announcement.

Actually, why should have Nokia chosen WP in the first place? Android should have been the choice for a backup strategy. The Samsung way.
Alternatively, Nokia could have chosen WP, but *only* if REAL concessions were made by MS. Not the fake ones publicised by MS propaganda.
Remember, WP was (and remains) the burning platform, not Symbian or Meego.

WP should have been a very low priority choice, and only with many strings attached to it.
Again, why on Earth should have Nokia chosen the last and worst OS out there (with 101 shortcomings and counting... in 2012!!!!) as its ONLY strategy?
It was a totally insane idea, as is now fully evident. Only MS could benefit from such an idiotic move, and probably overdid it anyway.

So, this is why your point is baseless.

David Niven

I LOVE my N8



The core issue is that Nokia already destroyed its previous ecosystems successfully.

Lot of those who wrote Symbian applications, learned Qt to bridge to Meego left already. They moved.on to iphone, Android. Nokia can do nothing to bring them back
Lots of the ex-partners invested significant in the Qt Symbian/Meego strategy. They left the moment Elop made clear both platforms are dead, all the investment is lost. The Symbian/Meego/Qt is not more.
Symbian was huge. Lots of users and money. WP7 is nothing. Companies, developers and supporters moved on. Nokia has nothing to offer to bring them back. Only 8% marketshare, no security of investment, no trust.


@Alex Kerr

Evidence? None I could bring to a curt and risc my financial health with when Micronokia sues me.

There are certain hints and I count 1+1 together. Contacts, knowledge, experience.


@Sander van der Wal

> So, as soon as they would announce Windws Phone devices, they would have to explain why suddenly Windows Phone, and why Qt would not be on it.

And where is the problem?

Or asked different: Do you really think killing Symbian/Meego/Qt was the better, easier, saver of those both alternatives?

> That is not explainable

It is. Even very easy. Just tell the truth: We try a theird strategy in parallel to our two strategies we already have (Symbian and Meego).
Remember that just some posts above yours Meltimi was named. Nokia HAS those 3 strategies. They still do Symbian and Meego (maemo->meego->meltimi).
They do that but declared everything non-Windows dead. See how stupid that is? More so when you think that from those 3 platforms only WP7 is burning. But I am surr Elop gets Symbian to burn too soon. And Meltimi is already deadborn under Elop.

> Three OS'es means fragmenting their ecosystem, making them all weaker against Android and iOS.

Focus and choice are not mutable exclusive.

You think that cause I offer A and B I have 5 customers per option whereas if I would only offer B that option would have 10 customers. The market works different. If you xo not offer A a competitor does and you have half your customers lost.
That is exactly the problem Nokia has now. Customers by non-Nokia cause Nomia offers only B-level mobiles.

> Nobody in their right mind would want to work with a partner which was lying through their teeth at you.

Yeah. Also there is the factor that even if Nokia, well Elop, believes in his WP7 strategy partners may not.
As Tomi wrote that strategy is riscy and some of the partners choosed not to take thd risc and moved to saver terain like Android or iPhone.

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