Light Reading
Shareholders are asking the Windows Phone maker to choose a different road, but none are paved with gold

Nokia on the Road to Hell?

Sarah Reedy
5/7/2013
50%
50%

Nokia shareholders are politely asking the Windows Phone maker to pick a new path, not the road to hell it's currently on.

On Tuesday, shareholder Hannu Virtanen told the hell-bound company's CEO Stephen Elop, "You're a nice guy ... and the leadership team is doing its best, but clearly, it's not enough," according to Reuters. He then asked, "Are you aware that results are what matter? The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Please switch to another road."

I think Elop is well aware of the importance of results, but I have to admit that it's easy to wonder if he's lost his way. I was thinking the other day that I hadn't heard a peep from Nokia in quite some time when I saw Microsoft's latest Lumia 920 commercial making fun of the fanboy war between Apple and Samsung. The problem was that I didn't realize it was a Lumia commercial until the very end. All the attention was on Apple and Android.

That's how the market is, too. It seems that Nokia's big Windows Phone push hasn't really been that big at all. The Finnish company sold 5.6 million Lumia handsets in its first quarter, up from 4.4 million in the previous quarter, but only giving it 5 percent market share. (See Euronews: Nokia Devices Still on the Slide.)

The problem is, it's going to be quite hard to "switch to another road" at this point. I do think Nokia is smart to stay on the sidelines of the Apple and Android fight, but it has to find its niche elsewhere. Crawling back to Android is a lost cause -- it's too little, too late. At this point, its options may be to either focus on taking down BlackBerry, a tricky proposition given their relative enterprise offerings, or to become the champion of the cheap phone.

If it can capture the first-time buyers and emerging markets, where it already has inroads, Nokia may have a chance of escaping purgatory. It seems to realize this, as it's holding an event in India on Thursday where it will unveil a low-cost smartphone targeted at emerging markets. It also just appointed a new general manager for China, Erik Bertman, who takes over June 1.

At the same time, Nokia is not giving up on the high end. Its oft-rumored Lumia 928 is expected to come soon to Verizon. (See Nokia Flagship to Sail Onto Verizon in May?)

I don't know if the emerging markets will be enough to save Nokia, but just staying the course doesn't seem like the best move. I wouldn't be as dramatic as Virtanen to say Nokia is headed to hell, but things will certainly get heated where it's going.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(15)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
lanbrown
50%
50%
lanbrown,
User Rank: Moderator
5/14/2013 | 6:07:24 PM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
WP was a sinking ship long before Nokia boarded. Nokia was seeing double digit growth with Symbian. 2010 showed a 34% increase over 2009; 134 million units compared to 100 million, so an increase of 34 million units. Nokia is not even selling 34 million Lumia handsets a year. WP has been a failure and Nokia needs to move on before it is too late. If a 34% increase in sales is a burning platform; then what is WP? There is no hope for WP; there never was.
f133972
50%
50%
f133972,
User Rank: Light Beer
5/9/2013 | 6:57:21 PM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
Enough to save Nokia??? What??? That's a bit bold to say. Maybe you didn't realize it was a Lumia commercial until the end because that was the intent of the commercial...? You talk about market share, isn't that what the commercial is eluding to?
Are we going to make more speculations on the direction of Nokia with little injections here and there -- or can we at least give more "light" perhaps unbiased depth to the article? KK THX
lanbrown
50%
50%
lanbrown,
User Rank: Moderator
5/9/2013 | 2:01:54 AM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
Nokia wants to use some of its own products like their Map software, which is something Google doesn't like. Google doesn't need Nokia, Nokia needs Google though.

The strategy for Nokia is simple. They supposedly already convinced Microsoft to also support more than just Qualcomm chips. Of course, the company they picked is in the process of a de-merger. Microsoft does need to support more than just Qualcomm chips. Once that is done, then Nokia can start to compete with the likes of Samsung and HTC. Nokia can continue to sell WP but that also means they can easily support others. Sailfish will finally be available soon. Firefox will have an OS as will Ubuntu. If people buy the FaceBook phone, maybe Nokia could produce the next model. Nokia can succeed, they just canGÇÖt rely (trust) Microsoft to be the one to do it.
lanbrown
50%
50%
lanbrown,
User Rank: Moderator
5/9/2013 | 2:01:30 AM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
They did but the phones just do not sell. AT&T spent more on advertising on the Lumia 900 than they did the iPhone. Essentially they spent around $400 or so per phone to sell a $99 phone. AT&T didn't see an increase in customers, just a lot of money spent for nothing. For the $150 to $200 million they spent, they could have had a great promotion. Renew or sign-up for a new contract and you are entered in to win $1 million. Each day there would be a new winner and they could do that for six months. Guess what, they would have been farther ahead than jumping on-board the WP train wreck.

Look at WM, where did that end up? Microsoft abandoned it but that was long before the milked it. How about the Kin. That was followed by WP. Microsoft abandoned every WP customer out there with WP8. Up until WP8 handsets that couldn't run the next OS were still being sold. Great way to alienate your small customer base and inform potentials to stay away.
dineshk913
50%
50%
dineshk913,
User Rank: Light Beer
5/8/2013 | 5:33:00 AM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
Or they can virtualize the phone and allow either of OS work ! ...
vinod nanapan
50%
50%
vinod nanapan,
User Rank: Light Beer
5/8/2013 | 12:47:22 AM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
Android is Junk. iPhone is costly. Windows phone is moderately costly and better than iPhone. So choice is clear !!!!
Jeff Anttila
50%
50%
Jeff Anttila,
User Rank: Light Beer
5/7/2013 | 11:54:26 PM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
I'm Finn, and really want to see Nokia succeed, but Apple should be a use-case in "First Mover" or "First to market" advantage.

Even though Nokia had smartphones years before Apple did, Apple localized the software so developers could write the software once.

I remember on Nokia/Ericsson and their first Smartphone platform.
MordyK
50%
50%
MordyK,
User Rank: Light Sabre
5/7/2013 | 10:51:07 PM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
I don't see why they can't go the Android route at any time. AT the end of the day the only major difference between Android and Windows Phone are the apps and the interface, but Nokia can create a signature interface layer on top of Android (inspired by Symbian?) which is an area where they have a ton of experience and add some of their unique stuff such as Pureview. IMHO Its really just a question of marketing and dealing with an overlap of OS's which will also need an good migration app/tool to make it seamless for transitioning customers.
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
5/7/2013 | 10:17:47 PM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
Do you think they could really adopt Android at this point and stand a chance against others like Samsung and HTC? It has stiff competition no matter what it does, but it seems like a tough road with Android too.
rgrutza600
50%
50%
rgrutza600,
User Rank: Lightning
5/7/2013 | 9:03:21 PM
re: Nokia on the Road to Hell?
I forgot to add that Windows Phone 8 is the best smartphone OS on the market. I own two iphones, two androids and two windows phones...
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
More Blogs from Light Reedy
After years of sitting on the sidelines, Microsoft has pledged to support WebRTC -- formerly thought of as a Skype competitor -- in Internet Explorer.
Despite the launch of its new Passport smartphone, BlackBerry needs to embrace a future that's in M2M, messaging and enterprise services.
Vodafone's Dr. Alan Law talks to Light Reading about virtualization, backhaul, SON and more after being appointed chairman of the Small Cell Forum.
Wireless operators are jumping on the mobile music bandwagon, a move that sounds good for many reasons.
The worlds of tennis, fashion and wearables collide as Ralph Lauren and OMsignal turn a polo into a sensor to track your every movement.
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With Rick Talbot, Principal Analyst, Current Analysis

10|31|14   |   2:12   |   (0) comments


At the NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014, Rick Talbot shared his positive feedback about the holistic and open approach that Huawei adopts for SDN and NFV. He also found the open sharing at the event valuable as it features different perspectives from Huawei experts, telecom operators, industry analysts as well as security experts.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With David Snow, Principal Analyst, Current Analysis

10|31|14   |   2:24   |   (0) comments


David Snow talked about his understanding of Huawei and its SoftCOM strategy at the NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014, saying that Huawei's wide approach combining IT and CT expertise, introducing big data and analytics into solutions and contributing to the OpenStack community particularly resonate with him and make the company stand out in the industry.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With Roz Roseboro, Senior Analyst, Heavy Reading

10|31|14   |   3:13   |   (0) comments


Roz Roseboro commented on Huawei's data center capabilities and NFV solutions at the NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014, saying that in addition to covering all three key domains of compute, storage and networking, the company also emphasizes the importance of management capabilities and professional services, which are essential in making NFV a reality.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With Michael Howard, Co-founder & Principal Analyst, Infonetics Research

10|31|14   |   5:25   |   (0) comments


Michael Howard talked about SDN, NFV, and OpenStack adoption at Huawei's NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014. Particularly, he pointed out that Virtual Enterprise CPE is the top NFV use case that operators plan to invest in over 2014 and 2015 to deliver new enterprise services through virtualized functions.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With Jerry Caron, Senior Vice President, Current Analysis

10|31|14   |   3:11   |   (0) comments


At Huawei's NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014, Jerry Caron from Current Analysis said that orchestration and management are key to realizing SDN and NFV for global carriers, and the approach that Huawei is taking, with its FusionSphere Cloud OS at the core, is in the right direction to address the challenges.
LRTV Documentaries
Broadband Battles

10|31|14   |   01:39   |   (0) comments


This year's Broadband World Forum featured a number of show floor battles focused on access gear, components and coffee.
Jonestown
Mobile Backhaul: Going to the Dark Side?

10|30|14   |   2:26   |   (1) comment


Heavy Reading's Patrick Donegan shares his view on a dark trend that bubbled up at Light Reading's annual backhaul conference in NYC.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
2014 Huawei Electric Power Industry Summit: Interview With CEO of SwitchCom

10|30|14   |   4:13   |   (0) comments


SwitchCom, an IT company based in Angola, recommends a variety of Huawei solutions and hardware to their customers in the energy industry.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
2014 Huawei Electric Power Industry Summit: Interview With Ethiopia's Ministry of Water Irrigation & Energy

10|30|14   |   4:08   |   (0) comments


Gosaye Mengistie of Ethiopia's Ministry of Water Irrigation & Energy discusses the collaboration with Huawei in that country.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
2014 Huawei Electric Power Industry Summit: Interview with Dongfang Electronics Corporation

10|30|14   |   5:46   |   (0) comments


Dongfang Electronics Corporation, headquartered in Chengdu, China, is one of China's largest manufacturers of power generators and contractors of power station projects.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
2014 Huawei Electric Power Industry Summit: Interview with Zimbabwe's Customers

10|30|14   |   3:31   |   (0) comments


Representatives of Zimbabwe's Ministry of Power and Development discuss the energy needs of their country as well as new areas of improvement due to enhanced ICT capabilities.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
2014 Huawei Electric Power Industry Summit: Interview With Colbún Chile

10|30|14   |   4:29   |   (0) comments


In Chile, an aging energy infrastructure was in dire need of a modern update. Claudio Valenzuela of Colbún discusses how Huawei's ICT solutions continue to provide crucial information to improve the grid and how an in-country engineer is a cricial asset.
Upcoming Live Events
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
February 10, 2015, Atlanta, GA
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 30, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
WhoIsHostingThis.com presents six of the world's most extreme WiFi hotspots, enabling the most epic selfies you can imagine.
Hot Topics
Microsoft's Skype Embraces WebRTC on IE
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 10/27/2014
FTC Slaps AT&T With Throttling Lawsuit
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 10/28/2014
Wheeler Gets Down With OTT
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 10/29/2014
China's MVNOs Hit the Wall
Robert Clark, 10/27/2014
Let's Not Kill SDN & NFV With Silos
Francois Locoh-Donou, Senior VP, Global Products Group, Ciena, 10/28/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed