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Nokia Claims 5800's 3G Problems Are Fixed

Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) said it has fixed the 3G connection problem for the U.S. version of the 5800 XpressMusic, and the smartphone will be back in retail outlets soon.

The touch-screen smartphone is a music-centric phone that's seen as a rival to Apple's iPhone 3G. The 5800 has sold more than 1 million units around the world since it was released in August, and Nokia expected it to sell well in the United States.

But when it was released in the U.S. market last week, some users reported multiple problems. Nokia said a "limited number" of smartphones had earpiece speakers that were not properly protected from moisture. This was a bit of a setback for the 5800 because it was being positioned as a strong multimedia player.

Additionally, users reported problems connecting the 5800 to AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)'s 3G network in certain markets. The issue was especially noticeable in Chicago and New York, where Nokia has its flagship stores.

"We have concluded this was an isolated situation related to a configuration change in the North American variant," a Nokia spokesman said by e-mail. "We have now adjusted the configuration and will resume sales shortly. Those few customers of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic who experience a 3G signal issue are advised to contact Nokia customer care."

Nokia is the world's market leader for mobile phones and smartphones, but it has not been able to surpass the likes of Apple, Research In Motion, and Motorola in the U.S. market. Nokia has renewed its efforts to gain a larger audience in the U.S. market and placed hope in handsets like the 5800 to spur adoption. It's unclear if the launch bugs will impact sales figures of the 5800.

Smartphones are low-cost and low-risk ways to increase the productivity of your mobile workers. InformationWeek looked at some other ways to arm your road warriors without breaking the bank, and the report can be downloaded here (registration required).

— Marin Perez, InformationWeek

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