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Eurobites: HMD Global to make its phones in Europe – using the old Nokia logo

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Tim Höttges experiences buyer's remorse; Breton says he doesn't have it in for Big Tech; Nokia lands RAN deal in South Africa.

Paul Rainford

February 27, 2023

3 Min Read
Eurobites: HMD Global to make its phones in Europe – using the old Nokia logo

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Tim Höttges experiences buyer's remorse; Breton says he doesn't have it in for Big Tech; Nokia lands RAN deal in South Africa.HMD Global, the Finnish company that was set up in 2016 to design and sell Nokia-branded phones, says it intends to start manufacturing the handsets in Europe before the end of the year, a move that it claims will make it the first "major global smartphone provider" to bring manufacturing to the continent. As part of the move, HMD says it will offer customers "a high level of security assurance" through customized software and security features, working with some additional IT security partners. But will these Europe-made handsets feature the new Nokia logo, revealed at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona yesterday, or stick with the iconic, reassuringly retro number that has been wowing design nerds everywhere for the last 60 years or so? Well, in a statement, HMD Global said: "The classic Nokia brand has an incredible history in mobile phones. Our Nokia branded phones such as the three new devices we announced this week, the Nokia G22, Nokia C22 and Nokia C32 continue the great momentum associated with the classic Nokia logo." Which sounds like a win for the design nerds… (See Nokia Makes 'Elegant' Return to Handset Market, Says Device Industry Expert.)Figure 1:Nokia's new logo: It won't be appearing on HMD Global's Nokia-branded phones, for the time being at least.

(Source: Nokia)Ordinary mortals live to regret buying, say, a duff toaster or chafing undergarments, but Deutsche Telekom CEO Tim Höttges is experiencing buyer's remorse on a massive scale: his company's purchase of a £5.6 billion (US$6.7 billion) stake in BT in 2015, a stake that has since lost £4 billion ($4.8 billion) in value. According to a Financial Times report, Höttges described the deal as the "biggest mistake" he ever made, vowing that he will, somehow, "get that money back" in due course. Let's hope he kept the receipt.Despite all appearances to the contrary, EU bigwig Thierry Breton denies he's taking the side of Big Telco versus Big Tech in the long-running dispute over how much more, if any, the latter should contribute to the upkeep of the former's traffic-saturated networks, a dispute that has prompted the launch of a European Commission consultation into the whole issue. As Reuters reports, Breton used a speech at Mobile World Congress to maintain that he does not view the matter as "a binary choice between those who provide networks today and those who feed them with the traffic, " adding that for him the real challenge is to "make sure that by 2030 our fellow citizens and business on our streets across the EU – including here in Barcelona – have access to fast, reliable and data-intense gigabit connectivity." (See Eurobites: EU pokes the Big Tech bear again.)Nokia has landed a RAN deal with South Africa's MTN, under the terms of which the Finnish vendor will modernize the existing 2G/3G/4G radio network and expand MTN's 5G radio network across 2,800 sites in the central and eastern part of the country. Products from its AirScale range of baseband, massive MIMO active antennas and remote radio heads will be deployed. Nokia is also setting up a training program – open to 5,000 applicants – intended to drive digitalization across the African continent.Nordic operator Telia has unveiled a video-recognition system it has created for Transval, a Finnish logistics company. The new system, which uses a virtual private 5G network combined with AWS edge computing, replaces the need for manual physical inventory counts and reconciliations by automatically tracking and reporting on the movement of inventory. The system calculates the number of pallets in a given area, reports how much free space is left in each stack and tracks the movement of pallets from one stack to another, revealing an accurate picture of inventory levels in real time.— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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About the Author(s)

Paul Rainford

Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

Paul is based on the Isle of Wight, a rocky outcrop off the English coast that is home only to a colony of technology journalists and several thousand puffins.

He has worked as a writer and copy editor since the age of William Caxton, covering the design industry, D-list celebs, tourism and much, much more.

During the noughties Paul took time out from his page proofs and marker pens to run a small hotel with his other half in the wilds of Exmoor. There he developed a range of skills including carrying cooked breakfasts, lying to unwanted guests and stopping leaks with old towels.

Now back, slightly befuddled, in the world of online journalism, Paul is thoroughly engaged with the modern world, regularly firing up his VHS video recorder and accidentally sending text messages to strangers using a chipped Nokia feature phone.

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