At Mobile World Congress earlier this year Nokia's keynote was all about farmers and the non-urban segment of developing economies like India, China and Africa. Nokia has a suite of services that would be supported on a subset of their handsets priced according to the market segment. Known as OVI Life Tools, Nokia’s handsets will bring essential information to the user. There are three services available for the user to opt-in, they are:
- Agriculture - information such as the cropping cycles, location specific.
- Education - exam results and tips, improving English and General Knowledge.
- Entertainment - Sports, News and Music
Tata DoCoMo will be bringing Agriculture and Education services as part of their Value Added Services which they feel are life assisting services and powerful enablers helping people earn their living. Nokia had announced commercial availability of Life Tools in India a little more than an year back in Maharashtra. Today, the suite of services has spread across 18 states and is available in 11 regional languages – Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Malayalam, Telugu, Punjabi, Kannada, Tamil, Oriya and English.
The Agriculture service is available under two plans:
- Rs. 30 per month for daily agriculture news, tips and daily weather updates.
- Rs. 60 per month for closest market prices for 3 crops as per subscriber's choice along with daily agriculture news, tips and weather updates.
The Education service is available for Rs. 30/- a month.
Tata DoCoMo will be offering these services along with their SIM cards and should be able to leverage this deal to get a stronger foothold in the rural parts of India. While Nokia might be losing its dominance when it comes to cities, such services should help them maintain their status as the leading handset manufacturer.
Nokia has fairly decent handset options that can be used with OVI Life Tools, a list for India can be found here.