Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

Summary: The Nokia World rumors are flying fast and furious as to which new Windows Phones the company will unveil this week, and when carriers around the world will begin offering them.


The London-based Nokia World conference kicks off on October 26 (Wednesday) and rumors have been flying fast and furious as to what to expect.

The agenda of the two-day conference -- even the invitation-only components -- is all public. There will be tracks on winning the next billion smartphone users; developing for the Windows Phone platform; and building out entertainment offerings on the coming Nokia Windows Phones. (I'm thinking we're going to hear more about Microsoft Office on Nokia's phones, as well, given William Kennedy, Corporate Vice President of Office Communications & Mobile Experiences Team, is on the docket, as well.)

The speaker line-up includes a number of Microsoft Windows Phone big-wigs besides Kennedy-- everyone from Windows Phone Corporate Vice President Joe Belfiore and Senior Director of Windows Phone Development Brandon Watson, to Windows Phone Engineering Chief Terry Myerson and Windows Phone Corporate Vice President of Marketing Achim Berg.

Microsoft Steve Ballmer said during an interview last week that Nokia would be showing "a bunch" of Windows Phones at the show. The most common guestimate I've seen is "a bunch" means either two or three: The Nokia 800 (codenamed "SeaRay"); the slightly smaller "Sabre" and possibly a business-user-focused "Ace." Given that there are a number of invitation-only carrier and retail sessions at Nokia World, Microsoft's Windows Phone BFF also may show off privately other phones coming later next year, too.

As to which countries and carriers will be getting Nokia's first Windows Phones, there's no official word (or dates) yet. But according to a new Ad Age article, it sounds like there's a possibility that Nokia's Windows Phones may not be available in the U.S. in 2011l, but will be launching in Europe some time in November first.  Nokia is said to be seeking an ad agency in the States to launch its phones here next year. Given Microsoft launched its Windows Phones a year ago in Europe first, I guess this kind of delay shouldn't be surprising. But still a downer for Windows Phone fans who've been waiting to see what Nokia might have here in time for this year's holiday shopping season....

Nokia is just one of Microsoft's Windows Phone OEMs, but one with special privileges. Nokia is building Windows Phone components that may be unique to its platform and/or which it may offer back to Microsoft for inclusion in other Windows Phones. Nokia is known for its expertise (and patents) in phone cameras, maps, and unusual industrial-design details, among other areas.

Nokia's relationship with multiple suppliers could enable the company to make Windows Phones more cheaply and introduce new models at lower price points -- something Microsoft officials are promising for next year, especially as the "Tango" Windows Phone operating system enables the Softies and partners to enter new markets.

I'll be at the Nokia World show this week with my ZDNet colleagues Matthew Miller and Zack Whittaker, as well as our compatriots Maggie Reardon and Stephen Shankland. We're planning to group live-blog the first day keynote at 9 am BST (4 am ET; 1 am PT). Come back to "All About Microsoft" then if you'd like to chime in along with us.

Update: The keynote (Day 1 only, I believe) will be webcast here:

Topics: Telcos, Microsoft, Mobility, Nokia, Operating Systems, Software, Windows


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Any news of live video feeds?

    Cant find any info on Nokias sites as to if there will be video broadcasting or not. You guys got any news?
    • webcast

      The webcast of the Day 1 keynote will be broadcast here: starting at 9 am BST.
      Mary Jo Foley
    • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front


      Dual Core and LTE 4G? IOS has so much games and apps i think wp7 will lose as KIN
      • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

        @Sultansulan You don't seem to be very well informed about the mobile market. A dual core phone has two processing cores, with each running at half of the overall clock speed. A 1 GHZ dual core or single core CPU do the same amount of math, the dual core just does two sets of math simultaneously, but each set is at half the speed. A dual core will only give a performance boost if the application and operating system is designed and optimized for a multi-core device. AMD recently released an 8 core desktop processor, but many of Intel's 4 core processors outperform it in everyday use, because very few applications can actually use all 8 cores.

        KIN was a huge failure from the start. WP7 didn't boom, but it didn't fail, and it has been out for about a year now.

        LTE 4g is nice, but it's useless when service providers are getting rid of unlimited plans. You'll reach the data cap even faster with 4G.

        iOS is an excellent operating system, with many apps, but the iPhone isn't for everyone. My hands are 10.5" across, and I struggle to type on the iPhone, and I find the screen to be too small.

        Android has almost if not as many apps as iOS, but it's not optimized for any particular kind of device, and the lack of GPU acceleration is disappointing. Android is great, but it doesn't run as well as it should on powerful hardware.

        Windows Phone is an excellent OS in itself, but there aren't many apps, and Microsoft is slow when it comes to adding updates (they do come, they are great, but it could be done more promptly).

        I have an iPhone 3GS, a Motorla Atrix 4G (with a dual core CPU), and the Dell Venue Pro (A WP7.5 device), and I must say, overall, I think Windows Phone 7.5 is the best cellphone OS.
  • 4 am!

    that's tough...
  • 3 phones huh.

    I just looked at motorola's web site. They list 15 different android phones. 15! After 8 months nokia only has 3. Well that's just great. I bet they are all GSM phones too.
    • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front


      Apple only has a few phones and their doing OK.
    • And all 15 of them are garbage

      @pmcgrath@... Sorry, but not a single MotoDroid are worth the free (subsidize) price tag (subsidize) they have.
    • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

      @pmcgrath@... Apple released 1 phone a year! and this year they released last years phone. ;-)
    • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

      This is true. However, Motorola have 15 Motorola phones. Nokia will have 3 Nokia phones. In my book Nokia wins. Big time.
      Major Plonquer
      • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

        @Major Plonquer
        Sorry, but Nokia has only 1 phone, the N9 Linux based phone. The other "3" are wannabee MS .... yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwnnnnnnn gzzzzz
        Johan Safari
    • Allow me to reiterate my disappointment here...

      Apple will have no problem selling their phone. They probably sold 4 times as many 4s??? (4 mil) in the first week as all the Windows Phones combined to date.

      Apple has no problem getting their phones in front of their customers. Heck, even Droidizon gives the iPhone a half of a wall.

      Windows phone has an image problem. To the average consumer it is invisible. Microsoft???s soft launch has been a failure. It???s like they a joined a Call of Duty death match armed with a Nerf gun. Unless something changes soon, Windows phone will end up like the Zune HD, a great device that no one has ever heard of.

      I am absolutely frustrated at Microsoft???s total and complete failure in marketing and advertising. Every Sunday I open the Best Buy add and count the number of Android phones vs Windows phones. Most weeks there aren???t any Windows Phones. One week there was 15 to 1 ratio, with the single Windows phone sandwiched between the free droid and the feature phones.

      This deal with Nokia was supposed to be the saving grace for this platform. With only 3 phone ready before the holiday season, it is not looking too good.

      And if none of these phones are on Verizon, they might as well not exist to me. I still be rocken my HTC Trophy. A fine Windows phone, but still my ONLY option.

      I know the 3 phones is just an estimate at this point, so I???ll have to wait and see, but I???m losing faith.
      • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front


        MSFT is missing hundreds of billions of dollars with foot dragging and navel gazing.

        Steve B and his stubborn refusal to look facts in the face is simply distroying the Microsoft brand.

        and btw , half a billion dollars in android patent fees is not even going to cover the monies lost on search in the last 6 weeks. And I am not making that up.
      • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

        @pmcgrath@... I agree with you. I was a happy Windows Mobile user through 6.5. I finally got tired of waiting and got a Droid 2 Global which I liked and figured I was out of the market for 2 years. Through no fault of the phone, the poor thing drowned, so I went back to Verizon for a phone. They had no one prepared to show me a WP7 phone and I walked in asking to see one! Ended up with Droid Bionic to get LTE.
      • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

        @pmcgrath@... I share the same sentiment. I love my Trophy, but the lack of options for a M$ product just escalates the perception of bad quality compared to Android. Apple can get away with only one model because they are Apple. I hope Nokia surprises us beyond the rumors. I walked into an AT&T store, and it was very difficult to tell that WP7 had any presence in there. That's a bad sign especially when I was actively seeking for the WP7 models on my own. I hope Nokia will change that experience in the very near future.
    • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front


      And that is a good thing too. Microsoft makes a nice royalty from every droid phone sold. (Almost a half billion dollars in the last year.) You gotta love it...
      • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front


        Not from moto, yet.
  • Rumor has it

    There will be at least one CDMA flip phone....

  • RE: Nokia World: Here's what to expect on the Windows Phone front

    Can't wait to see what they announce. This will be one event worth watching. I'm going to say you are right and they won't launch any U.S. phones for a while, then about 9 months after they do Verizon will finally get them.
  • 3 Phones

    Man it's a real shame for you guys in the US to have to wait, I know a lot of you aren't massively familiar with Nokia, but I remember seeing their handsets in loads of US music videos and whatnot about 5 years back... here in the UK they pretty much swamped the market up until the iPhone's release.

    I love my Omnia 7, although it seems to have gone haywire over the past few weeks (wi-fi randomly switching off, apps hanging/closing, refusing to switch back on from lock) and there's absolutely no clue as to when the Mango update might finally be released for my handset, so I might just be tempted to buy one of these Nokias outright if the price is right.

    The N8/SeaRay might just be the best looking phone I've ever seen. I'm seriously excited about this event, my personal expectation is that the Ace will be their flagship, top of the line handset, with the SeaRay catering for the midrange and Sabre handling the low-end of the market. I guess we'll see... this is the first time I've heard the 'Ace' being mentioned as their 'business' handset though.