Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

Summary: When Microsoft and Nokia announced their major alliance behind Windows Phone, it brought the promise of special products to kick-start the platform. So far, all it's brought are a couple of phones like the rest.

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TOPICS: Microsoft, Banking, CXO, Nokia
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Early this year Microsoft and Nokia were beaming as they announced the strategic alliance that would see the latter's smartphones switching to the Windows Phone platform. Talk was rampant about the possibilities working closely together would create for new competitive products. Rumors have been tossed freely describing that Microsoft paid over a billion dollars to Nokia to form the alliance. With all of the posturing by both companies, it is not unreasonable to think Nokia would produce a Windows Phone product with features to set it apart from the competition. Strangely, that hasn't happened.

I have been following the happenings at Nokia World this week, hoping to see something unique coming that the strategic alliance has spawned. We've seen the first two Windows Phone products from Nokia, but neither one has that special something to set them apart from the competition. They are nice devices, but there is no special something that screams "look at me". There's not even a front-facing camera among them, to better take advantage of Skype video calling that is now under the Microsoft umbrella.

With all of the money and resources Microsoft and Nokia are pouring into this Windows Phone alliance, to see nothing that sets it apart from the crowd is puzzling. It leads to the conjecture that Microsoft can't help Nokia produce a special feature in its Windows Phone line due to concerns about upsetting its other platform partners. Maybe Microsoft realizes its partner's commitment to the Windows Phone platform is fragile, and can't risk upsetting the Mango cart.

With an alliance that reportedly has cost over a billion dollars, it's not unreasonable to expect something new and improved, or even something radically unique. Instead all we've seen are some decent handsets with more of the same, only bearing the Nokia branding. That's not likely enough to make this huge effort worthwhile.

It bears closely watching Nokia in the near term to see if something, anything specific to this strategic alliance comes along to set the resulting products apart from the crowd. It's not a huge crowd to be sure, but just another handset or two like the others is not worth all of the effort expended.

Topics: Microsoft, Banking, CXO, Nokia

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44 comments
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  • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

    Pessimism + here...

    The partnership is in its infancy - let it mature.
    sheesh
    tropolite
    • How long should be expected?

      @tropolite Or is it an indefinite call? We are talking about a phone from a major phone manufacturer for an existing OS right?

      "With all of the money and resources Microsoft and Nokia are pouring into this Windows Phone alliance, to see nothing that sets it apart from the crowd is puzzling. "

      Only if you ignored the history of the company. Looks like the nothing produced, but for several press releases, is following the MS historical example perfectly.
      Richard Flude
      • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

        @Richard Flude

        Blah Blah Blah... I hate Microsoft... blah blah. is what I am reading.. It took an extra 6 - 8 months for Apple to make the same phone in white and they are major phone manufacturer too.
        bobiroc
      • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

        @Richard Flude Let's see how those Android updates are going ...
        I like coffee.
      • See the MS apologists are out

        Hate MS or saying it as it is. Guess it doesn't matter.

        Go the press release machine. Only a matter of time until they'll replace products;-)
        Richard Flude
    • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

      @tropolite Sure, we'll let it mature...

      In the mean time the "new" flagship from Nokia will miss the holidays in US as will all the other "flagships" of WP.
      That same holiday season Apple will have its latest out, Android will have not just one, but several phones with cutting edge hardware.

      And why would anybody wait for those "new" WP devices, when they are already a year behind. Spare your breath, if you wanna say that dual-core doesn't matter: http://gizmodo.com/5853863/browser-speed-test-nokia-lumia-800-vs-iphone-4s-vs-samsung-galaxy-s-ii

      Finally, what's the point of timely WP updates, when the software's clock is a year behind - no NFC, no dual-core...
      nuzayaz
      • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

        @nuzayaz Nokia's new flagship, the N9, was shipped to stores last month - in plenty of time for holiday shopping. The Lumias are two mid-level phones, the first of the new line. Expect a 500 series budget WP, followed by a new 900 series flagship in 2012 - maybe for the US launch.

        I don't get all the grousing. Nokia delivered more than they promised (not one, but TWO phones) and ahead of schedule to boot. For a company that typically announces a phone six months before it's able to ship it, I think that's a pretty neat turnaround.
        richardbrennan@...
  • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

    Give them some time, its barely 8 months...
    owlnet
    • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

      @owlnet

      And who would have expected that a partenership with MS and Nokia would produce phones? SJVN was obviously expecting the second coming.

      Try leaving your 20C UI behind SJVN and actually use a wp7 phone for a while and you;ll realise Nokia is already ahead of the ANdroid mess and the planned obsolescence of the iPhone.
      tonymcs@...
      • No plans for obsolescence

        <ul><I>the planned obsolescence of the iPhone</I></ul><br>You mean they are finally going to stop improving Windows Phone? Thank goodness! All we've heard for a year while WP has languished in the marketplace is "Wait for Tango! Wait for Mango! Wait for Nokia! Just you wait!"<p>So now it's going to stay the same and we can stop waiting? What if the stuff they have now doesn't sell any better than the stuff they've had all year? Won't they obsolete what they have now and change things?
        Robert Hahn
  • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

    Nokia moved to entirely different platform in 8 months and now have phones for the new platform. It is damn remarkable. What would you expect in 8 months?
    paul2011
    • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

      @paul2011

      Really? I'm sure the guts are similar to their other smartphones (ARM CPU, radio, etc.). I'm also sure MS sent some engineers over to help.
      itguy10
      • And yet it took Google and Motorola even longer

        @itguy10
        to come up with the Nexus one, issues and all.
        William Farrell
      • Just about every company ...

        @itguy10,

        ... that releases an initial product in an established market, does not release the best product at the time. Why? Because it is under pressure to release something, and then build on it. It almost invariably takes time for a company to eventually build the best products.

        What Nokia did in such a short time is absolutely remarkable. Also its Windows Phones contain exclusive mapping, music, and other software that far surpass software from other hardware manufacturers, and are among the best software in their classes. Therefore Nokia phones currently have a software edge over its competitors, which help differentiate them from other phones.

        I'm tired of reading bloggers complaints that Nokia's phones are disappointing. Bloggers need to view Nokia's performance in proper context, and appreciate Nokia has done a remarkable feat that will likely turn around the company in relatively short order, and has cleverly used software to differentiate its phones - unlike the competition.
        P. Douglas
      • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

        @itguy10
        Ever tried to port OS to a new platform in 8 months? Try it. Smarta$$...
        paul2011
      • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

        @itguy10 Why doesn't Google put ICS on all Android phones? I'm sure the guts are similar to their other smartphones (ARM, CPU, radio, etc.).
        I like coffee.
      • I would add...

        @itguy10

        Very similar, just look at N9 and tell me what are those ten differences... ;-)

        Can somebody enlighten me when N9 was started?
        Solid Water
      • RE: Microsoft/Nokia partnership: Nothing much so far

        @itguy10
        Yes they did, like they are helping you on a daily basis just to save your a** at your work, if you are still employed.
        Ram U
  • Makes sense as WP7 is a Turd

    With it's dismal (and declining) market share why would anyone want to put any effort into it? I mean why should I pay MS for something that won't sell and turns users off?

    Nokia phones pretty much have been on the decline since the early 2000's and this turd won't save them.
    itguy10
    • I guess that holds true for the underselling Nexus line of Phones

      @itguy10
      With it's dismal (and declining) market share why would anyone want to put any effort into it? I mean why should I pay Google for something that won't sell and turns users off?

      Nexus phones pretty much have been on the decline since the early 2009's and The Nexus S won't save them.

      They even had to but Motorola just to ensure that somebody would continue to make them!
      William Farrell