Yes, you read that right. Nokia won't be implementing Microsoft Windows Phone 7 platform on handsets.
But wait? What was that announcement all about the other day? Didn't we see Nokia CEO Elop and Microsoft CEO Ballmer on stage talking about Windows Phone?
Sure you did. But if you paid close attention to the Nokia/Microsoft pow-wow you'd have realized that at no time did either company mention "Windows Phone 7," only 'Windows Phone." I noticed this at the time, and as The Guardian's Charles Arthur said, it's critical:
Though the difference between Windows Phone 7 and Windows Phone may sound trivial, Elop, who previously ran the hugely profitable Office division of Microsoft, will have been keenly aware of the importance of the difference in naming and the need not to be seen at any future date to have misled investors, analysts or customers.
And that's a key difference. See, Windows Phone 7 is shipping right now, on dozens of handsets across a variety of vendors. But Microsoft is planning an update to the platform called Mango which might see the platform being rebranded as Windows Phone 7.5. But Mango is some way off, fall at the earliest. This means that Nokia handsets powered by Windows Phone 7.5 (we'll call it that for now ...) might arrive towards the end of the year, or maybe early 2012.
So ... Nokia's announced that it is making Windows Phone its primary smartphone platform, and Symbian being relegated to second place, what's Nokia going to sell for the remainder of 2011? Sure, sales of Symbian handsets won't wither and die overnight, but given this announcement they're unlikely to be stellar either. If I were an investor, I'd want some some clarity as to what Nokia will be doing over the next six to 12 months.
Windows Phone might be a good long-term gamble for Nokia, but in the short-term it have quite an adverse effect on revenue.