Can the Nokia Lumia 900 reinvent the Nokia brand to what it once was?
In 2002, Research In Motion, the maker of BlackBerry, began to get more aggressive with their smartphone marketing, and had the insight to attack the business and government sectors. This strategy paid off for them as RIM began to erode Nokia's stronghold in the industry.
By 2005, there was a paradigm shift in Nokia's market focus. The handset maket seemed to shift their target demographic from high end consumer and business customers, to the emerging markets, focusing on volume rather than profit. Europe, Asia, and South America have always been dominated by pre-paid customer bases, so Nokia aimed to control these markets by selling large volumes of phones, often with very few features, but for very cheap. This strategy still exists in most of the eastern global markets where handset selection is largely driven by low up front cost, where Nokia excels.
We've noticed that since 2007's introduction of Apple iPhone, Nokia has lacked much of a progressive presence in the United States and around the world. In an attempt to change course, Nokia announced last year that it was ending production of its stale Symbian OS to partner with Microsoft to release smartphones sporting Windows. Nokia's financial pains couldn't be more evident, with their stock hitting an all time low of $3.90 last week.
Nokia is now trying to completely reinvent its image with the launch of the AT&T Lumia 900 we wrote about last week. Nokia and AT&T have partnered with Microsoft to create a marketing campaign like we've never seen before. We've seen Nokia in good times and bad, and it's exciting to see such a major product launch with the hype we're seeing with the Lumia 900.
Nokia's Lumia 900 has a few things going for it:
Aggressive pricing - AT&T and Nokia have gotten very aggressive with the pricing on the new Lumia 900. At almost half the cost of Apple's most inexpensive iPhone 4S, it gives users wanting a full featured smartphone experience an option without having to spend nearly as much up front.
Microsoft Windows - Without a doubt, the top feature of the phone is its OS. Microsoft has done a great job of creating a solid, pleasant mobile operating system. While customer feedback isn't as good as iOS, we have to give Microsoft credit for putting out a mobile version of Windows that can rival the functionality of its biggest competitor.
Gaming niche - While iOS and Android have put a great deal of focus into attracting the gaming community, Microsoft is going one step further to integrate the Xbox LIVE experience into their Windows Phone handsets. This is likely to attract a lot of users as Xbox LIVE already has tens of millions of subscribers.
Marketing to the power of three - Generally we've seen handset manufacturers team up with carriers for co-branded marketing campaigns, but the Lumia 900 launch is the first time we've seen the marketing power of three. AT&T, Nokia, and Microsoft have teamed up to drive sales through Microsoft stores, Nokia stores, as well as AT&T stores. The hopes of all three is that a collective marketing effort will grab the various different demographic customer bases that each company can bring to the table.
What does all this mean? We think it is Nokia's last chance at the consumer mobile phone industry. It's unlikely Nokia is going to disappear anytime soon with their low end handset popularity in emerging markets, but this may be their last chance to prove themselves as a viable player in the lucrative smartphone business. So far we're hearing that Lumia 900 sales have been extremely strong. It appears to be a great success for Nokia, so we look forward to hearing the company discuss the product on their next financial results call.
We've been hearing from users as to opinions on the new Lumia 900 in specific, but what do you think of the impact this launch has on the overall reputation of Nokia? Can this new handset turn the direction of Nokia's struggling path?
1. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5478; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
"Can the Nokia Lumia 900 reinvent the Nokia brand to what it once was?"
I DON'T THINK SO! NEED SOMETHING MORE!
6. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5478; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
Nope! It is just mine impartial opinion and I think that Nokia Lumia 900 can't reinvent the Nokia brand to what it once was.
18. Hafiz (Posts: 78; Member since: 20 Dec 2011)
wtf!! why is everyone disliking this comment... I think he is absoluetly right! I don't think wp7 is enough. They need wp8 to reinvent the Nokia brand to what it once was.
20. PhoneArenaUser (Posts: 5478; Member since: 05 Aug 2011)
I don't say that Nokia is bad company or that Nokia Lumia 900 is crap, I just say that, in mine opinion Nokia Lumia 900 can't reinvent the Nokia brand to what it once was, they need something more.
21. SleepingOz (unregistered)
Nokia fanboys are worst than iSheeeps!
3. FoneAddict (Posts: 206; Member since: 05 Jul 2011)
No. Lumia 900 is too little too late.
Nokia need to go back to the drawing board.
19. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
wtf are you talking about? another blind fanboy. If it doesn't have a quad core it's worthless?
29. steelicon (Posts: 309; Member since: 02 Apr 2011)
Finland should criminalize economic / industrial sabotage and arrest Stephen Elop.
7. ryq24 (Posts: 501; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
initial sales is good coz those who want one rush to buy one. after a few weeks, that is when we will know if nokia lumia have staying power.
9. alterecho (Posts: 1082; Member since: 23 Feb 2012)
Fantastic handset but the OS upgrade is a big '?'. OS is quite solid, but has some quirks. Like tranferring pdfs. WP8 has massive potential but too bad its not confirmed if existing wp7 handsets get the upgrade.
10. snowgator (Posts: 3209; Member since: 19 Jan 2011)
Yes. It can. And it will. 1st step accomplished: Very good launch. 2nd step already shown: It launched with a bug, Nokia fixed it AND refunded money. Nokia proved it will support it's customers. 3rd step: Show some longevity. Still be selling well in 2 or 4 months.
Verizon and Sprint have already said or been rumored to want WP8 Nokia devices. Nokia will be a huge winner. But as someone who likes HTC and Samsung, my question is can they keep up with Nokia? (In WP devices, I mean)
14. RobotMan (Posts: 125; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
Are you joking ? 1 st, Launch when AT&T close for holiday. 2nd. Simple OS also having bug which they have to give free not to lose face because of beta ad. 3rd You come from the future ?
12. pongkie (Posts: 502; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)
I tried wp for the 1st time today. A lumia 800 demo unit unlike before i cant see any demo unit when a was looking for a phone. I think its nice but unfortunately they didn't even connect to a wifi so i didn't get to tinker on it much
15. steelicon (Posts: 309; Member since: 02 Apr 2011)
Nokia needs to be Nokia again. Nowadays, Nokia Lumia 900 is being manufactured by a Chinese company named Compal, and soon by another Chinese company named Foxconn. They are using off-the-shelf components for the Nokia Lumia 900 and might as well use it for the rest of the Lumia lines altogether. This is very distressing since:
A.) Using off-the-shelf components may be a compromise in quality;
B.) QA and QC might not be up to spec;
C.) Loss of the excellent I/O. Now this is very distressing since Nokia's flagships have been known to have, i.e., HDMI, USB OTG, FM Radio Receiver, FM Radio Transmitter, 3.5" stereo out jack with AV out, Bluetooth filesharing transfers, etc.,
Again, I am for Nokia, but Nokia needs to be 100% Nokia again, in terms of hardware, quality and value. I, for one, am intent on purchasing the Nokia 808 PureView RM-807 just because of the excellent I/O Nokia brings and at least future updates are somehow assured up to 2016. I cannot say the same for Nokia Lumia series right now, whether they will receive the Windows Phone 8 upgrade, which is just around the corner. Nokia 808 PureView on the other hand, now THAT is 100% Nokia smartest cameraphone! (Y)
22. DFranch (Posts: 140; Member since: 20 Apr 2012)
Doesn't Foxcon make the iPhone? I'm no fan of the iPhone, but Foxconn seems to do a good job assembling them.
a) How are off the shelf components a compromise in quality? They might be a compromise in performance (not that WP7 needs the fastest), but the components are proven reliable by several manufacturers.
b) They certainly have egg on their face because of the connection bug, but the speed with which they fixed it was impressive.
c) I really have no need for HDMI on my phone, I've never even seen USB OTG as an option on a phone, i'm fairly certain it has FM radio, What phone has an FM transmitter, Bluetooth filesharing might be nice. What would really be nice is to be able to put files on the phone whthout going through the Zune Software.
23. steelicon (Posts: 309; Member since: 02 Apr 2011)
Right. Don't put in too much so as not to have a competing edge with respect to other flagships. Brilliant idea, I suppose. Just like putting Elop as the CEO of Nokia.
However, as I recall, FLAGSHIPS are supposed to have SOMETHING for EVERYONE, that way EVERYONE can consider owning it and the high price is justified because it SIMPLY IS A FLAGSHIP product that includes ALMOST EVERYTHING, including the kitchen sink if ever necessary. Sometimes the LACK of even just ONE SINGLE FEATURE can sometimes be a DEAL BREAKER to some potential clients.
Remember, we are talking about flagship units here, not the run-of-the-mill off-the-shelf components assembled units. Flagships deserve more respect and attention from the manufacturers, otherwise end users won't respect them any time at all.
16. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
Don't rush into things.
Elop made a huge mistakes announcing Symbian's dead and giving up Meego (they didn't learn anything since maemo) but they are not screwed yet.
Nokia has showed that still has some aces up it's sleeve.
Lumia 800 or 900 are a great phones. They are not quad cores but I don't care. They both deliver smooth performance and outstanding design.
Apollo will be the next huge step and opportunity for Nokia.
Still, I've got mixed feelings about Elop.
Did he put Nokia's existence at risk on purpose to force the management to merge with microsoft?
Or is he a visioner and see a huge opportunity in microsoft?
24. 7thspaceman (Posts: 1085; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
Folks I think the Nokia 900 is one of the Best Windows 7 series smart phone you can buy. However The Nokia Windows 8 Apollo class smart phones with dual core CPU, High def screens, NFC, and Pure vue Camera's are Truly Nokia's 2012 Flag ship smart Phones. They will come to market with 80000 to 100000 Apps especially the APPs People like Most. The only draw back I see in Windows 8 smart phones with dual core CPU's and High def screens is battery life the More High tech you put in a smart phone the more current your battery has to put out to run all that stuff. I am almost dead sure the Lumia 610, 710, 800 and 900 will be upgraded to Windows 8 OS because Nokia is smart enough to sell smart phones that wont cost you an arm and leg to Own the Old lumia line will be low cost windows 8 single core smart phones. I think some People will but them. a windows 8 Lumia 900 selling for 100 dollars less than they are now is a steal folks and it looks good too! hey I would buy one
25. charudutt (Posts: 13; Member since: 18 Apr 2012)
i m sure nokia will bcome NO 1.... Its the best!!!! i love it!!!1
27. SemperFiV12 (Posts: 765; Member since: 09 Nov 2010)
"You can DO IT!"
Things will be fine (IMO), because:
1) It is truly a GREAT product
2) Once the awareness catches up to the masses (heavy marketing push), demand will increase.
3) Multiplier effect.
28. nat_frost (Posts: 4; Member since: 30 Dec 2011)
The sad thing is that Nokia's financial woes are just the fault of Elop.
He announced that Symbian was dead in Feb 2011 and that they were going with WP.
The major problem was that they had no WP phones to show to the world (Lumia phones only arrived late 2011) and that they were still releasing Symbian phones throughout 2011. But because he osborned his own products, nobody was going to buy them - so sales crashed.
People say that Nokia was doomed because of the rise of the iPhone and Android phones. No doubt they were a contributing factor to the gradual decline, but even in 2010, Nokia still had a massive worldwide presence.
Before the Elop effect (combo of the Osborne and the Ratner effect) in Q4 2010, Nokia was at top with 33%, 75% in China, 70% in India, 60% in Singapore. In fact it was the market leader in every market apart from USA.
They already had a migration strategy from Symbian to Meego with Qt, and they had a contract with China Mobile (the biggest network carrier in the world) that they will use Meego so in effect Nokia could have had 12% of the world's mobile phone market share.
Also NTT DoCoMo had agreed to use Symbian on their smartphones. (Since Nokia's annoucement, both have moved to Andriod) So really overall, things were looking good, at least on the smartphone side of their business. There was no real need to move to WP.
To put it into context, Nokia was selling twice as much smartphones than Apple in 2010 having sold 100.3M units compared to 47.5M units. Apple's worldwide smartphone sales market share was 15.9 with Nokia's 33%, with RIM at 16%, Samsung at 8%.
Worldwide smartphone OS market share in 2010 was;
Symbian - 39%
Android - 18%
Worldwide smartphone install base 2010:
Symbian - 49%
Blackberry - 17%
iOS - 11%
Android - 9%
To say that Nokia's presence in 2010 had diminished to the point that they had to move to WP would be factually incorrect.
Even if Nokia had to go to WP, the Burning Platforms Memo was a terrible terrible idea, wiping huge amounts of profit and market share and destroying carrier and consumer trust in the Nokia brand. Of course, now, it is impossible to go back to Symbian/Meego because Elop destroyed it.
For more info read:
And on the Elop Effect: