Nokia officially looking for a "world-class partner" to re-enter the smartphone business
Nokia today issued an official statement regarding its plans to make and sell mobile phones again. According to Nokia Technologies spokesman Robert Morlino, the company does aim to re-enter the smartphone business, but, if that happens, Nokia will not be producing devices itself.
Morlino is reminding the world that, when Nokia sold its Devices and Services business to Microsoft, it also gave up on the "manufacturing, marketing, and channel distribution capabilities" needed to develop and sell mobile phones. Thus, Nokia believes that "the right path back to mobile phones" is via a brand-licensing model. More exactly, Nokia is now looking for "a world-class partner" that should take care of manufacturing, selling, and marketing Nokia-branded handsets, while also providing customer support. In this partnership, Nokia would be responsible for "guiding the design and technology differentiation" of products.
According to Nokia, we will definitely not see any new Nokia-branded phones being released before the fourth quarter of 2016 (this being part of the agreement with Microsoft). Of course, until then, the company can certainly start designing handsets.
Nokia is already using the brand-licensing model for the well-received N1 Android tablet, which is manufactured and sold with the help of Foxconn.
All this is in line with a report released last month - so Nokia is indeed planning a comeback. Well, we're looking forward to seeing what can come out of this.