Nokia to design and licence smartphones starting with 2016
In a recent interview with Germany's Manager Magazin, Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri stated that the company plans to start designing and licensing smartphones in 2016.
Back in April, a report claimed that Nokia has this in mind for late 2016
when its agreement with Microsoft would allow such a move, and it looks like the claim was accurate.
Just months after selling its phone arm to Microsoft back in 2014 in a $7.2 billion deal
, Nokia designed the N1, an Android-based tablet.
Manufactured and commercialized by Taiwan's Foxconn, the Nokia N1
seems to have been the prototype of Nokia's upcoming business model in the smartphone market. As its agreement with Microsoft only prevents it to make and sell smartphones, Nokia will create smartphone designs. These designs will be licensed by other companies who will also purchase the right of using Nokia's name on their devices. The Nokia CEO did not reveal any particular partners, limiting his affirmations to "We will look for suitable partners".
If the Nokia N1 is any indication to the quality of upcoming Android-based Nokia smartphones, then we're looking forward to premium designs and build quality, high-end components, and a simple but efficient Android implementation.
Nokia's name seems to be at the center of a lot of major deals lately. This April, the company secured domination of the network equipment market by acquiring rival Alcatel-Lucent in a $17.8 billion deal
. Furthermore, Nokia is also now looking to sell HERE Maps division, with some of the alleged prospective buyers including German car makers
, and others.