Nokia takes us behind the scenes of the brand's Android Pie development process

Nokia takes us behind the scenes of the brand's Android Pie development process
If you ever wondered how Nokia-branded smartphones consistently manage to stay ahead of the competition when it comes to timely software updates, you may want to take a look at this neat infographic uploaded to HMD Global’s servers.

HMD is the 2016-founded company behind Nokia’s unlikely resurgence, marketing and distributing Foxconn-manufactured handsets under an iconic name that once dominated the mobile tech scene.

As it turns out, the Finland-based startup follows a fairly standard Android 9 Pie optimization schedule, kicked off months ago with Google’s OS code deployment to chipset vendors. These can then choose to prioritize certain processors for faster updates, so when a specific device powered by a specific SoC takes an unusually long time to receive a major OS makeover, it’s not always the fault of the handset vendor.

The integration of “special Android One features and exclusive experiences for Nokia smartphones” actually happens in step 3 of the software development process, followed by field testing, lab testing, and beta testing.


If you feel that’s not enough tests, fret not, as Pie goodies still need to go through conformance standards testing, quality checks, and operator tests. Now let’s hear you complain about the late Android 9.0 adoption of the Nokia 8 and Nokia 8 Sirocco again.

Mind you, a grand total of eight Nokia smartphones have already cleared every individual stage of Android Pie development, optimization, and testing, with many more to follow. There doesn’t seem to be a secret recipe for the brand’s robust software support, although the lack of bloatware and skins definitely helps speed up the implementation of a new OS version.

The same goes for a successful beta testing program, and so far, more than 120,000 beta lab users have helped Nokia iron out last-minute bugs and “mature every software build.”

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32 Comments

1. meanestgenius

Posts: 22282; Member since: May 28, 2014

This is awesome, and gives us clear reaons as to why some Nokia branded smartphones by HMD get updated quicker than others, as opposed to the rumor of them delaying an update to help spur sales of a new smartphone. HMD is one of the best Android OEM's when it comes to full OS and security updates.

9. lyndon420

Posts: 6830; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Imagine where Nokia would be today had they gone with Android instead of holding out for Windows Phone?

11. meanestgenius

Posts: 22282; Member since: May 28, 2014

Exactly. I wonder this all of the time. They would definitely be in the top 5 global smartphone vendors, imo.

13. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3153; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

They would've been dead and buried. They didn't "hold out" for WP, Ballmer bailed them out after Meego went sideways on them. Everything happens for a reason, there are no coincidences. Nokia didn't have the resources to shift toward Android and Microsoft needed a manufacturer. Windows, courtesy of Nokia's PureView, gave us the type of smartphone cameras that were non-existent at the time and everybody else took notice. Sadly, Nokia has lost its imaging mojo because their cameras aren't a shell of their former selves. I have to think Microsoft's software was indeed better than anything Android or Apple has come up with because a 2015 Lumia 950 still puts most "flagships" to shame.

19. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

See this is what I don't get about the windows fanboys. We know the reality of what going with Windows got them, there is no going around that. To say, "OH ANDROID WOULD HAVE BEEN WORSE" is stupid because going with Windows destroyed them. How much worse can it get than losing everything and being sold for pennies?

20. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3153; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

There's nothing to get, Microsoft gave Nokia a cash infusion to at least make an attempt on Windows. Nokia was broke, there was no Android to be had in the state they were in. It was either swing for the fences with Windows or strike out on three pitches by themselves. I'm a webOS fan first and foremost and what happened to Nokia is exactly what happened to Palm. They were flat broke and it was either hitch their wagon to HP or face Chapter 7 liquidation. It was their only chance to stay afloat and they were forced to take that chance. It happens all the time in business and Sears is the latest company with a glorious past which will soon be history.

24. Marcwand3l

Posts: 446; Member since: May 08, 2017

"Nokia was broke" They weren't always broke, not the first time they started to sell Windows Phones anyway. Microsoft's incentive were pointless anyway. HMD already sells more phones in Europe than OEM's like LG, Sony or HTC and they've been on the market for just 3 years. Looks like the Android route is more successful by default. It won't be long until HMD will sell more smartphones than the old Nokia ever did.

23. Marcwand3l

Posts: 446; Member since: May 08, 2017

"Nokia didn't have the resources to shift toward Android" That's quite a big assumption that is incorrect. The shift towards Android would have been progressive and Nokia would have been able to leverage their Brand Image and Worldwide network to better compete and sell their phones. They put a lot of effort into Windows Phone, the same effort invested in Android would have yield much better results.

2. BCMWorld

Posts: 59; Member since: Mar 24, 2014

Unlike the iFruitOS which releases bugs in the name of update, no or few tests before release

3. baldilocks

Posts: 1540; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

And you know this how? Do you work for Apple? Are you part of internal testing? i'll wait.

4. Venom

Posts: 3729; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

Not to take Apple's side or anything, but issues from updates have occurred on Android. Don't be ignorant. https://community.phones.nokia.com/discussion/7109/nokia-7-plus-issues-after-stable-android-pie-update

10. lyndon420

Posts: 6830; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Sure...but apple is supposed to be better than the rest. They control the hardware and software...they are the only OEM that uses iOS.

14. Venom

Posts: 3729; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

Better than the rest is highly subjective. Technically speaking, Google controls the software backbone of Android. I'm not trying to take sides or anything. I'm just trying to be neutral.

5. meanestgenius

Posts: 22282; Member since: May 28, 2014

While I won't attack you by calling you ignorant for your comment, it is true that Android updates have been known to bring issues: https://www.theandroidsoul.com/essential-phone-oreo-update-problems-and-

15. Venom

Posts: 3729; Member since: Dec 14, 2017

I won't retract my previous comment because it was a pretty ignorant thing to say despite what some people think. Problems exist on both sides of the fence. https://community.phones.nokia.com/discussion/19629/wifi-issue-nokia-7-plus

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