Editorial

Can Nokia reverse Windows Phone's fortunes

There is no doubting that Microsoft needs Nokia’s new Windows Phone 7 based mobile phones to be a hit with both the public and the media when they get in London on Wednesday. In saying that, there is very little doubt that Nokia needs the launch to be a major turn around for themselves too, especially after the huge decline in sales that the company has seen over the last few years.

The question is, how do both companies turn things around? Nokia needs to get their phones selling again while Microsoft desperately need consumers to buy into their new OS.

At the moment Nokia isn’t seen a major sales force in America, they need to become one if there is any chance of Windows Phone 7 becoming anything more than a poor selling but underrated OS while placing another nail in Nokia’s coffin. To boost their sales, Nokia really needs to push themselves with carriers in America, both during their announcements this week and during the months after. The worry at the moment is that Nokia has stated that they will only sell devices in “select markets” at first. Which rumors in the industry are suggesting would exclude the US at launch.

Some of Nokia’s new phones need to be cheap too; at the moment there are very few low-priced Windows Phone handsets, a section of the market that Android thrives on. Nokia devices have been great sellers in the past thanks to their low cost range and this could be a great way to drive Windows Phone 7 to a large collection of consumers. I remember specifically choosing a Nokia phone when I was younger simply because it looked decent and was cheap for a pay as you go device and this is where Microsoft are missing out at the moment.

Most handsets released since Windows Phone 7 was first announced have been far too similar to each other to stand out, something that Nokia could well change if their excellent Nokia N9 design is anything to go by. It may seem like a small thing, but better designs will help differentiate Nokia from others and boost sales.

Apart from some of the major Microsoft news sites and Microsoft friendly press there hasn’t been a great deal of hype for the Nokia press conference, most likely because the main details and specs of the handsets seem to have been potentially leaked to many people for months, something that HTC and Apple manage to keep from the public eye thus building interest.

Windows Phone 7 is a respectable OS; there is no doubt about it. Yes I personally find it hard to get on with and feel that apps need to be cheaper to compete with Android and iOS, but that doesn’t blind me to the fact that it is well designed and has a unique feel to it. The more competition there is in this market, the better it will be for everyone and Nokia could be the company to bring that.

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