Interview: Nokia's Richard Kerris on Windows Phone 8, Verizon and so much more

If you think RIM and Nokia are in the same boat, you should probably leave now as the company has bold plans, an even bigger vision, and the know-how to get it done. Neowin had a chance to sit down with Nokia's Richard Kerris, VP of Worldwide Developer Relations and he presented Nokia's side of the argument and explains how the company is truly turning the corner with its technology and is working on innovative solutions to distance itself from the rest of the market.

For those who do not know Kerris, it's highly recommended that you read his profile as he is not one to take a job simply because it was offered. After leaving several high-profile positions, including one with webOS, he did his diligence before signing up for his role at Nokia. His honesty about Nokia's situation is fair but also paints that the company is not oblivious to what is happening around them.

The interview kicked-off with a bang as for those of us who have been on Verizon, our phone selections has been Nokia-less but that is all about to change. According to Kerris about this situation, he said, "it wont be long", which is highly encouraging for those of use who want use the Nokia line of products but are not willing to switch carriers to make it happen; he gave no indication of timeline or what products may hit carriers outside of T-Mobile/AT&T.

Kerris knows that Nokia's dark days are not behind them but he also can see the light at the end of the tunnel. But the interview was not about the past, it was about what is ahead for Nokia and how Nokia is poised to make it through the tough times and come out stronger on the other side.

During the interview Kerris pulled out the PureView and if you need a reminder about that device, you can find the information here. Nokia has fantastic imaging technology and the PureView is the staple of that. Kerris was quick to point out that Nokia has previously said that the PureView technology would be coming to Lumia devices and he iterated that it would happen "very soon".

When it comes to developing for the Lumia series, or Windows Phone 7, Nokia is far from calling the system dead. Not even close, with 7.8 and other enhancements in the pipe, the product line is as vibrant as ever. Additionally, Kerris states that what Nokia is doing is no different than what Apple has done with the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 with Siri. 

Kerris states that the developers he has talked to want to target the millions in the install base with Lumia devices and that they will receive the added benefit that their applications will work on Windows Phone 8. He also believes that carriers will put together attractive options for updating your device to a Windows Phone 8 product, what these packages could look like, or will be, we do not have any information on that.

When it comes to looking at Nokia and it's product foundation, they filed for more patents last year than any other year in the history of the company, according to Kerris. In fact, their patent portfolio brings in just under a billion dollars a year. Kerris states that they have over 30,000 patents and 10,000 that are active and that they will aggressively defend them if they need to do so to protect their new technologies. 

What are these new technologies you ask? Don't worry, we asked. Nokia has a ton of investment in R&D and is turning concepts in to reality with bendable screens and a complete wrap around display so that when you want your device to be a camera, it looks like a camera. With bendable screens, you flex the display to zoom in or out, depending on the angle.

In addition, they are also working on making devices become aware of where they are. For example, when you walk in to your house after work, it hides all of your business emails and content or when a child picks of the device, it can detect the small hands and lock settings and email accounts.

We all know that Nokia devices are built tough and Kerris even tossed his Lumia 900 across the room and then picked it back up and it worked like the day it came off the assembly line and of course, no scratches on it either. He firmly stated that he stands behind all of Nokia's products and is proud of what the team is doing.

Kerris believes that Nokia will innovate its way out of its current situation and that change will continue this Fall with new products. And in the biggest sign of encouragement, Kerris states that this Spring "people will be climbing over themselves" to get at the new Nokia products.

Top Image Credit: MobileRoundup.com

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God, it would be awesome to have the phone show different content at work versus at home. I wish I could set my Windows Phone on a schedule or something. Lol

McKay said,
A Lumia 900 type device with a 1280x720 screen with the PureView camera would give me a Nerdgasm.

I'm really hoping they ditch Super AMOLED and use the Super LCD2 display in the HTC One X. That screen looks AMAZING!

I believe that I read somewhere that Nokia will keep the 610 around for a while as a low end phone and I'm sure once hardware companies all go with quad core arm chips that will be when the win8 duel core becomes the low end phones. per demand.

What I'd love to know is whether Microsoft can scale down the Windows NT based Windows Phone 8 to the low spec phones such as the 610 or will Nokia have a two tired strategy of using the Windows Phone 7 platform for low end devices until such time at the low end devices are capable (as technology filters down) to handle Windows Phone 8.

Mr Nom Nom's said,
What I'd love to know is whether Microsoft can scale down the Windows NT based Windows Phone 8 to the low spec phones such as the 610 or will Nokia have a two tired strategy of using the Windows Phone 7 platform for low end devices until such time at the low end devices are capable (as technology filters down) to handle Windows Phone 8.

Mr Nom Nom's said,
What I'd love to know is whether Microsoft can scale down the Windows NT based Windows Phone 8 to the low spec phones such as the 610 or will Nokia have a two tired strategy of using the Windows Phone 7 platform for low end devices until such time at the low end devices are capable (as technology filters down) to handle Windows Phone 8.

The cost difference between an S2 and an S4 isn't that much. The problem is that those chips are in high demand and we won't see a free flow of them until mid-2013. In a year, a low-end S4 and 512MB of RAM will be low end, with mid-end having 1GB and high end having quad S4 and 2GB RAM.

"no different than what Apple has done with the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 with Siri."

Actually, he coudn't be any more wrong. iPhone 4 still runs the same apps as 4S. But of course he's not going to be honest or truthful, he's trying to make everything seem as positive as possible since that's his job.

andrewbares said,
"no different than what Apple has done with the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 with Siri."

Actually, he coudn't be any more wrong. iPhone 4 still runs the same apps as 4S. But of course he's not going to be honest or truthful, he's trying to make everything seem as positive as possible since that's his job.


Read this:
Kerris states that the developers he has talked to want to target the millions in the install base with Lumia devices and that they will receive the added benefit that their applications will work on Windows Phone 8.

andrewbares said,
"no different than what Apple has done with the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 with Siri."

Actually, he coudn't be any more wrong. iPhone 4 still runs the same apps as 4S. But of course he's not going to be honest or truthful, he's trying to make everything seem as positive as possible since that's his job.

Siri is an app and it won't run on the iPhone 4

FoxieFoxie said,

W8 also requires secureboot and encryption

I know that, my point is that a feature supported by the 610 hardware will not be ported to it.

Fritzly said,

Will the Nokia 610 run NFC built on W8?

Just get a Galaxy Nexus with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and be done with it. Everything else (iOS, WP) sucks.

Basically the whole article seemed like "Nokia is going to be good I promise". It's not like this guy is going to be honest or say anything real truthful.

FoxieFoxie said,
Where is the interview?

All I see is some sort of text mash up with no questions/answers that I will not read

Exactly my thoughts.

FoxieFoxie said,
Where is the interview?

All I see is some sort of text mash up with no questions/answers that I will not read


Question-and-answer isn't the only way to format an interview article.

Oh Nokia....I love what Nokia stands for, I love the stuff they do and the products they make, but god, why couldn't you guys see earlier that symbian sucks?

I wish people would stop spouting the crap that Symbian sucks. It has several advantages that Windows Phone doesn't and never will have.

You know one thing that Symbian can do that your Windows Phone/Lumia can't? Work after a day without having to charge.

Miuku. said,
I wish people would stop spouting the crap that Symbian sucks. It has several advantages that Windows Phone doesn't and never will have. You know one thing that Symbian can do that your Windows Phone/Lumia can't? Work after a day without having to charge.

Once upon a time I would have said you were exaggerating because my Trophy 7 used to get days of use without needing to be charged. Now that I'm approaching the end of my 24 month contract, however, it really is less than a days use.. 16 hours at a push. It's pretty bad!

LazyAugust said,

Once upon a time I would have said you were exaggerating because my Trophy 7 used to get days of use without needing to be charged. Now that I'm approaching the end of my 24 month contract, however, it really is less than a days use.. 16 hours at a push. It's pretty bad!


Odd. I have had my Trophy from the day it came out and have no problem getting a day's charge. My significant other gets a day easy, and my friend gets a day easy... I would ideally want to get a weekend out of a charge, but that has more to do with the underpowered battery than anything else.

Honestly, you should see what the battery in the Symbian was and not compare apples to oranges...

Miuku. said,
I wish people would stop spouting the crap that Symbian sucks. It has several advantages that Windows Phone doesn't and never will have.

You know one thing that Symbian can do that your Windows Phone/Lumia can't? Work after a day without having to charge.


I wish people like you would stop spouting crap and pretending to like symbian when you're probably carrying an android or iOS phone. If symbian was really as good as you say, you'd be using symbian right now.

I was a symbian user for 7 years.

I think its already bin stated somewhere that Verizon will offer WP8 phones and none before that. If my carrier in the UK has an upgrade option so I can get a WP8 over 1 year early I might take them up on it (currently lumia 800 and its sweet as)

psionicinversion said,
I think its already bin stated somewhere that Verizon will offer WP8 phones and none before that. If my carrier in the UK has an upgrade option so I can get a WP8 over 1 year early I might take them up on it (currently lumia 800 and its sweet as)

Yeah, I can't wait to see what comes to Verizon... I hope they have good deals too.

I read somewhere that Nokia is burning through its cash reserves at such a rate that by late 2013 it'll be out of cash, out of interest what would probably happen then if things haven't been turned round?

thealexweb said,
I read somewhere that Nokia is burning through its cash reserves at such a rate that by late 2013 it'll be out of cash, out of interest what would probably happen then if things haven't been turned round?

No matter what happens, they won't be allowed to die.

TechJunkie81 said,

No matter what happens, they won't be allowed to die.

Exactly, Microsoft will keep them afloat like a rich father does a spoiled teenage girl

Enron said,
Don't forget they have a reserve $60 billion in their Ballmer account.

There's only so much the shareholders would allow to be given away for strategic reasons.

thealexweb said,

There's only so much the shareholders would allow to be given away for strategic reasons.

Mobile is the future and Nokia is their biggest partner in that. They've already invest $1 billion into the partnership, so to see them die is pointless.

thealexweb said,

There's only so much the shareholders would allow to be given away for strategic reasons.

Microsoft spent $6 billion on Xbox before it finally reached profitability.

Microsoft spent over $10 billion on Bing. And even after all that, it's still hemorrhaging money at about $2 billion PER YEAR.

Microsoft spent $6.3 billion on aQuantive -- and just wrote down $6.2 billion of that.

And Ballmer still has his job. Microsoft shareholders are willing to put up with quite a bit.

thealexweb said,
I read somewhere that Nokia is burning through its cash reserves at such a rate that by late 2013 it'll be out of cash, out of interest what would probably happen then if things haven't been turned round?

Here we go... Because they never said that they expected a hard transitional period or anything... *sigh*

M_Lyons10 said,

Here we go... Because they never said that they expected a hard transitional period or anything... *sigh*

There's transition periods and then there's risking everything and going for broke xD

thealexweb said,

There's transition periods and then there's risking everything and going for broke xD

They had to. And being just another Android vendor was not the answer.

Nokia will pick up again. The reason their shares were dropping is mainly due to Symbian dying out for consumers. Soon they will focus on Windows Phone 8 and once implemented, things will start looking good for them again.