Nokia’s sale to Microsoft is not anything new by now. Even the subsequent decision by Microsoft to kill off the Nokia name and replace it with Microsoft Lumia, or just Lumia, has been in the airwaves for quite some time. However, the popularity of the Nokia brand name is something that everyone understands only too well. Anybody interested in quality handsets must have owned a Nokia device at some point in their lives. Indeed, the executives at Nokia seem to understand this, and it seems that they could be planning to bring back Nokia branded handsets later on, probably starting 2016.
Maybe it is worth noting that not the entire Nokia Company was acquired by Microsoft, but just the Devices and Services division. In the deal, Nokia leased the ‘Nokia’ name and the Lumia trademark. However, this is only for a limited period of time, and Microsoft’s license will apparently end in 2016. The apparent interest in re-entering the smartphone industry comes in the wake of statements made by Nokia Corp CEO Rajeev Suri stressing the value of the Nokia brand in the smartphone industry. The same sentiments were echoed by Nokia Corp’s chief financial officer Timo Ihamuotila.
It’s still too early to speculate the platform under which Nokia would re-enter the industry, but its recent release of HERE maps for Android and the various Nokia X programs hint at an Android direction. Moreover, the success of Android is of significant impact on what Nokia could choose to ride on. For now, however, their hands are tied and they have to wait till the license with Microsoft ends.
However, there are way too many challenges in this path. For one, the majority of Nokia’s best employees and talent was whisked off to Microsoft with the acquisition. Furthermore, a large percentage of workers were laid off. This points to a very difficult time in restructuring the mobile devices division to the point that it churns out mobile phones with the quality that it was known for. So as much as Nokia may want to reclaim its lost glory, the industry has really changed and getting back the Nokia of old, with its iconic ringtone and ‘Connecting People’ tagline, will be quite a challenge. But my personal wish is that we see Nokia’s comeback, preferably running pure Android. With its history of quality and durability, this would greatly revolutionize the smartphone industry.