Nokia: the Debacle and Ending up in the Hands of Microsoft

Nokia: the Debacle and Ending up in the Hands of Microsoft

Picture of mobile phone

Mobile phone: image credit-Wikimedia commons

Nokia; the word itself was synonymous to mobile phone once. When the word ‘Nokia’ was mentioned in an article it was customary to add the embellishment – the Finnish Cell phone Giant. Those were the days of Nokia. They were atop the peak. So, there was no going up; they could only go down. And they did exactly that. They slid down and fell comfortably into the strong hands of another giant, the Microsoft. Will the woes of Nokia end? Or will it simply cease to be an entity at all?

It was in 1865 that the mining engineer Fredrik Idestam built a mill to manufacture paper in Tamere, a town in Finland. Another mill was established by him in 1868, near a town known as Nokia. Later, Idestam along with his friend Leo Mechelin floated his business as a new company named Nokia Company. It was in the year 1871. The (success) story of Nokia begins there.

Nokia did a variety of business through the years which include paper, rubber, hydro-power production, cable. Everything was brought under a new corporate in 1922 and was named Nokia Corporation. Products of Nokia included paper, vehicle tire, footwear, TV, communication cable, computer, machines for power generation and what not!

In 1990’s they decided to concentrate on telecommunication industry. They, along with another company Salora developed the mobile communication standard known as the ARP standard and the first public mobile phone network was established in Finland in the year 1971. From then on there was no real opponent to Nokia mobile phones till the year 2001. That was the peak. Then the slow descent began and what happened later is something everyone knows.

Brands like Samsung began to eat into the mobile business share of Nokia. And finally their market share and revenues slumped drastically. What can be the reason? Some put it very simply – turning away ones face from new technology; not caring to give what the people want. Or still simply put, an adamant refusal to update! Is it that simple; I don’t know. There may be other reasons too.

People, especially the younger generation, the main consumers of smart phones, wanted android based mobile phones. But, Nokia was not ready to provide just that! And that worked their undoing. May be, they loved their own child, symbian too much. And they had to pay the price for it.

Nokia became aware of the soil eroding under their feet. Something should be done. What did they do? They introduced Windows phones in Lumia series. Beautiful handsets they are. Beautiful in looks and in performance alike. But, that was not enough to contain the Android invasion. Why did Nokia decide never to make Android phones?

Now, I am holding my mobile phone in my hands. It is a Nokia; Nokia E5 to be exact. This is the third mobile phone I have had. All of them were Nokias. The first one was a Nokia 1100. Then I changed to another Nokia and I don’t know its model number. Then I changed to a Nokia 3606 and then to what I am holding at present, a Nokia E5. All these phones I liked very much and they have never let me down. Am I like Nokia, aging and refusing to update?

I am not an Android fan and I have never used an Android phone. Like Nokia, I may also be reluctant to update! But, there is one thing everyone agrees to – as far as hardware is concerned, other brands are nowhere near Nokia. No one can match the battery life of a Nokia. You throw a Nokia mobile on to the ground; in most cases nothing will happen, it will work as it did before. That’s Nokia.

Submitted by Rana Prathap Sat, 09/14/2013 - 21:51

I am having an android phone and like most people, I am really happy with it. It is so intuitive in terms of functionality, performance and ease of use. If Nokia would have had an android phone, I wouldn't have gone for anything else, but it is such a shame that fine hardware like that of Nokia's doesn't get one of the best operating systems in the world. The timing of Microsoft to take over Nokia can't get any better than this, as Nokia was planning to release an Android phone shortly. If such a thing happens, then I am sure Windows Mobile will loose a large portion of its user base. Thanks for this interesting article.

Submitted by Rana Prathap Sun, 09/15/2013 - 14:25

What I meant say was that Nokia was having plans to release an android phone soon. But Microsoft knew it and they feared that they will loose user base for Windows Mobile. This can be a factor that pushed them into taking on Nokia, to make sure that does not happen.

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