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Microsoft buys Nokia – Finally

Being the resident Finnish Big Man I have to say, it’s about time this happened.  It’s like Ross and Rachel on Friends.  Everyone new that Microsoft would by Nokia.  Well at least the 5 million Finnish people knew.  Granted it’s was just the phone division but that’s good for both.  I’ve said it before, Nokia needed a bit of shameless self promotion.  With Microsoft holding the brand, you will be hearing more of Nokia phones in the future.

Marketing or Lack There Of

Marketing had always been lacking at Nokia.  They had a great smartphone, the Nokia 9000, but never pushed it in the US.  The sleek one debuted in 1997 on the big screen in The Saint.  Yet it was invisible in the US.  Instead the US market got the Blackberry.  It was Nokia market to loose.

Yet talk to most Nokia fans and employees they were happy with skipping the US market.  I think it is really denial.  The argument is that the market for phones is high in India and China.  But I’m not sure if that’s for the lucrative smartphone, iPhone, Lumina, Galaxy, market.  We have all seen the 60 Minutes report where a 20-something factory worker at the iPhone plants sees her first working iPhone.  With the wage improvements there, she could buy an iPhone with a month’s wages.

I believe that the mobile phone/ smartphone markets are skewed.  When one looks at Apple or RIMM, all one sees is a smartphone.  But looking at Nokia (Samsung, LG, etc.) we also see the simpler discount and pre-paid phones.  The wiki definition of smartphone is a phone that is more than a phone.  It has a calendar and a phone book it’s a smartphone.  Most of us that have Android, iOS, or Windows phones would disagree.  So while Nokia may own the mobile phone market, I doubt they owned the smartphone market.  But that’s about to change.

This Is Great For Both

Microsoft has needed something to battle Android and iOS.  A Windows Phone platform is it.  There is so much that you can do when you own both the software and the hardware.  Risk is minimized.  This acquisition may also change the game in tablets, as Nokia has them as well.  The thing to watch is the Lumia 2010.

For Nokia, it couldn’t be better.  They got rid of the mobile phone market, temporarily.  They have the ability to license Nokia mobile devices again in 2016.  This acquisition allows them to focus on the much more lucrative market of switching technology, under the NSN brand.  I think that’s a huge part of the mobile story that most people forget.  The brains behind most of those antenna towers around the world are Nokia.  And the nice thing there is there’s no mass marketing or brand awareness needed.  As long as Microsoft doesn’t change the name, they can ride Microsoft’s coattails.

Not bad for a company that was founded as a paper mill in 1865 and used to make rubber boots and tires.

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