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Nokia - No More Symbian Phones After 2012 234

Posted by samzenpus
from the end-of-the-line dept.
mikejuk writes "After the decision to go with Windows Phone 7 it has been obvious that the fate of the Symbian Phone — the phone that sold more than iPhone or Android — wasn't good. However where there is life there is hope and some developers and users clung to the hope that there might be more Symbian phones in the future. Perhaps they could coexist with Nokia Windows Phone 7 devices. Now, in a open letter to developers Nokia have made it clear that they will create no more Symbian phones after 2012 and they will just wait for the old phones to fade way while trying to sell Windows Phones to the existing users."
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Nokia - No More Symbian Phones After 2012

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 28, 2011 @05:51AM (#35636520)

    ...is coming in 2012!

    • by Tor (2685) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:15AM (#35636682) Homepage

      The biggest issue was not that they abandoned Symbian. They were already set to do that anyway, what with MeeGo taking over on their highest-end devices and gradually onto mid-tier smartphones.

      The biggest blunder was that they abandoned Qt as a development platform. That was their one strategy that would have kept new applications and development coming. You'd write an app using Qt (with some enhancements), and would with minimal effort be able to tailor both Symbian^3 and MeeGo devices.

      That train has now left the station. There is now NO SINGLE application environment that a developer can use to tailor current and future Nokia phones. Not Java/J2ME. Not Symbian. Not MeeGo/Maemo. Not Qt.

      Nokia has made a lot of serious blunders throughout the last few years (the N85 hardware quality, the N97 software quality, an ASD style management, etc). Allowing themselves to be completely hijacked by Elan/Microsoft for a last ditch futile attempt to promote WP7 is nothing short of astounding. The worlds largest cell phone maker, and at one point in recent history Europe's most valuable company, completely destroyed as little more than a pawn in Steve Ballmer's clumsy quest for making Microsoft relevant again is simply nothing short of astounding.

      Nokias. Biggest. Blunder. Ever.

      • by eshefer (12336) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:36AM (#35636792) Homepage Journal

        yeah.

        from a buisness POV this makes even less sense.

        if winmo7 fails - they're dead.
        If the Winmo7 strategy works, everyone will go tho winmo7 and gut them. then they'll be dead.

        Nokia's ex-CEO said something about wsitching to android is like peeing yourself in winter time for warmth. all I see when I look at Nokia is a giant puddle, and the urin wasn't even warm to begin with.

        • by dbcad7 (771464)
          If it fails, they will jump on the Android train and get a new CEO.
          • by eshefer (12336)

            have you ever tried jumping on a moving train?

            unless they have teams working on android compatability NOW, they'll be dead.

              it will take them more then a year to ship a Winmo7 based product. how long do you think it will take them to ship an android product? where do you think HTC, Motorola and the rest of the gang will be by the time they ship and android version. (and we're talking about AT LEAST two years from now. how much cash will they have by then?

            i

            • by Zemran (3101)

              I doubt that they would have needed to change direction like everyone thinks. They needed to get their act together and sort out what they were doing but I think they could have aimed for the middle ground and kept a sizeable market. They still make some great dumb phones and not everyone wants a half hearted attempt at a computer weighing down their pocket. Do not get me wrong, I am happy for the /. crowd who want to have a cray in their pocket but most people out their do not see why they need so much

          • Sure they can do that, but will it really matter? By then they'll have lost a lot of money, a lot of market share, a lot of mind share and brand value. And switching to Android will not prevent the rest of the Android OEMs from gutting them. In fact it probably will be a much more brutal gutting, because while with WinPho7 Nokia are at least getting in the game early on in the life of the platform with Android they will be 5-ish years behind most of their competitors.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Lumpy (12016)

          Business POV it makes perfect sense.

          IF WinMo fails, the Board and the executives all will make millions in corporate golden parachutes, there is negative risk to them. The Major shareholders will make a profit from the liquid state of the company. Who gives a rats ass about the minor shareholders.

          If WinMO succeeds , The Board and Executives all will make Bigger Millions in corporate golden parachutes, There is a bigger negative risk to them. The Major Shareholders will make a tidy profit in the stock ex

        • Re:The end of Nokia (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 28, 2011 @08:16AM (#35637260)

          Nokia's ex-CEO said something about wsitching to android is like peeing yourself in winter time for warmth. all I see when I look at Nokia is a giant puddle, and the urin wasn't even warm to begin with.

          You have to see it in context. The "ex-CEO" was referring to Nokia, who had the strings for QT and Meego on handsets in their hands. To not develop that and instead go for a competitor's platform would be a waste of resources. Furthermore, it wasn't Nokia's ex-CEO, but the guy who Nokia's board ditched for the M$ trojan that is CEO now, even though he had been next in line. To the end he was extremely pro-Meego, i.e. pro-Open Source. When word came out that the board of directors (some say due to pressure from big American investors) chose the trojan he handed in his resignation, and thus all hope for an open handset line with Nokia hardware was crushed.

        • Re:The end of Nokia (Score:4, Informative)

          by Jerry (6400) on Monday March 28, 2011 @12:47PM (#35641180)

          When Elan first arrived at Nokia he made a big rah rah speech about Qt and Symbian. But, the move to Winp7 occurred so quickly that it is obvious the move was planned from his arrival, if not earlier. Ealn, the former MS exec who is the 7th or 8th largest individual Microsoft stockholder, depending on market variations, stands to profit EVEN MORE from the $1 BILLION dollar "investment" in Nokia by Microsoft. His share of MS stock is worth less than $5 million. Even 5% of that $1B would give him 10X more than his MS stock is worth.

          As it is, Nokia traded their $42 Billion dollar market cap for $1B cash, which caused their market cap to drop $11B, and it is continuing on its plunge toward the penny stock basement. And, it killed Qt on Nokia's phones AND as a dev tool on Window's platform. Two birds with one stone.

          How does this NOT look like a corporate hijacking of another company's market space, and for chump change?

      • by erroneus (253617) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:37AM (#35636802) Homepage

        I basically agree with you. It was definitely not the decision to ditch Symbian. Frankly, I was never impressed with Symbian in the first place. I never got a chance to play with MeeGo because they abandoned my N810 before they could port the software over to it.

        And the decision to go with Windows phone? Well, pretty much everyone knew what that meant from the first news of it. I have never known a happy Windows phone user. Never. Not one. Some might intuitively thing the best MS Exchange support would be found there -- wrong -- it was iPhone. Microsoft once measured their success by how much "piracy" was going on with their apps, their OSes and the apps written for their OSes. "Look how popular we are!" Have a look at any file sharing site... see anything for Windows phones? I can't say that I have ever seen anything except, perhaps, OS update loads for Dell Axiom... I know, not a phone, but you see have far I had to go?

        Microsoft isn't ever going to be mainstream with their Windows phones.

        And still the industries out there cannot manage to resist Microsoft's call. When Microsoft partners up with you, watch out. If the partnership goes bad, you are the loser. If the partnership goes good, Microsoft will buy you in short order. This has been going on for a very long time. No one seems to notice.

        • And still the industries out there cannot manage to resist Microsoft's call. When Microsoft partners up with you, watch out. If the partnership goes bad, you are the loser. If the partnership goes good, Microsoft will buy you in short order. This has been going on for a very long time. No one seems to notice.

          Nokia stupidly brought onboard an ex-Microsoft/Adobe/Macromedia guy as CEO [wsj.com]. Sure these companies have all been successful in some regards, but they generally write awful bloated and insecure software, which is not something I'd want on a lightweight mobile device.. or indeed any device.

        • I'm reminded of a quote I saw on a LUG;

          "However, I can count the number of companies that became successful by partnering with Microsoft on one finger (Intel). If you shake hands with Microsoft, you better count your fingers afterwards." - Travis H.

        • I've been writing an internal application for WP7 (small company, chose WP7 for some reason) and I think the actual OS itself could be OK, maybe even good, but it's got tons of WTF moments. Like how I have to change the phone's orientation to get access to the address bar in IE, or the ancient version of IE used; they could have at least used something between IE 8 and 9 and upgrade when needed. The marketplace sucks currently; once they add search it'll be OK on the devce.

      • by jimicus (737525)

        I don't think Nokia actually have a cohesive strategy - or if they do, they're not engaging their own staff with it.

        It's anecdotal - and I won't go into detail because I don't think it's entirely appropriate - but I've interviewed there and my impression was very much a company running around like the proverbial headless chicken trying desperately to come up with an idea that would enjoy some serious success, but seldom with any thought or strategy behind those ideas.

        • by wisty (1335733)

          How about - focus on hardware, UI, marketing, distribution, and operations; and ride on someone else's app* store.

          * application, sorry Steve.

          • by jimicus (737525)

            I don't think it's as simple as that.

            I think the entire company is systemically set up with a lot of different units pulling in different directions with no cohesive plan for how any given unit is going to help the business - if the interview I had was anything to go by, the unit itself wasn't entirely sure how its plans were going to help the business!

      • by plover (150551) *

        Abandoning Qt? That's really what you think is driving the nail in the coffin of Nokia? Go reread the Burning Platform memo. Some meaningless choice between a third rate OS or a fourth rate OS isn't going to make a difference, because those really aren't the sales differentiator that geeks seem to wish they were. It's now about cheap imports flooding their market. It's about a hundred factories in Shenzhen province each spitting a hundred thousand units a day out for about five hundred thousand dollar

      • did Nokia never check their history? if so they would have known about Sendo, who had an interesting run-in with Microsoft quite a few years ago.

        http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/09/13/sendo_ms_settle/ [theregister.co.uk]
      • by miknix (1047580)

        Allowing themselves to be completely hijacked by Elan/Microsoft for a last ditch futile attempt to promote WP7 is nothing short of astounding.

        Well.. it was a smart decision from Elan/Microsoft. Here in Europe, Nokia remains as a respectable and reputable cellphone brand. There are a lot of Europeans that would buy a Nokia just because it is Nokia and not because it runs whatever crap they put on it. However I kind of expect WP7 to damage that respectable image that Nokia has on European consumers.

      • it goes beyond just development environment. It's like saying iOS is doing well because they chose Objective C.

        The problem Nokia had, continues to have, and will have in the future is that they have no goddamned vision when developing products. The N8 hardware was well received, however, the Symbian^3 software was a goddamned joke compared to iOS and Android(and possibly BB).

        They're an engineering company that's in desperate need of designers and artsy fartsy types.

    • > ...is coming in 2012!

      Of course! That's when the Maeian calendar ends!

    • They seemed to jump over the Embrace phase though, and go directly to Extermination.
      We don't even have consumer statistics on Nokia's WP7 products and they already announced the extinguishment of Symbian. Yes, sounds like the beginning of a zombie Nokia to me..

  • by 1s44c (552956) on Monday March 28, 2011 @05:53AM (#35636528)

    Why Nokia? Why? Do the management like Microsoft money more than they like staying in business?

    • by pablo_max (626328) on Monday March 28, 2011 @05:56AM (#35636550)

      I agree that MS is a losing proposition, but symbian will also quickly bring the company to an end. It is a truly terrible OS compared to a modern streamlined OS like iOS of Android.

      • by theweatherelectric (2007596) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:14AM (#35636670)

        I agree that MS is a losing proposition, but symbian will also quickly bring the company to an end. It is a truly terrible OS compared to a modern streamlined OS like iOS of Android.

        Yes. On the other hand, I find Maemo to be better than both iOS and Android. I think the problem was that Nokia lost focus when they decided to start with MeeGo. It would have been wiser to maintain focus on Maemo for another year or two while treating MeeGo as more of a background project.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          As an owner of a N900, and having used an iPhone and Android device once, I find Maemo's UI eye-gougingly horrible. The UI concepts are great (top-left everywhere to multitask, click the empty space to go back, bottom-right for fullscreen toggle, etc.) But the execution of the design is terrible. Nokia really doesn't know how to make advanced features easily accessible. To prove my point: Look at the wireless settings page. It looks like you scaled network-manager to that tiny screen. Now, look at the defa
      • by Compaqt (1758360) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:28AM (#35636744) Homepage

        It wasn't about Symbian. It was about Qt, an target which would have allowed developers to program for current and future devices (and desktops).

        They were trying like crazy to get people to develop for them, what with the $10 million prize and all.

        Here's a recent little plea [peer360.com] from Nokia to developers:

        What I can promise you is that we will not just abandon Symbian users or developers. As a very minimum, we have a legal obligation, varying in length between countries, to support users for a period of time after the last product has been sold. Our intention is that when users come to the end of the natural lifecycle of their Symbian device they will make the change to a Nokia Windows Phone device and so it would not be in our interests to undermine their Nokia smartphone experience.

        Then:

        All together, this means your investment in Qt is a safe choice for skill competency, monetization opportunities and brand awareness amongst our millions of users.

        Yeah, right.

        If I were developer, I think I'd target Android because of the numbers, and Linux-based WebOS [wikipedia.org], because it seems cool. (Inputting the Konami code [wikipedia.org] to enter dev mode? Highly geeky.)

        • by Culture20 (968837)

          when users come to the end of the natural lifecycle of their Symbian device they will make the change to a Nokia Windows Phone device

          That's some serious delusional thinking from Nokia.

      • The problem is that symbian, while basically just plain unfit for purpose as a modern smartphone OS, can and does run as intended on hardware that would make its next-get contenders cry bitter tears very, very, slowly.

        Unless they have something else in mind, "no more symbian" = "We aren't even going to try on the low end"

        They recent symbian "flagship" phones have been pretty sad, roughly the same price as a decent android for yesterday's OS and hardware specs; but it'd be sad to see Nokia's classic lo
        • by drinkypoo (153816)

          The low end is getting higher. When I got my first cellphone it was one of those Sony/Qualcomm sliders for Sprint PCS. It could hardly do anything. [Much] later I got a Motorola Triplets phone, it ran around 200 MHz. Later I got a RAZR which is basically the same thing but twice as fast. Now for what I paid for that you can get a smartphone.

          The super low-end phones are about to go away completely because it's getting too cheap to make a better phone.

          • The super low-end phones are about to go away completely because it's getting too cheap to make a better phone.

            Ever see the margins on those low end phones? Dealers love them because of the money they make on them vs. smartphones.

            • by Culture20 (968837)

              Ever see the margins on those low end phones? Dealers love them because of the money they make on them vs. smartphones.

              Kind of like how most restaurant profits come from drinks, not the meals.

      • by Carewolf (581105)

        Yeah, getting an order of magnitude better battery life is just so old-fashioned. We should embrace the tied to the wall model of real modern mobile OS (sigh).

        • In the trade-off between functionality and battery life, users have chosen functionality for their real modern mobile phones. Nokia hasn't been able to compete in the area of functionality.

          • by Carewolf (581105)

            Which is why they are changing the top of the line. The question is who will supply the middle segment? remember, that dispite all the media hype, Symbian still sells way better than the iPhone (I think all androids combined overtook it though). It may not be better but by being cheaper and more mobile it appeals to a different segment.

      • by Xest (935314)

        For smartphones yes, but 90% of Nokia's sales aren't smartphones.

        I'm struggling to understand what their plan is now, they certainly wont be able to get Windows Phone 7 running on their low end phones, so are they scrapping this line completely?

        It's a poor short term view if that's the case, whilst the battle for the smartphone market is lucrative Nokia's dominance of the African, Chinese and Indian cellphone markets meant they were well positioned to take control of the worlds biggest emerging markets, mar

    • Off course. Never heard of a "Grab the money and run" tactic?
    • by bloodhawk (813939) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:04AM (#35636602)
      It is a gamble, but not as much as a gamble as sticking with symbian, symbian has been dead for a while, it remains to be seen whether they jumped from the titanic to an equally doomed ship though, only time will tell. Remember even if the gamble fails they can always join the Android bandwagon, phones are rapidly replaced, if they got enough from MS for this it could well be a relatively risk free venture and you can be pretty sure regardless of what the marketing are pushing there will be backup plans and work going on in the backrooms.
      • by js_sebastian (946118) on Monday March 28, 2011 @07:00AM (#35636890)

        It is a gamble, but not as much as a gamble as sticking with symbian, symbian has been dead for a while

        Symbian still has the largest installed base of any phone OS, and was just recently surpassed by android as the most sold phone OS. It may have strong in a lower-end market segment with lower margins, and it may have been declining, but saying it was dead is just US-centric uninformed drivel. Transitioning away from it with an application compatibility path provided by Qt may have been a good strategy, but by just dumping it for microsoft WP7 they are basically committing harakiri in emerging markets where they are by far the strongest phone maker.

        • Qt didn't provide a very good transition path if the goal was to get away from Symbian. Symbian was a great kernel design, but the userspace APIs were getting a bit dated. They contained a lot of tricks that let you squeeze apps into under 1MB of RAM, which just piss off developers when they are targeting phones with 64-512MB of RAM and the API's making them jump through hoops to save the odd byte on common data types. What Symbian needed was an updated UI and a rewritten set of APIs for app developers,
      • You think you can switch from developing on Symbian -> Windows Phone at the drop of a hat? Or from Windows Phone -> Android?

        It all takes time. Time which Android is using to become the defacto, open standard.

        2011 is basically going to be the year of Android *everywhere*, and after that... Frankly, too late, The Network Effect is in place.
         

    • by asdf7890 (1518587)
      Well, they weren't doing that good a job of competing in the smart-phone business before the MS buyoutdeal. The oft quoted fact that Symbian phones outnumber iPhone and Android combined is no longer the case (just) and the Symbian share is falling rapidly. The 80+% share of the smartphone market in 2008/2009 included other manufacturers (not just Nokia so that 80% should not be taken as meaning Nokia had 80% of the market) but all the others have since dropped Symbian from the new ranges, Nokia is just the
    • by williamhb (758070)

      Why Nokia? Why? Do the management like Microsoft money more than they like staying in business?

      Comparatively, MS must look pretty good - in that "very distant third place" (where I'd guess WP7 will be in 2012) is much better than "completely dead" (where Symbian and MeeGo would be in 2012). Already in 2011, I've seen mobile phone stands in shopping centres here effectively categorising their phones to the user as "Here's the iPhone, here's our Android phones, here's some Windows Phone 7 phones on businessy-sounding plans, and here's some assorted crap". Symbian and MeeGo were never going to get the

  • Seriously, I dug out my old N95 to let a friend use it for the navi. Going through the one, it is astonishing just how bad the UI really it. It is such an unintuitive OS. Why they were so slow to jump into a modern OS is beyond me. Though..I would not have gone for MS Phone. That can only end in tears.

    • by dsvilko (217134) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:32AM (#35636772)

      Am I the only one that will really miss Symbian? I am no developer but I really liked my low-end S60 smartphones. UI may not be as fancy but when it comes to functionality and performance/price ratio these were the best phones I have ever head. System-wide copy-paste, BT file transfers, WLAN tethering, true multitasking and background processes, video calls.... it had it all for ages. On-board Python interpreter with a full API access is also extremely cool feature that I believe no modern OS can match. I also had StyleTap installed and so I could run almost all of my PalmOS programs, some of which are still much better than anything that is currently available for iOS or Android. All in all, I will miss it. When I will be finally forced to switch to Android, I think I'll miss more features than I will gain by a fancy UI.

      • UI may not be as fancy but when it comes to functionality and performance/price ratio these were the best phones I have ever head.

        That's why I bought, most recently, a 5800XM. Can't say I've regretted the decision, it's a moderately powerful phone for a very modest price. I wanted GPS and 802.11b, and at the time, you simply could not get that from another manufacturer for less than double the price. The UI really is awful, though, awful awful awful. That is partly due to the fact that Nokia had to make a number of sacrifices to get the price that low: a slow processor means slow transitions between screens and even between landscape

      • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Monday March 28, 2011 @07:56AM (#35637120) Journal

        Am I the only one that will really miss Symbian?

        Nope. The UI needed an update, as did some of the developer APIs designed for really low memory environments, but the kernel (EXA2 especially) is a really beautiful design. A simple but powerful capabilities model and power management designed into the driver model from the ground up. A realtime nanokernel that could run multiple OS personalities, so you could have the hard realtime OS for the radio and the main Symbian OS microkernel running on the same core. Device driver separation, with the privileged-mode component just handling exposing the device to userspace, and a (typically, much bigger) userspace component handling allowing different apps to use it. Pervasive multithreading from the nanokernel up, so it would scale nicely to n-core machines.

      • by Shag (3737)

        Am I the only one that will really miss Symbian?

        If the year is 2006 or before, probably not.
        If it is 2007 or after, yeah.

  • by shione (666388) on Monday March 28, 2011 @05:59AM (#35636564) Journal

    why pay for a os when you could get one for free from google. Also what about the basic phone market? Not everyone wants a smartphone.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      They do not pay for it, actually Microsoft pays them to use and develop the OS.

    • by elewton (1743958)

      You may also have to pay Microsoft's protection fee when you use Android.

      • There's no 'may' to that. You must. Failure to pay Microsoft will mean costly drawn out lawsuits. So if you're a phone manufacturer, your phones had better run Windows... or else.
    • by asdf7890 (1518587)
      They are not paying MS. The deal works out that they get a large pile of MS money to develop their Window Mobile range, at least initially. Joining the Android market late would have put them in the "plucky newcomer" category competing against the established leaders in that arena like HTC, so in the Windows Mobile world they have more chance of a level playing field in that arena and more chance of a little control to nudge things in the direction they think best than they'd have with Android (ignoring the
  • by Dynamoo (527749) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:04AM (#35636600) Homepage
    There's a big, big gap between the spec of a base-level WP7 smartphone and the highest-spec Series 40 "dumbphone". Symbian is nicely filling a gap in the midrange market that Nokia don't have a replacement for. Will Nokia simply walk away from this market segment?

    I'm not convinced at all that Nokia have worked out how to deal with the midrange. Yeah, we all know that WP7 is going to be the OS for high-end smartphones, and Nokia are "looking to the next billion sales" for cheaper stuff. However, the message for everything else has been confusing and inconsistent.

    Here's one way of looking at it - Nokia: Mind the Gap [mobilegazette.com].

    • My thoughts exactly. For all the hate against WP7 (which I agree with, but it's besides the point), WP7 and Symbian have quite different target audiences, overall. While there are plenty of high end Symbians like the N8, I haven't seen any low end WP7 phones. Are Nokia really going to go all out on high end smartphones? They've been failing badly in that market as is, but they've been able to survive thanks to their mid to low range phones

      Betting their high end market on WP7 is one thing - it's fairly safe,

    • by asdf7890 (1518587)
      Is the mid-range market really big enough to be worth them investing a lot in though?

      In my experience (warning: anecdotal evidence detected) the people who "just want a phone that can call and text" won't pay the extra for a mid-range device as they don't need nor want the extra features (the current economy has put pay to there being many people who get something a bit better than they currently need just-in-case), and most people who want a smart-phone want a high-range one either because they need/want
    • Re:Mind the gap (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Compaqt (1758360) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:34AM (#35636780) Homepage

      Well, I don't know if Nokia will walk away from the market, but the market certainly might.

      Before: (Nokia to the market) Buy our somewhat-cheap Symbian phones. You can buy Qt apps, and they'll continue to work on Meego when we (finally) release it.

      Now: (Nokia to market) Buy our somewhat-cheap Symbian phones. You can buy Qt apps, and they won't work on our new, high-end phone line. And we'll make vague statements about Meego, while burying it in a few months.

      Now: (Market to Nokia). And why shouldn't I buy a cheap Chinese/Indian Android phone, buy my apps, and move up to a nice Android phone (with apps intact) later?

      • given that Nokia already sold Qt, I think their lack of commitment is obvious. Intel's head phone guy also quit recently, so I think maemo and meego are pretty much dead in the water. And I say this reluctantly having been a happy owner of nokia 770, n800; I would have had an n900 if they'd produced the variant I wanted.
        • by Dynamoo (527749)
          Ironically* the 770 was an "Internet Tablet" years before anybody else had a tablet. It's one of many cases (such as the Nokia 7710) where Nokia were way, way ahead of the game but the technology wasn't quite up to it. There's also the Nokia Communicator series which was really far ahead of the curve too.. big screens and QWERTY keyboards are all the rage these days..

          * Like rain on your wedding day

  • It looks like Nokia is ruling itself out of a number of markets including, geeks, fanbois, those without cash to burn and those who know about phones.

    Which other groups have I missed?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Well your group covers about 5% of the market, I guess they must be chasing the other 95% of the market.

      geeks and fanbois make up an extreme minority and are generally not a market you want to specifically chase for mass market products, if your product appeals to them great, if not then you really haven't lost a lot, those without cash to burn are also without cash to make a profit from.
      • by Gonoff (88518)
        I suspect people on limited budgets are a large and increasing part of the market - perhaps 20%? I guess it depends on how limited...
    • by DamonHD (794830)

      People who liked the Communicator line?

      Rgds

      Damon

  • by lennier1 (264730)

    Symbian?

    Seems like there's finally a good use for that "and nothing of value was lost" line!

  • As a long time Nokia buyer I'm sad to see, that its time to look for greener pastures. I currently own a Symbian smartphone... It sucks next to all the shiny androids and iphones and is barely better than my first smartphone, the windows mobile ipaq PDA(not buying windows again no matter how much the windows phone 7 has evolved). However, I have hard time imagining my parents ever learning to use a different device/system on their old school call only phones...
    • by lennier1 (264730)

      Been there, done that, didn't like the t-shirt.

      With one exception (Alcatel One Touch Com, which had some features even most modern smartphones lack) I've been using Nokia phones since the good old 2110 in the mid-90's. After they abandoned the Series 90 platform, the mobile TV modules and of course after the "Maemo vs. Moblin" clusterfuck I was already thoroughly disappointed by Nokia.
      But now that they've turned into a puppet company for Microsoft, adopting the worst big-name phone OS currently on the marke

  • by ccr (168366) on Monday March 28, 2011 @06:45AM (#35636834) Homepage

    TFA and the original source (press release from Forum Nokia, http://blogs.forum.nokia.com/blog/nokia-developer-news/2011/03/25/open-letter-to-developer-community [nokia.com] ) reveal that:

    Over the past weeks we have been evaluating our Symbian roadmap and now feel confident we will have a strong portfolio of new products during our transition period - i.e. 2011 and 2012.

    And further ..

    Iâ(TM)ve been asked many times how long we will support Symbian and Iâ(TM)m sure for many of you it feels we have been avoiding the question. The truth is, it is very difficult to provide a single answer. We hope to bring devices based on Windows Phone to market as quickly as possible, but Windows Phone will not have all language and all localization capabilities from day one. [...] That is why we cannot give you the date when Symbian will no longer be supported.

    Finally it is stated:

    What I can promise you is that we will not just abandon Symbian users or developers. As a very minimum, we have a legal obligation, varying in length between countries, to support users for a period of time after the last product has been sold.

    So there's nothing saying that Nokia will suddenly stop supporting Symbian in 2012. It'll just fade out gradually, and even they don't admit knowing when it will fade out completely.

    • by TheSunborn (68004)
      What story did you read?

      The one I read said "[Nokia] will create no more Symbian phones after 2012 ". The slashdot story don't say anything about stopping support for existing phones, and nothing about them stopping existing phones either.

      Even the headline "No More Symbian Phones After 2012" got it almost right, even thou you might say that they need the word "new" to clarify.
  • HEY HEY 16K, Need To Know, Thursday (Big K) — Nokia, through the Symbian Foundation, has made the code for the Symbian smartphone OS open source, putting several aging geeks in raptures of delight [newstechnica.com].

    "The Symbian OS will delight those of us who fondly remember EPOC on the Psion NetBook," said Larry Berkin, Symbian's head of global alliances. "God, that was an OS. Best PDA ever. Finest of British engineering. Sixteen whole kilobytes! You could run a truck over them. I bet an open source Symbian OS will l

  • Gee, it's very nice that Symbian sold more than iOS or Android. If it wasn't making Nokia any money, or if Nokia couldn't eke out much of a profit on the phones that had it, the fact that they sold tons of phones with it loaded is not really relevant. We don't call Microsoft a titan of the PC Games industry because every computer comes with the hugely popular Solitaire and Minesweeper, and Nokia doesn't consider Symbian a success just because a lot of phones happen to have it loaded.

  • by cheros (223479) on Monday March 28, 2011 @07:21AM (#35636952)

    Let's face it, it doesn't matter one blind bit for Fred End User which platform the phone runs. What matters is what can be done with it.

    Apple made exceptionally good use of its understanding of design to create a phone that was easy to use in many aspects (but not all). RIM understood early on that business people need calendar, email and contacts on the go and focused on that, Google is betting on people still not understanding how they pay for "free" with their privacy to push their own platform Android (cleverly using the "open" cvoncept to drag the technical people along). Nokia has, well, a toolkit but no focus, no killer app.

    Personally, I see the move towards Microsoft as beyond exceptionally bad - Nokia has sold its soul to a partner who is only interested in using it. Instead, Nokia should first develop a focus, and then gather the tools to do it. This could still be Symbian - if that really went Open Source and an effort was made to make it provably secure it could still support a recovery, provided some people start to think outside the box AND ARE ALLOWED TO PROGRESS (I know what management saturation looks like - it means you have a lot of high earners who spend their day playing politics, whereas the creative people get so bored they walk, making the company even more boring and prone to die).

    But hey, if they want to commit commercial suicide by crawling in bed with MS, so be it. It's a shame - I liked Nokia.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      Let's face it, it doesn't matter one blind bit for Fred End User which platform the phone runs. What matters is what can be done with it.

      Yes, and so far nobody has ever been able to make a phone with WinCE on it stable, and nobody has been able to make a Symbian platform sing and dance even as well as WinCE, let alone iOS or Android. OTOH, nobody has been able to make a low-memory phone work as well as Nokia. I'm not one who is in love with their UI but the phones seem much less flaky than Motorola phones like the RAZR or other BREW phones.

  • by mmcuh (1088773) on Monday March 28, 2011 @08:12AM (#35637218)
    Nokia should just get out of the "smart" phones altogether and focus on what they've always done best - cheap, sturdy, basic phones that can make calls and send text messages and have weeks of battery life.No need to find special chargers when I go to a country with strange power outlets for a week. If I drop it in a lake, I'll get a new one for 20€. I know that I'm probably in the minority, but that's the sort of phone that I want, and I'm sure that there are enough of us to sustain Nokia if they stop wasting money on developing these expensive almost-a-real-computer devices.

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