Feeds

Nokia to halve its smartphone portfolio in 2010

Sends R&D a maemo

High performance access to file storage

Handset competition used to be all about releasing hundreds of models, many just slight variations on one another.

Now, at the high end at least, it is all about cutting R&D and production costs by focusing on a smaller number of (hopefully) high impact smartphones.

If Apple can get a 3% global share with, effectively, just one phone, the big five are looking to similar efficiencies. Motorola has already slashed the number of phones it plans to develop in 2009-2010, partly by focusing almost entirely on Android at the top end; now Nokia says it will halve its smartphone portfolio next year to reduce "unnecessary differentiation" and maximize the effort behind a few key models.

The market leader already surprised some observers by saying it would add only one phone based on its Maemo Linux OS in 2010, to join the new N900. This is very typical of the new approach - the N900 is a genuine groundbreaker, and Nokia promises the 2010 launch will not be just another smartphone, but will help redefine the mobile internet device category. If it succeeds, it believes it will achieve more bang for less buck, compared to unleashing a host of Maemo products that are not clearly differentiated.

The same goes for its main smartphone platform, Symbian/Series 60. Nokia has increased the number of high end and midrange models it has launched in 2009 - to about 20 - after a damagingly fallow period in 2008, when it lost much of the huge momentum it had originally generated with the N95, which arguably defined the new smartphone segment when it appeared in 2006. Having got some of its mojo back with the N97 and the 'Tube' family, and belatedly embraced touchscreens, Nokia will now cut back again in terms of model numbers.

At its Capital Markets Day this week, Nokia also promised that 2010 would see a major overhaul of its Series 60 user experience, which - coupled with the release of the new open source upgrade of Symbian - could rejuvenate a software platform that is starting to look rather tired, and is under pressure from the more modern Android.

Copyright © 2009, Wireless Watch

Wireless Watch is published by Rethink Research, a London-based IT publishing and consulting firm. This weekly newsletter delivers in-depth analysis and market research of mobile and wireless for business. Subscription details are here.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
Skype pimps pro-level broadcast service
Playing Cat and Mouse with the media
Beat it, freetards! Dyn to shut down no-cost dynamic DNS next month
... but don't worry, charter members, you're still in 'for life'
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
Facebook splats in-app chat, whacks brats into crack yakety-yak app
Jibber-jabbering addicts turfed out just as Zuck warned
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.