Nokia, end of an era
The announcement of Microsoft's Lumia 535 is the final nail in the coffin for Nokia.
Back in September last year, Microsoft paid just 5.44 billion Euro for Nokia’s Devices and Services business; this single transaction was the beginning of the end for the once undisputed global leader mobile phone maker.
This relatively small sum of money would have seemed an unconceivable offer to buy Nokia just a few years ago, when their mobile phones were selling alot more than any other company out there. As recent as 2013, Nokia employed 90,000 people across 120 countries, conducted sales in more than 150 countries and reported annual revenues of around €12.7 billion.
There was a time when if you didn’t have a Nokia, there was something wrong with you, provoking comments like, ‘OMG like, what if the battery goes flat in your non-Nokia phone?’, ‘How will you charge it if you are not at home?’, etc.
At this point in time, every house, pub,hotel and betting shop had at least half dozen Nokia chargers to hand with an even mix of skinny pin and fat pin so a flat Nokia battery was no excuse for not calling someone back!
Released in 2003, the Nokia 1100 sold an unbeliveable 200 million units world wide and it is still the biggest selling phone model in history,no other phone has come close since and probably never will.
The Nokia 1100 was the best selling mobile in history
Nokia were the best phones in the world and they were the best for a reason. They were the 1st to feaure the latest and greatest functions on their handsets, features that we all now expect as standard in today’s smart phones. Features like a camera, FM radio,bluetooth,MP3 player,video capture and internet have been in their phones for well over a decade now.
The 3210 was the 1st to feature predictive text and Xpress covers that gave you the ability to change the look of your phone and it also had Snake. Forget Angry Birds, this was the most addictive game EVER!!
The popular game snake made its debut on the Nokia 3210
The 3310 was the first for long SMS , 3 X 160 character messages meant an end to using short txt n 4 me dat was Gr8! It also had a calculator, stop watch and of course ,Snake 2! This sold over 130 million units.
The Nokia 3310 was an icon of the early 2000s
The 6210,6310 and 6310i were the quintessential business range of phones and anyone who was anyone had one. You can still see the odd diehard walking around today using them,and they won’t give them up.These had features like tri band, IR port and even Bluetooth made an apperance in the 6310i. Pair this up with a Bluetooth headset and you belonged on Wall Street!
The Nokia 6310i, tall, robust and bluetooth fitted, the perfect business phone in 2002
When the 6230 was released in 2003 it was the 1st compact phones that had a VGA camera, MP3 player ,FM radio and it was the first non-smartphone with an expandable memory card slot.
Then came the Symbian phones, this is when they really came into their own with maket leading features and style.
The Nokia C3-01, an example of the Symbian series
The E range of business phones really took a bite of other business phone makers. The E range had push email and exchange active sync support ,the E70 range also had a full querty keyboard.
The N95 was the 1st with a 5MP camera and A-gps that gave pin point map location support with a whole range of other features.
The N97 was a personal favourite of mine with a full touch screen , a slide out keyboard and a massive 32GB of internal memory.This amount of memory is still big by todays standard and the N97 was released 5 and half years ago.
Fastforward now to 2011 where Nokia and Microsoft joined forces and started to produce the Lumia range of windows 7 smart phones. The Symbian platform was starting to loose its appeal of other smart phone makers so they needed a fresh look and os for their phones. This merger was not as successful as they hoped and there was very little they could do to catch up with their competitors.
The Nokia Lumia 800 was the first Nokia device to run on the Windows Phone system
The downfall of Nokia could be blamed on a few contributing factors. I believe the main reason was that they were too slow to react to the new range of smart phones that were being released by other large tech firms in the late naughties. These new range of full touch screen smart phones offered the same features that Nokia had on their phones for years, these new phones just did it better !
Sales of Nokia phones started to slow down while their competitors’ sales went through the roof; there was simply no time for Nokia to catch up.
In my opinion, Nokia will always be the grandparents of the mobile phone and no matter how advanced modern smart phones may become, they all owe their existance to a Finnish Rubber company who started business 150 years ago.
Paul Cooney – Business Development Manager, Totterdells