I’ve been pretty critical about Nokia’s software over the past few years. In my opinion their last decent smartphone was the N95 an since then they did not release anything decent on the market – mostly because of their slowness to move to a touch-based HMI and the 20th century look of the Symbian UI.Likewise, Windows mobile has been causing pain to their users for too long a time. Never found anyone happy with their Windows Mobile 6 phones… While Windows Phone 7 may be engaging, Microsoft is still missing an iconic phone to actually mark the minds, just as the Nexus or Droids are for Android.
On top of that Microsoft maps is widely inferior to Nokia’s Navteq, and we know that one of the few features that kept Nokia phones alive is the Maps application.
This deal comes up as expected for some time now since Elop joined Nokia, and is leveraging on all the strong assets of each company to build what could be incredibly strong synergies. Nokia is loosing a lot though, since they basically publicly admit they failed at innovating on the software side, but they will gain the ability to build what can become the Windows Phone’s flagship device thus reinforcing the brand. On top of that this will enable Nokia to enter the North American market which they failed until now.
I imagine how the engineers at Nokia must feel about this deal – yet it’s probably the best thing that happened to Nokia over the past 5 years.
The big looser here is Blackberry since their OS is now the most old-fashioned of the pack…