It’s as official as it’s going to get
Back in June Nokia’s current CEO laid out their plans to return to the smartphone market, and today Nokia sent an official press release outlining their plans for their triumphant return. For starters, the company is adamant that they won’t be doing any kind of manufacturing work for phones, because they’ve already liquidated their manufacturing and distribution capabilities as part of their with Microsoft.
Instead, the company will be licensing their brand through manufacturing partners like Foxconn, as evidenced by the Nokia N1 tablet. This model allows Nokia to bring their design and name recognition to the fore without taking a huge risk when it comes to actually manufacturing the phones themselves. Unfortunately because of their deal with Microsoft, the soonest we’ll be seeing Nokia phones hitting the market again will be next year, hopefully now with Android on board.
Here’s the official word from Nokia themselves:
The Nokia that exists today remains focused on the connected world, through mobile network infrastructure, location & mapping services, and technology development & licensing. We also aim to continue bringing our iconic design capabilities and technology innovation to the mobile space, and in the form of amazing products people can someday hold in their hands. However, we’ll do it in a completely different way from before.
The right path back to mobile phones for Nokia is through a brand-licensing model. That means identifying a partner that can be responsible for all of the manufacturing, sales, marketing and customer support for a product.
If and when we find a world-class partner who can take on those responsibilities, we would work closely with them to guide the design and technology differentiation, as we did with the Nokia N1 Android tablet. That’s the only way the bar would be met for a mobile device we’d be proud to have bear the Nokia brand, and that people will love to buy.