One of the dream that most of the 90s kids (like me) who are not fond of Android-based smartphones is “wish Nokia had made Android based smartphone! That would have been kickass”. Isn’t it? Well, not a long ago, a news flashed in front of us carrying a banner “Nokia will be back in business soon”. Enough of dreaming and “will be back” sign as Nokia has finally struck a deal with HMD Global and FIH Mobile Limited, to produce Android-based smartphone and Tablets (and featured phones as well).
Strategic Partnership between Nokia and HMD Global and FIH Mobile Limited
In case you missed it, Nokia had firmly announced that the company will not be manufacturing the hardware anymore, but rather it would be happy to license it to others. There were rumors about Meizu and Foxconn getting onboard to leverage the legacy that Nokia as a brand followed till it was sold itself to Microsoft.
Slashing all those rumors aside, Nokia has announced a strategic partnership with HMD Global to produce Android-based smartphones and tablets. Missing Nokia’s featured phones that are still a leader in most of the markets? Well, Nokia and HMD Global combined together have struck a deal with FIH Mobile Ltd., to complete the package. What does that mean? Nokia as a complete package is about to hit the market. Brace yourself!
Five key points about the Nokia’s comeback plan
Here is what happened today:
- Nokia Technologies will grant HMD global Oy (HMD), a newly founded company based in Finland, an exclusive global license to create Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets for the next ten years
- HMD announced today that it has conditionally agreed to acquire from Microsoft the rights to use the Nokia brand on feature phones, and certain related design rights to be a sole global licensee for all types of Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets
- Microsoft’s feature phone business assets, including manufacturing, sales and distribution, would be acquired by FIH, a subsidiary of Hon Hai Precision Industries (trading as Foxconn Technology Group)
- Nokia will provide HMD with branding rights and cellular standard-essential patent licenses in return for royalty payments, but will not be making a financial investment or holding equity in HMD
- Nokia Technologies will have a hold on the development of Nokia-branded devices. These products will have to pass “mandatory brand requirements and performance provisions.”
So what’s in it for us? We will get to flaunt a device that has a legacy behind. A “Nokia Branded Smartphones and Tablets”! Feeling emotional? (I’m. While I write it). After all, the Nokia fans had to wait for almost a decade to witness this. Nokia and industry leading operating system coming together. Wow!
So here is how I work, HMD global will develop the prototype, Nokia will provide its inputs and Foxconn will mass manufacture it. HMD global will market and sell the products under the brand name Nokia.
Yes, Nokia will have a strong hold on every device that comes out. It will be involved in “exemplify consumer expectations of Nokia devices, including quality, design, and consumer-focused innovation.”
Ramzi Haidamus, president of Nokia Technologies, said:
Today marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter for the Nokia brand in an industry where Nokia remains a truly iconic name. Instead of Nokia returning to manufacturing mobile phones itself, HMD plans to produce mobile phones and tablets that can leverage and grow the value of the Nokia brand in global markets. Working with HMD and FIH will let us participate in one of the largest consumer electronics markets in the world while staying true to our licensing business model.
The end question would be, “when can we see the devices from Nokia back in the market again”? Well, Nokia can not enter the mobile phone market until the end of 2016 as per the agreement with Mircosoft. But then, as the featured phone segment will be acquired from Mircosoft in H2 2016, we might expect some devices from Nokia by this year end of early 2017.