Nokia has revealed its return to the smartphone business. The renowned Finnish phone maker has started listing some mobile devices for sale on its site, the first time that Nokia-branded phones have been obtainable for purchase from the firm as it was sold to Microsoft back in 2014.
That’s not everything, however; as Nokia also established that it is equally working on new phones running on Google’s Android software. Presently, only a small number of core smartphones are listed which includes the Nokia 105, Nokia 216 and Nokia 230 versions.
Nevertheless, the company says that this is set for expansion, noting that, ‘we’re actively working on Nokia smartphones running on Google’s Android software and creating a sign-up list for customers requiring knowing more.
The firm had said earlier back in May that it would be working on Android devices, making a departure from its prior reliance on Microsoft’s Windows Phone software.
The launch is the certified start of a newly licensed deal between Nokia and HMD Global, a new Finnish corporation. HMD Global has signed a 10-year deal to manufacture and sell Nokia gadgets, which will be made by Foxconn, the iPhone maker.
Nokia has not launched a smartphone since they launched the Lumia 650 in February 2016 in alliance with Microsoft. Rumor of an impending return to the smartphone business for Nokia first emerged early this year after HMD Global emerged. Quite a lot of devices were projected to launch over the course of the next few months, with the first one rumored to be titled the D1C, to be launched before Christmas. The D1C is rumored to come with the latest Android Operating System, Android Nougat, instead of the Windows Phone software seen on modern Nokia Lumia devices. The phone will fit soundly into the mid-range sector, having a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 octa-core processor operating at 1.4 GHz and 3GB of RAM.
Further reports have postulated that 2017 could be an immense year for Nokia in various ways. A slide leaked from an internal Nokia meeting claimed that the Nokia’s return to smartphones will be in 2017 (most likely at Mobile World Congress in February).
In addition to coming next year from Nokia is expanding its virtual reality products, which could mean the firm is manufacturing a follow-up to the first generation of its Ovo camera, which was premiered at Mobile World Congress this year.
There will as well be the initiation of a ‘Digital Health’ product, most possibly a wearable device, and expansion in patents for its mobile and smart cars.
Nokia CEO, Rajeev Suri, will be addressing a keynote at MWC 2017, along with chief executives of leading carrier networks and developers of app and service. In the meantime, CEO of Microsoft’s Asia-Pacific branch, James Rutherfoord, has gone on the record to say that HMD Global (the company which has obtained the rights to sell Nokia phones and is linking up with Nokia itself) will launch multiple devices this year and next.
Word emerged on the 2nd of December that Google is “closely” linked with Nokia’s latest Android phones. The information comes from an article in Reuters, which was initially published featuring a comment about a strong partnership involving Nokia and Google for manufacturing the new hardware, though, as Android Authority reports. The article has been edited since and the quotation deleted for unknown reasons.
The original report by AA is as follows:
“CEO of HMD Global, Arto Nummela has informed Reuters that their first foray into the Android smartphone market has been done in a close enterprise with Google.”
“The facts about that company are not made public, but it would be simple to guess the type of advice Google would give a new player in the Android space, particularly one that casts a shadow as long as Nokia casts. For example, if we see a “Moto-esque” “stock Android+” on the incoming Nokia, with a small number of custom tweaks on top, I would not be surprised at all.”
Reports going around as at November 24 have exposed a set of specs for a supposed Nokia flagship scheduled to launch in 2017. The details were reported on the social network, Chinese Weibo which points to a QHD display, and perhaps two variants at this resolution with 5.5in and 5.2in displays, Carl Zeiss camera optics (as per older Nokia models), waterproofing on a metal body shell, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor. The choice of processor is a bit out of place bearing in mind Snapdragon 835, and 830-based opponents will be giving it a hard time in the first and second quarter of 2017.
As at November 21, Nokia itself has released details attesting to its plans to launch new smartphone devices in 2017. Nokia presented the idea to investors at a Capital Markets Day event, and a PDF file can now be found on the firm’s webpage including the slides for the presentation. There is a roadmap amongst the slides for 2016-2018. For 2016, we can see Nokia’s latest purchase of health tech firm Withings, “brand & patent licenses” under HMD, license accord growth with Samsung, and the company’s OZO VR Camera.
For 2017, Nokia draw up plans for “extended VR leadership,” which could be interpreted in quite some ways, but is there hope for a VR headset? Branding of “Digital Health” is equally mentioned, most likely capitalizing on the purchase of Withings; it’s feasible we could see current health and fitness wearables from Nokia. There is equally further talk of “patent licensing development in automotive, mobile and consumer electronics,” which all sounds quite promising.