Nokia to make Windows Phone 7 the main focus of new devices in North America

In a big gamble by the Symbian-based smartphone giant of the world, Nokia is planning on making some pretty amazing changes in their emerging US market in the near future. According to an interview with AllThingsD, Nokia's plan is to shift all interest in the US and Canada from manufacturing and selling their current lower-end devices and feature phones, to creating a market that revolves around all things Windows Phone 7 and the accessories that go with it.

It's all done in an attempt to restructure the major brand over the next several years to become a superior manufacturer of Windows Phone 7 devices, and from the words of a Nokia spokesperson, it sounds like it'll be one of the final shots the company will have at regaining some footing in the US (and later the world). "The reality is if we are not successful with Windows Phone, it doesn’t matter what we do (elsewhere)."

We've already seen some of the work that Nokia has been doing with WP7 devices in their upcoming (and yet to be announced) "Sea Ray" line, but it looks like we'll soon be hearing a lot more as Nokia is also preparing a marketing blitz to announce upcoming launches. With the largest marketing budget that the company has invested to date, they're looking to rebrand themselves as leaders of not just WP7 devices, but smartphones as a whole.

Of course, Nokia won't be ignoring where most non-smartphone users come from, and rumor has it that WP7 "Tango" is being released with Nokia's low-end smartphone consumers in mind. At ZDnet there is some well-founded speculation on the partnership between Nokia and Microsoft in making these new devices. If Nokia can win over the masses of low-end smartphone owners with a less expensive WP7 device, Microsoft wins too - as writer Mary Jo Foley puts it, "Tango is “all about Nokia” and focused on hitting the lower-price point for Windows Phones that Microsoft and Nokia execs have been promising." This makes sense too since, for the most part, the vastly un-penetrated non-smartphone market is just waiting for cheaper prices to arrive for these mobile computers.

The changes will also include moving their sales force to Sunnyvale, California; which is much closer to the Microsoft Research Campus in Mountain View than their previous locations on the East Coast of North America, but that won't be finished until early next year. For now, get ready to hear more news from Nokia's North American branches. It looks like they'll be bringing us something big to talk about in the near future.

Source: AllThingsD and ZDNet; Via: Engadget

  • Yikes, that phone is hideous.
  • Its an old device with WP interface photoshoped on
  • Current hardware family will be $200 come early next year, I fear Nokia might be trying to drive WP down price points too quickly and we will lose that security that a high level of performance can be expected across all devices.
  • Has Nokia's high end phones ever been popular in the US. So I guess they plan on low ending the US to death.
  • your totally right and im gona give you a + 1 cause some one gave you a -1 . nothing wrong with low ending the US , ALLOT of people are new to smart phones so ALLOT of them are just picking up ANDROID phones cause its the only OS with Low END NOOB Smartphone right now ( we have 4 free low end android phones at bell ) . this is gona help MS in the LONG run. attract more people to WP , then latter on they can upgrade to a better WP...the only question is: what is the LOW end WP gona do the OS?? is gona become an other android, 3 marketplace??
  • I agree, I see a lot of people with low - mid range Android devices. This is going to put MS over the hump in the long run. Now if the low end device runs WP7 like **** then that could hurt MS to death. But hey Android runs like **** on high end phone, and it's on fire right now, so who knows.
  • Good to hear! Focus and deliver, please!!
  • this is a good idea considerign Symbian DOES NOT!! sell in america . ( compare to the rest of the world any ways ) and im glad to see we mgiht get some LOW ends WP7 , we have like 4-5 low end ANDROID phones here at bell but no WP , so all the *NOOBS* are getting android ( dont evan need a data plan :S ) go nokia.. but why is the camera only 5mp!!
  • Its an old Symbian device with WP interface photoshopped on the screen, doesnt even have the buttons required by windows phone!!!
  • lol , oh
  • I hope that "low-end" talk doesn't mean MS let Nokia go below the minimum requirements to make laggy, cheap devices, like Android's "mid-range" devices.
  • Whatever goes below the system specs that are in todays phones, it's not going to be good as todays phones. I thought that too, as soon as I've seen that MS is giving privileges to Nokia about WP7. They mentioned cheap phones. And that means that lower grade specs are going in and making WP7 a disaster.
  • I think the minimum requirements set by MS will prevent any WP7 from being laggy or cheap, at least from a software standpoint. Besides, the Focus is selling for 50 bucks right now, cheaper than some of the mid-range android phones, and still far better than them.
  • I'd guess they'll leave out Mango-supported features like the gyroscope and cut corners with screen or camera quality. Still, likely to be close to the current crop of WP7 phones. Keep in mind that the next-gen high end phones are going to make current ones feel a little shabby, just like each generation of iPhone does to its predecessor.What is really interesting here is just how committed Nokia is to making a success out of WP7 phones. They have their backs up against the wall so it is risky but staying with Symbian/Meego wasn't going to fly. And going to Android would have made them just one of the pack...and that was before all the patent troubles and lawsuits. I wouldn't be surprised if device makers desert Android over the next 2-3 years. But then I wouldn't be surprised if carriers and manufacturers just go on doing the same crappy business they've been doing all along.
  • If they support only lower end devices (to bring the price point of WP7 devices down), count me out. I need a mid to high end phone for my fixes.HTC is looking better and better...
  • I'm ok with nokia trying to get in on the low end market. I really hope that's not all they plan on doing though. I would love a good nokia phone but I'm not gonna stick with a low end device. If windows phone does get more popular I can see htc and samsung coming out with some great hardware. I love nokia hardware but ill take a high end samsung/htc phone over a low end nokia phone. I don't want the result of this to make windows phone look like the "cheap" os.