What's in a name? Nokia Lumia explained.

Ever wonder how companies come up with the names of their products? With a name like "Lumia" there is generally a meaning behind it to try and build good rapport with potential consumers. As it turns out, Nokia went through a nice long process in finding the name of their first Windows Phone 7 device. When you're a worldwide leader in mobile devices, you can't just pick a word that sounds good in your own language - you need something that will stick with the people no matter where they are from.

There are certain criteria that a name must first fit in order to make it through early stages of the name-selection phase. What started off as a list of over 200 possible names for the new Nokia phone, the company efficiently whittled the list down to one, but not before comparing each name to over 300,000 other tech brands and consulting with 84 different language experts. 

The name Lumia had some of its own difficulties to triumph over. While in many Spanish-speaking countries the people think of it as meaning "light", there are some old-timers who might remember that the word was once a slang-term for "prostitute". After taking surveys and doing research, Nokia found that roughly 60% of Spanish-speakers thought the name "Lumia" was a positive one for a piece of mobile technology, thus easing worries that there could be a negative vibe towards the brand over time.

In other countries Lumia has a different meaning; in Finland it means "snow", which is handy since the device is being released this winter. All fine words for a brand that Nokia wants people to talk about. Of course, the ultimate catch is in the way the word sounds - Lumia is distinctly similar to the name "Nokia", and repition is always a great thing to have when you want a brand name to stick. Nokia is not new to researching a name before putting it on shelves - "Asha", a brand for devices sold in emerging markets, means "hope" in Hindi (a language of India).

So there you have it. Whether Lumia means "snow", "light", "hope" or maybe something else in another language, Nokia has definitely done their homework before picking this name. Let's just hope they've done homework in other areas, too, and that this brand new device is the success that Nokia and WP7 need to get some attention in this very competitive mobile world.

Source: Mon Windows Phone

  • I can see this is going to end up with some long winded, drunk take name no one can agree on like the Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch. lol.
  • @Tim Stiffler-Deans. Lumia doesnt mean Hope in Hindi.. its their other phone "Asha" that was released at nokia world which means Hope..
  • Yes, you are correct. Horrible mix-up on my part. I even discussed that with someone and still wrote it incorrectly. Thanks for reminding me to make the fix.
  • As part of Microsoft's partnership with Nokia, they should agree that Nokia gets exclusive rights to name all Microsoft products.Gone would be the days of Microsoft Office 2010 Professional Plus Minus Two Times Four N-Edition x64.
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  • Asha... Hope. Using mother tongue. It feels closer and at home.On the other hand, Lumia is dynamic in meaning. It is fresh.I like marketing and ads. A lot of them are very intelligent and intellectually funny.
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  • Well, yeah, i speak spanish, and actually in all romance languages "Lumia" comes from the dead language LATIN, it is a derivation from "lumen"  that means "Light", "lumia" must mean "with light"