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Nokia EVP's blog response to closing of Symbian-Guru.com (nokia.com)
17 points by pavlov on July 2, 2010 | hide | past | web | favorite | 12 comments

Wow. That's the biggest load of empty corporate-speak I've read in a long time. If I didn't already believe Nokia is doomed, this would have convinced me.

I was just going to comment on that very same thing. The guy is only a day into the job, so what does he know, but didn't offer anything that would lead one to conclude they Nokia is changing anything. He didn't address the problems brought up by symbian-guru at all.

I think the headline is misleading - is sais nowhere in the article that this is a response to symbian-guru

He mentions the well-known defection halfway through the article.

Exactly! "I am committed, etc etc." It's funny how familiar these sound (it would be an interesting exercise to collect all such MBA-ese statements from execs and search for patterns).

If Nokia's only big card is their partnership with Intel on MeeGo they are indeed doomed. Intel is hedging its bets (Android set to boxes and the like) and it doesn't care.

"Over the coming months, we’ll be advancing current projects and working to simplify the way we work in order to deliver products and services faster, and with a laser focus on quality."

That sentence is particularly vacuous. Who do they think they are fooling with crap like that?

Here's what I said back to him:

Thanks for this post! I live in the US, and for a long time bought Nokia phones, frequently paying for them to be imported to the US. I traveled around the world for work for years, and the last phone I owned from Nokia was the E90.

The E90 had some great, great hardware. It was the swiss army knife of radio devices. It was years ahead of its competitors.

AND, the software was horrible. Truly terrible; so bad, that I frequently traveled with an iphone as well as a winmo device in case I needed to do something other than the primary use-case for the E90: rock-solid messaging all over the world. When I say horrible, I mean that it was clunky, poorly designed, and just a total pain-in-the ass to use, so much so, that it cut a lot of my enjoyment. This can’t continue, especially at this point in the global market for smartphones.

Ovi was totally non-competitive, the last time I looked at it. It’s currently an also-ran in a world with one awesome app store, and one okay one. On top of that, mobile developers have become used to a great development environment with Xcode. At the same time, your average apple app-store app kicks ass all over a third party Nokia application, in terms of features, coolness, usability and price. This is not a ‘come back swinging’ situation as much as it is a ‘total rethink’ situation in my opinion.

Where I’m going with all this is somewhat simple: the software question is significant for you guys: interface, app environment, customer experience, the whole nine yards. I have seen nothing from Nokia in the last five years that makes me think you’ve got a handle on this. The current best mobile UI teams in the world are:

1) Apple 2) HTC 3) Palm (except, palm’s guy just went to ..) 4) Google

I don’t have solutions for you, because I don’t know what it’s like inside Nokia right now. Do they feel that Rome is burning? Are they fiddling?

That said, if I were VP, I would personally put in place a small skunkworks team developing some rapid cycle premium Android devices to test the waters. If you wanted you could overlay the Ovi store on top of the Android Market in an effort to try and control the app supply chain better.

I would be stunned if Meego ever surpassed Android; the momentum is far too great right now. And, your job I would guess, is to ensure dominance, regardless of how many eggs you break while making the omelet.



On top of that, mobile developers have become used to a great development environment with Xcode.

Have you tried Nokia's new Qt Creator? I think it's on par with Xcode as a mobile development IDE.


So Nseries is not dumping Symbian after all. That's sad. I really think that Nokia has still a fighting chance, but it really needs to focus. It has now, what, 5 operating systems (s40, s60v3, s60v5, s^3, maemo) in production and at least 2 more coming (s^4, meego). And I don't have a clue how many models Nokia has introduced last year or two, but the number is seriously too large. One of their larger competitors, Apple, has one current model at a time. And its a hit.

But what is consistently overlooked is that Symbian still accounts for more than two-fifths of the global smartphone market.

This is the kind of quote that comes up again and again from companies trying to defend something they are losing in. Signals to me more than anything else in that post that the mindset isn't great.

So his way of demonstrating that: "I am committed, perhaps even obsessed, with getting Nokia back to being number one in high-end devices" is basically to "stay the course"? This read to me like "we need to focus on quality, but other than that, no changes necessary."

Wow. Nokia actually responded to Symbian Guru's assault! Nice. Nokia Conversation blog always manages to surprise me with its candor and fresh attitude (e.g. their response to N8 leak and more recently iPhone 4 signal issues). Now, only if their phones were as fresh.

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