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With Android and forked Android smartphones as the industry standard Nokia relegated to a niche market status while Apple should radically alter its previous premium strategy for long term

Here is the chart reflecting the performance of the market-leading mobile phones upto Q2’13:

From this the most visible things are:

  • Android and Android-forked (Xiaomi etc.) smartphones are the undisputed industry standards to dominate the market in years to come
  • Both the Symbian to Windows Phone and S40 to Asha Full Touch smartphone platform transition strategies from Nokia could survive the continued Android onslaught but only in a niche market status
  • There is no room for Apple’s further growth, and both the platform and the company could face a gradual decline in the smartphone market

My other observations about the state of the smartphone market after Q2’13 were already presented in the following posts:

In essence we came to a point when the superphone market came down in price to as low as $110 and up, while the entry-level segment of good quality came down to a $65+ price level. Also the smartphone market became saturated in all segments which brings an end to Samsung’s ability to base its premium profitability ambitions on smartphones alone (almost), as it was reflected in 20 years of Samsung “New Management” as manifested by the latest, June 20th GALAXY & ATIV innovations [‘Experiencing the Cloud’, July 2-26, 2013]:

… innovations in the broadest sense of the world: technology, hardware and software engineering and design, marketing in general and branding in particular etc.

Updates: Q2 record-high operating profit + smartphone worries deepen + overall business situation + nonproportionally high capex of the semiconductor business +  the #2 capex beneficiary, the Display Panel Segment

These observations also led to much greater conclusions about the upcoming changes:

Below I will assess the ‘Nokia Q2’13 market situation and changes’ as well as include ‘Gartner’s own assessment of the Q2’13 overall market situation and the changes’ to complete the picture.


Nokia Q2’13 market situation and changes:

Looking at the progress of Nokia Symbian to Windows Phone transformation Q2’13 was a straight continuation of the trends noted for Q1’13 in Nokia: Continued moderate progress with Lumia, urgent Asha Touch refresh and new innovations to come against the onslaught of unbranded Android and forked Android players in China and India [‘Experiencing the Cloud’, April 18, 2013] as you could also well observe from the chart included here as well:

Nokia was extensively discussing its Windows Phone transition in Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q2 2013 and January-June 2013 [press release, July 18, 2013]:

    • Lumia Q2 volumes increased 32% quarter-on-quarter to 7.4 million units, reflecting strong demand from customers for a broadened Lumia product range.
    • Commenting on the second quarter results, Stephen Elop, Nokia CEO, said: “ … In our Smart Devices business unit, we continue to focus on delivering meaningful differentiation to consumers around the world. We are very proud of the recent creations by our Lumia team, from the Lumia 520 – our most affordable Windows Phone 8 product which has enjoyed a strong start in markets like China, France, India, Thailand, the UK, the US and Vietnam – to the Lumia 1020, our star imaging product which we unveiled to the world last week. Overall, Lumia volumes grew to 7.4 million in the second quarter, the highest for any quarter so far and showing increasing momentum for the ecosystem. During the third quarter, we expect that our new Lumia products will drive a significant part of our Smart Devices revenue.”
    • In the third quarter 2013, supported by the wider availability of recently announced Lumia products as well as recently announced Mobile Phones products, Nokia expects higher Devices & Services net sales, compared to the second quarter 2013.
    • The year-on-year decline in our Smart Devices volumes in the second quarter 2013 continued to be driven by the strong momentum of competing smartphone platforms and our portfolio transition from Symbian products to Lumia products. The decline was primarily due to lower Symbian volumes, partially offset by higher Lumia volumes. Our Symbian volumes decreased from 6 million units in the second quarter 2012 to approximately zero in the second quarter 2013. Our Lumia volumes increased from 4.0 million in the second quarter 2012 to 7.4 million in the second quarter 2013.
    • On a sequential basis, the increase in our Smart Devices volumes in the second quarter 2013 was due to higher Lumia volumes, as we started shipping the Lumia 520 and 720 in significant volumes. In the second quarter 2013, the vast majority of Smart Devices volumes were from Windows Phone 8-based Lumia products.
    • The year-on-year increase in our Smart Devices ASP in the second quarter 2013 was primarily due to a positive mix shift towards sales of our Lumia products which carry a higher ASP than our Symbian products, partially offset by our pricing actions. Sequentially, the decrease in our Smart Devices ASP in the second quarter 2013 was primarily due to a negative mix shift towards sales of our lower priced Windows Phone 8-based Lumia products as well as our pricing actions.
    • Nokia announced and started shipments in select markets of the Nokia Lumia 925, a new interpretation of its award-winning flagship, the Nokia Lumia 920. The Nokia Lumia 925 introduces metal for the first time to the Nokia Lumia range and includes the most advanced lens technology and next-generation imaging software to capture clearer and sharper pictures and video even in low light conditions. The Nokia Lumia 925 offers a variety of exclusive services such as Nokia Music for unlimited streaming of free playlists, integrated HERE services, and the option to add wireless charging with a snap-on wireless charging cover.
    • Nokia announced the Nokia Lumia 928 smartphone, exclusive to Verizon Wireless. With a 8.7MP camera and Nokia’s PureView imaging innovation, the Nokia Lumia 928 delivers superior imaging and video performance that enables people to capture bright, blur free photos and videos, even in low light conditions. The sleek and stylish smartphone comes with the latest high-end Nokia Lumia experiences, including Nokia Music, HERE services, and built-in wireless charging.
    • Nokia started shipping in volumes the Nokia Lumia 520, its most affordable Windows Phone 8 smartphone, delivering experiences normally found only in high-end smartphones, such as the same digital camera lenses found on the Nokia Lumia 920, Nokia Music for free music out of the box and even offline, and HERE services.
    • Nokia’s Lumia range of smartphones continued to attract businesses, including Miele & Cie. KG, a global leader in domestic appliances and commercial machinery, which has chosen the Nokia Lumia range as the smartphone of choice for its global employees.
    • The Windows Phone Store continued to strengthen in terms of the quantity and quality of applications. The Windows Phone Store today offers more than 165 000 applications and games.

The Q2’13-related improvements mentioned above and influencing the below chart were even more extensively discussed in my earlier posts:

while the Q3’13-related actions of improvements in these posts:

Now look again at the performance chart for the reflections:

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From the further decline of Asha Full Touch you could see that the Temporary Nokia setback in India [‘Experiencing the Cloud’, April 28, 2013] continued into the Q2’13 as well as the result of entry-level local brand Android smartphones being in heavy price competition with Nokia Asha Full Touch during Q2 while having superior hardware specifications. Even Samsung’s REX 70 competed in price with Asha Full Touch.

Nokia was talking in his Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q2 2013 and January-June 2013 [press release, July 18, 2013] only about the following future-oriented actions that were introduced in Q2 in order to remedy this situation:

  • In Devices & Services, our Mobile Phones business unit started to demonstrate some signs of recovery in the latter part of the second quarter following a difficult start to the year. Also, towards the end of the second quarter, we started to ship the Asha 501, which brings a new design and user experience to the highly competitive sub-100 USD market. While we are very encouraged by the consumer response to our innovations in this price category, our Mobile Phones business unit is planning to take actions to focus its product offering and improve product competitiveness.
  • On a year-on-year basis, our Mobile Phones volumes in the second quarter 2013 were negatively affected by competitive industry dynamics, including intense smartphone competition at increasingly lower price points and intense competition at the low end of our product portfolio. Compared to the second quarter 2012, our Mobile Phones volumes declined across our portfolio, most notably for our non-full-touch devices that we sell to our customers for above EUR 30, partially offset by higher sales volumes of Asha full-touch smartphones.
  • Nokia started production at its new manufacturing facility in Hanoi, Vietnam. The new site has been established to produce our most affordable Asha smartphones and feature phones.
  • Nokia announced and started shipments of the Nokia Asha 501, the first of a new generation of smartphones to run on the new Asha platform. Retailing at a suggested price of USD 99, the Nokia Asha 501 offers users affordable smartphone design with bold color, a high-quality build and an innovative user interface. The new Asha platform also allows developers who write applications for the Nokia Asha 501 to reach all smartphones based on the new Asha platform without having to re-write code.

These things were already extensively discussed in my earlier posts:


And here is how Gartner was assessing the Q2’13 overall market situation and the changes:

Gartner Says Smartphone Sales Grew 46.5 Percent in Second Quarter of 2013 and Exceeded Feature Phone Sales for First Time [press release, Aug 14, 2013]

  • Worldwide Mobile Phone Sales Grew 3.6 Percent in Second Quarter of 2013
  • Microsoft Has Become the No. 3 Smartphone OS Overtaking BlackBerry

Worldwide mobile phone sales to end users totaled 435 million units in the second quarter of 2013, an increase of 3.6 percent from the same period last year, according to Gartner, Inc. Worldwide smartphone sales to end users reached 225 million units, up 46.5 percent from the second quarter of 2012. Sales of feature phones to end users totaled 210 million units and declined 21 percent year-over-year. 

“Smartphones accounted for 51.8 percent of mobile phone sales in the second quarter of 2013, resulting in smartphone sales surpassing feature phone sales for the first time,” said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner. Asia/Pacific, Latin America and Eastern Europe exhibited the highest smartphone growth rates of 74.1 percent, 55.7 percent and 31.6 percent respectively, as smartphone sales grew in all regions.

Samsung maintained the No. 1 position in the global smartphone market, as its share of smartphone sales reached 31.7 percent, up from 29.7 percent in the second quarter of 2012 (see Table 1). Apple’s smartphone sales reached 32 million units in the second quarter of 2013, up 10.2 percent from a year ago. 

Table 1

Worldwide Smartphone Sales to End Users by Vendor in 2Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Company

2Q13 Units

2Q13 Market Share (%)

2Q12 Units

2Q12 Market Share (%)

Samsung

71,380.9

31.7

45,603.8

29.7

Apple

31,899.7

14.2

28,935.0

18.8

LG Electronics

11,473.0

5.1

5,827.8

3.8

Lenovo

10,671.4

4.7

4,370.9

2.8

ZTE

9,687.6

4.3

6,331.4

4.1

Others

90,213.6

40.0

62,704.0

40.8

Total

225,326.2

100.0

153,772.9

100.0

Source: Gartner (August 2013)

In the smartphone operating system (OS) market (see Table 2), Microsoft took over BlackBerry for the first time, taking the No. 3 spot with 3.3 percent market share in the second quarter of 2013. “While Microsoft has managed to increase share and volume in the quarter, Microsoft should continue to focus on growing interest from app developers to help grow its appeal among users,” said Mr. Gupta. Android continued to increase its lead, garnering 79 percent of the market in the second quarter. 

Table 2

Worldwide Smartphone Sales to End Users by Operating System in 2Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Operating System

2Q13 Units

2Q13 Market Share (%)

2Q12  Units

2Q12 Market Share (%)

Android

177,898.2

79.0

98,664.0

64.2

iOS

31,899.7

14.2

28,935.0

18.8

Microsoft

7,407.6

3.3

4,039.1

2.6

BlackBerry

6,180.0

2.7

7,991.2

5.2

Bada

838.2

0.4

4,208.8

2.7

Symbian

630.8

0.3

9,071.5

5.9

Others

471.7

0.2

863.3

0.6

Total

225,326.2

100.0

153,772.9

100.0

Source: Gartner (August 2013)

Mobile Phone Vendor Perspective

Samsung: Samsung remained in the No. 1 position in the overall mobile phone market, with sales to end users growing 19 percent in the second quarter of 2013 (see Table 3). “We see demand in the premium smartphone market come mainly from the lower end of this segment in the $400-and-below ASP mark. It will be critical for Samsung to step up its game in the mid-tier and also be more aggressive in emerging markets. Innovation cannot be limited to the high end,” said Mr. Gupta. 

Nokia: Slowing demand of feature phone sales across many markets worldwide, and fierce competition in the smartphone segment, affected Nokia’s mobile phone sales in the second quarter of 2013. Nokia’s mobile phone sales totaled 61 million units, down from 83 million units a year ago. Nokia’s Lumia sales grew 112.7 percent in the second quarter of 2013 thanks to its expanded Lumia portfolio, which now include Lumia 520 and Lumia 720. “With the recent announcement of the Lumia 1020, Nokia has built a wide portfolio of devices at multiple price points, which should boost Lumia sales in the second half of 2013,” said Mr. Gupta. “However, Nokia is facing tough competition from Android devices, especially from regional and Chinese manufacturers which are more aggressive in terms of price points.” 

Apple: While sales continued to grow, the company faced a significant drop in the ASP of its smartphones. Despite the iPhone 5 being the most popular model, its ASP declined to the lowest figure registered by Apple since the iPhone’s launch in 2007. The ASP reduction is due to strong sales of the iPhone 4, which is sold at a strongly discounted price. “While Apple’s ASP demonstrates the need for a new flagship model, it is risky for Apple to introduce a new lower-priced model too,” said Mr. Gupta. “Although the possible new lower-priced device may be priced similarly to the iPhone 4 at $300 to $400, the potential for cannibalization will be much greater than what is seen today with the iPhone 4. Despite being seen as the less expensive sibling of the flagship product, it would represent a new device with the hype of the marketing associated with it.” 

Lenovo: Lenovo’s mobile phone sales grew 60.6 percent to reach 11 million units in the second quarter of 2013. Lenovo’s quarter performance was bolstered by smartphone sales. Its smartphone sales grew 144 percent year-over-year and helped it rise to the No. 4 spot in the worldwide smartphone market for the first time. Lenovo continues to rely heavily on its home market in China, which represents more than 95 percent of its sales. It remains challenging for Lenovo to expand outside China as it has to strengthen its direct channel as well as its relationships with communications service providers. 

Table 3

Worldwide Mobile Phone Sales to End Users by Vendor in 2Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Company

2Q13 Units

2Q13 Market Share (%)

2Q12 Units

2Q12 Market Share (%)

Samsung

107,526.0

24.7

90,432.1

21.5

Nokia

60,953.7

14.0

83,420.1

19.9

Apple

31,899.7

7.3

28,935.0

6.9

LG Electronics

17,016.4

3.9

14,345.4

3.4

ZTE

15,280.7

3.5

17,198.2

4.1

Huawei

11,275.1

2.6

10,894.2

2.6

Lenovo

10,954.8

2.5

6,821.7

1.6

TCL Communi-cation [Alcatel]

10,134.3

2.3

9,355.7

2.2

Sony Mobile Communications

9,504.7

2.2

7,346.8

1.7

Yulong [Coolpad]

7,911.5

1.8

4,016.2

1.0

Others

152,701.5

35.1

147,354.60

35.1

Total

435,158.4

100.0

420,120.0

100.0

Source: Gartner (August 2013)

“With second quarter of 2013 sales broadly on track, we see little need to adjust our expectations for worldwide mobile phone sales forecast to total 1.82 billion units this year. Flagship devices brought to market in time for the holidays, and the continued price reduction of smartphones will drive consumer adoption in the second half of the year,” said Mr. Gupta. 

Additional information is in the Gartner report “Market Share Analysis: Mobile Phones, Worldwide, 2Q13.” The report is available on Gartner’s website at http://www.gartner.com/document/2573119.

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Nokia: end of the decline?

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Nokia exceeds previous Q4 2012 outlook for Devices & Services and Nokia Siemens Networks [Nokia press release, Jan 10, 2012]

Nokia provides preliminary financial information for Q4 2012 and preliminary outlook for Q1 2013

Nokia Corporation
Stock exchange release
January 10, 2013 at 15:00 (CET+1)

Espoo, Finland – Nokia today provided preliminary information on certain aspects of its fourth quarter 2012 financial performance and also provided preliminary information on its outlook for the first quarter 2013.

Nokia now estimates that Devices & Services has exceeded expectations and achieved underlying profitability in the fourth quarter 2012.
Mobile Phones business unit and Lumia portfolio delivered better than expected results; and
– Operating expenses were lower than expected.
– Devices & Services non-IFRS operating margin for the fourth quarter 2012 now expected to be between break even and positive 2 percent.

Seasonality and competitive environment are expected to have a negative impact on the first quarter 2013 underlying profitability for Devices & Services, compared to the fourth quarter 2012.

Nokia also estimates that Nokia Siemens Networks has exceeded expectations for the fourth quarter 2012, delivering record underlying profits and a third consecutive quarter of underlying profitability.
– Strong performance in higher margin product categories and geographic regions; and
– Better than expected cost management.
Nokia Siemens Networks non-IFRS operating margin for the fourth quarter 2012 now expected to be between 13 and 15 percent.

Seasonality is expected to have a negative impact on the first quarter 2013 underlying profitability for Nokia Siemens Networks, compared to the fourth quarter 2012.

Commenting on the preliminary Q4 financial information, Stephen Elop, Nokia CEO, said:
“We are pleased that Q4 2012 was a solid quarter where we exceeded expectations and delivered underlying profitability in Devices & Services and record underlying profitability in Nokia Siemens Networks. We focused on our priorities and as a result we sold a total of 14 million Asha smartphones and Lumia smartphones while managing our costs efficiently, and Nokia Siemens Networks delivered yet another very good quarter.”

Preliminary financial information for the fourth quarter 2012:

Nokia currently estimates that Devices & Services net sales in the fourth quarter 2012 were approximately EUR 3.9 billion, with total device volumes of 86.3 million units.
Mobile Phones net sales of approximately EUR 2.5 billion, with total volumes of 79.6 million units of which 9.3 million units were Asha full touch smartphones.
Smart Devices net sales of approximately EUR 1.2 billion, with total volumes of 6.6 million units of which 4.4 million units were Nokia Lumia smartphones.
Total smartphone volumes of 15.9 million units composed of 9.3 million Asha full touch smartphones, 4.4 million Lumia smartphones and 2.2 million Symbian smartphones.
– Devices & Services Other net sales of approximately EUR 0.2 billion, including a positive impact from non-recurring IPR income of approximately EUR 50 million.

Nokia currently estimates that Devices & Services non-IFRS operating margin for the fourth quarter 2012 was between break even and positive 2 percent, which compares to the previous outlook of approximately negative 6 percent, plus or minus four percentage points. Devices & Services non-IFRS operating margin includes a positive impact from non-recurring IPR income of approximately EUR 50 million.

During the fourth quarter 2012, multiple factors positively affected Nokia’s Devices & Services businesses to a greater extent than previously expected. Preliminary information indicates that the main factors include:
– Within the Devices & Services business, better than expected financial performance in the Mobile Phones business unit and Lumia smartphones. In addition, Devices & Services recognized non-recurring IPR income of approximately EUR 50 million; and
Lower than expected Devices & Services’ operating expenses, partially due to greater than expected cost reductions under the restructuring program.

Nokia currently estimates that Location & Commerce net sales in the fourth quarter 2012 were approximately EUR 0.3 billion and the non-IFRS operating margin was between 13 and 15 percent.

Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks currently estimates that Nokia Siemens Networks net sales in the fourth quarter 2012 were approximately EUR 4.0 billion and the non-IFRS operating margin was between 13 and 15 percent, which compares to the previous outlook of approximately positive 8 percent, plus or minus four percentage points. Nokia Siemens Networks non-IFRS operating margin includes a positive impact from non-recurring IPR income of approximately EUR 30 million.

During the fourth quarter 2012, multiple factors positively affected Nokia Siemens Networks’ businesses to a greater extent than previously expected. Preliminary information indicates that the main factors include:
More favorable product and regional mix in Nokia Siemens Networks. In addition, Nokia Siemens Networks recognized non-recurring IPR income of approximately EUR 30 million; and
– Better than expected improvement under Nokia Siemens Networks’ restructuring program to reduce operating expenses and production overheads. 

Preliminary outlook for the first quarter 2013:

Nokia expects its non-IFRS Devices & Services operating margin in the first quarter 2013 to be approximately negative 2 percent, plus or minus four percentage points. This outlook is based on Nokia’s expectations regarding a number of factors, including:
– competitive industry dynamics continuing to negatively affect the Smart Devices and Mobile Phones business units;
– the first quarter being a seasonally weak quarter;
– consumer demand, particularly for our Lumia and Asha smartphones;
– continued ramp up for our new Lumia smartphones;
– expected cost reductions under Devices & Services’ restructuring program; and
– the macroeconomic environment.

Nokia expects Location & Commerce non-IFRS operating margin in the first quarter 2013 to be negative due to lower recognized revenue from internal sales, which carry higher gross margin, and to a lesser extent by a negative mix shift within external sales.

Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks expect Nokia Siemens Networks non-IFRS operating margin in the first quarter 2013 to be approximately positive 3 percent, plus or minus four percentage points.  This outlook is based on Nokia Siemens Networks’ expectations regarding a number of factors, including:
– competitive industry dynamics;
– the first quarter being a seasonally weak quarter;
– product and regional mix;
– expected continued improvement under Nokia Siemens Networks’ restructuring program; and
– the macroeconomic environment.

Nokia will provide more details when it reports fourth quarter and full year 2012 results on January 24, 2013.

Nokia will be hosting a conference call today at 13:30 UK time (8:30 EST).

The low priced, Android based smartphones of China will change the global market

During the 12 months or so China took over the overall leading market role for smartphones from the key markets considered to be in the lead: US, Australia, Brazil, Great Britain (GB), Germany, France, Italy and Spain.

An even more dramatic change was that while on the old, combined lead market of the above countries high/moderate margin products were the dominating ones, on the new lead market of China average retail prices went down in the second quarter of 2012 to 1560 yuan (i.e. US$246) for the #1 Android with a whopping 82.8% market share, and to 1320 yuan (i.e. US$208) for the #2 Symbian now having only 6% share of the market.

It is notable as well that in China Apple had only a 6% market share vs. 23.7% in the combined old lead markets. According to a recent Reuters video report from Hong Kong we are witnessing (you can also watch this report in this post, as embedded well below in the following elaboration of details):

… commoditization of smartphones … hardware specifications for the handsets have already peaked…

A race to the bottom therefore will present a major challenge for Apple and Samsung who put together have dominated the industry in the last couple of years. If the China trends spread globally the shift to cheaper handsets will mean tighter margins and slower growth for this industry powerhouses and new opportunities for little known upstarts like Xiaomi.

Given my previous trend tracking posts the change will even be more dramatic as:

  1. The best smartphone based on the MediaTek MT6577 both technically and in terms of price is the MT6577-based JiaYu G3 with IPS Gorilla glass 2 sreen of 4.5” etc. for $154 (factory direct) in China and $183 [Sept 13, 2012], which is also the best example of the low priced, Android based smartphones of China will change the global market.
  2. Lowest H2’12 device cost SoCs from Spreadtrum will redefine the entry level smartphone and feature phone markets [July 26 – Aug 16, 2012]
    Boosting the MediaTek MT6575 success story with the MT6577 announcement  – UPDATED with MT6588/83 coming early 2013 in Q42012 and 8-core MT6599 in 2013 [June 27, July 27, Sept 11-13, Sept 26, Oct 2, 2012]
    Smartphone-like Asha Touch from Nokia: targeting the next billion users with superior UX created for ultra low-cost and full touch S40 devices [July 20 – Aug 12, 2012]
    MediaTek’s ‘smart-feature phone’ effort with likely Nokia tie-up[Aug 15-31, 2012]
  3. Update: China to ship 300 mil. smartphones in ’13: MediaTek head [The China Post, Sept 26, 2012]: … overall shipments in China may reach 200 million in 2012.
  4. Update: China market: Dual-core CPUs, 4-inch displays become standards for entry-level smartphones [DIGITIMES, Sept 17, 2012]:
Local brands in China have made upgrades to the specifications of their entry-level smartphones for the CNY1,000-1,500 (US$158-237) segment making dual-core 1GHz processors and 4-inch displays the industry standards, according to industry sources.
Prices of the previous mainstream models with single-core CPUs and displays below 4-inch sizes for the CNY1,000 segment in the first half of 2012 are now expected to drop to CNY500-800, the sources added.
China Unicom has led the purchase of the upgraded dual-core, 4-inch display smartphones recently, and its suppliers are all China-based vendors including Huawei Technologies, ZTE, Lenovo, Coolpad, TCL, Hisense, K-Touch and Wanlida, the sources revealed, adding that those makers will source chipset solutions from Qualcomm or MediaTek.
First-tier international players did not participate in China Unicom’s procurement on concerns of pricing and hardware specifications, the source asserted.
However, the pace of hardware upgrading may start slowing down as telecom companies in China are mulling reducing their subsidies to smartphone subscribers, while smartphone makers are also trying to maintain their profit margins, commented the sources.
The next round of competition will shift from hardware to software including product design, user’s interface and also smart audio recognition, the sources noted.

Neither Apple nor Samsung reacted to these challenges yet. Nokia was also playing safe with its recent announcement:
Unique differentiators of Nokia Lumia 920/820 innovated for high-volume superphone markets of North America, Europe and elsewhere [Sept 6, 2012]

We may expect a fundamental reorganisation of the market in the next two quarters.

Meanwhile read through the details included below and make your own, hopefully more fine-tuned conclusions and predictions:

imageimage

See: Kantar: Windows Phone has overtaken RIM Market Share in USA, “Key 8 Countries”
[WMPoweruser, Sept 3, 2012]

imageimage

Note that in terms of mobile data traffic the market share is quite different. For North America (U.S. and Canada) Chitika Insights, the independent research arm of online ad network Chitika, released the following web usage market share report [Sept 5, 2012]:

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Remark: iPads and other tablets are included here as well!

Relative to all that China is a quite different story:

3G phones months shipments reach 21.64 million, domestic mobile share over 70% – 3G手机月出货量达2164万部 国产手机份额超七成 [Sohu IT – 搜狐IT, Sept 10, 2012]

According to data published by the Telecommunications Research Institute of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology …
根据工业和信息化部电信研究院公布的数据 …

[the data in the translated Chinese text I’ve compiled into the below table:]

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China sees soaring smartphone market in Q2 [Xinhua, Sept 3, 2012]

Beijing: China’s smartphone market saw its sales volume soar to 38.19 million units in the second quarter, according to a report released Monday by market researcher Analysys International.

The figure represented a 22.5-per cent increase compared with that of the previous quarter and a sharp rise of 127.1 per cent over the corresponding period in 2011, said the report.

Nearly 67 million mobile phones were sold in China in the second quarter, the report said, representing a 1-per cent decrease from the previous quarter and a 2-per cent decrease from the corresponding period in 2011.

Stellar growth sees China take 27% of global smart phone shipments, powered by domestic vendors [Canalys press release, Aug 2, 2012] – Android is the clear platform of choice, accounting for 81% of Chinese shipments

Shanghai, Palo Alto, Singapore and Reading – Canalys published its final Q2 2012 country-level shipment estimates to clients yesterday. Results show that China saw phenomenal growth of 199% year-on-year and 32% over the previous quarter. In total, more than 42 million smart phones were shipped into the channel in China in Q2 2012, representing the second consecutive quarter of record breaking volumes in a single country market. China accounted for 27% of the 158 million global smart phone shipments, compared to 16% for the United States.
Notably, growth in China was heavily driven by domestic vendors, while international vendors struggled to keep pace.
While Samsung maintained its overall leadership position in China with a 17% market share, this reduced sequentially as volumes were flat and as several local vendors closed the gap. ZTE, Lenovo and Huawei were the second-, third- and fourth-placed vendors, ahead of Apple, making up a third of the market. They achieved growth of 171%, 2,665% and 252% year-on-year respectively. Collectively, domestic Chinese vendors shipped 25.6 million units, representing a growth of 518% and 60% of the market. By comparison, international vendors grew by a more modest 67% to 16.7 million units. Apple fell to fifth place in China. While its shipments were up 102% year-on-year, they were down 37% compared to Q1 2012.
‘The rise of the domestic tier-one brands has been aided by a number of factors. Their reactiveness to market demands and deep understanding of local consumer behavior and preferences have been key in helping them surpass international peers in the fast-evolving Chinese market. Local tier-one vendors have worked hard in recent quarters to greatly improve their brand resonance among consumers and to expand and enhance their relationships and influence within operators,’ said Canalys Research Director for China, Nicole Peng. ‘But the tier-two vendors — the likes of Oppo, K-Touch and Gionee — have also stamped their mark, boosting smart phone shipments into tier-three and tier-four cities, predominantly through the open channels. As feature phone vendors, they already have established partnerships and strong brand awareness. These domestic vendors are making significant progress transitioning their portfolios and customer bases to be more focused on smart phones.’
Nokia and Motorola both lost significant ground in China, with Nokia’s volumes down 47% on Q2 2011. ‘Among the international vendors, only HTC managed an outstanding performance in mainland China. Its shipments grew 389% year-on-year to reach 1.8 million units for the quarter,’ said Jessica Kwee, Canalys Research Analyst. ‘Its success this quarter is heavily based on the strong performance of Desire V series devices, designed with the local China market in mind, underscoring the importance of tailoring propositions to local consumer preferences.’
Android has become a major growth driver in China, running on 81% of the smart phones shipped in China in Q2 2012.
On a global basis, Android continued to grow in significance, surpassing 100 million quarterly smart phone shipments for the first time and reaching two-thirds share of the market. ‘Growth in Android volumes of 110% far outpaced growth in the overall market of 47% year-on-year, heavily driven by Samsung, which saw Android volumes of over 45 million, contributed to by a full and broad portfolio of products, from its high-end flagship Galaxy S III down to its aggressively priced Galaxy Y and Galaxy Mini. Its sponsorship of the London Olympics and subsequent product placements are sure to attract new customers to ensure that Q3 delivers a strong performance,’ commented Pete Cunningham, Canalys Principal Analyst.
Samsung retained its gold medal position in the global smart phone market with a 31% share, followed by Apple and Nokia once again. Huawei and ZTE were unable to push in on the global top five with shipments of their own branded devices. HTC moved up to fourth place, though, just ahead of RIM, which shipped 8.5 million units in the calendar quarter.

Global smart phone market

Analyst contacts
To speak with any analyst quoted in this release, please contact the appropriate Canalys office: Nicole Peng, Jessica Kwee (Canalys APAC), Pete Cunningham (Canalys EMEA). Alternatively, you can speak with other members of Canalys’ global team of mobile analysts: Chris Jones (Canalys Americas), Rachel Lashford (Canalys APAC), Tim Shepherd (Canalys EMEA).
About Canalys
Canalys is an independent analyst firm that strives to guide clients on the future of the technology industry and to think beyond the business models of the past. We deliver smart market insights to IT, channel and service provider professionals around the world. Our customer-driven analysis and consulting services empower businesses to make informed decisions and generate sales. We stake our reputation on the quality of our data, our innovative use of technology, and our high level of customer service.

Smart phone and pad forecasts show varying OS fortunes [Canalys press release, Sept 10, 2012] – China and Android influence smart phone landscape, the US and Apple dominate pads

Shanghai, Palo Alto, Singapore and Reading – The latest product announcements by leading smart phone and pad vendors will help drive consumer demand to new heights, according to Canalys. It forecasts that in 2016, global annual smart phone shipments will be around 1.2 billion units, meaning a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 19.5%. It predicts pad shipments in the same year will hit 207 million – a CAGR of 26.8%.
Apple’s latest unveiling is attracting extraordinary interest and competitors have also made several major announcements in the past week, including Windows 8 devices from Nokia and Samsung; new Android smart phones from Sony, Motorola and Samsung; and Amazon’s enhanced Kindle Fire pads. With these big vendors attracting the headlines, Canalys has issued a timely reminder that the trends across pads and smart phones in various countries will be markedly different.
In smart phones, Canalys expects Asia Pacific to remain the largest region by volume, with annual shipments reaching 594 million by 2016. China will account for almost half of all shipments in the region and nearly a quarter of the world’s smart phones in 2016. This equates to only 10 million less than is forecast to ship in the whole of the Americas in that year.
Canalys managing director for Mobile and APAC, Rachel Lashford, said, ‘The latest, in-depth research for our dedicated Smart Phone Analysis China service reveals there will be a substantial increase in the number of first-time smart phone users in China over the next 12 months, while feature phone shipments will continue to decline. Smart phone sales will move beyond tier-one and tier-two cities.’
China’s domestic feature phone vendors are rapidly moving their businesses to smart phones, supported by low-cost solutions from chipset providers, such as MediaTek, Spreadtrum and Qualcomm’s QRD.
‘We anticipate strong demand from local Chinese vendors selling in both operator and open channels,’ said Nicole Peng, Canalys Research Director for China. ‘Chipset vendors are reporting growing momentum in 2.5G (EDGE) smart phone solutions. For less developed areas where 3G coverage is limited, 2.5G smart phones have advantages in cost and battery life. They are becoming popular with consumers, especially where prices are already close to those of feature phones (around RMB500, US$78). The tier-three and tier-four cities are feature phone vendors’ traditional strongholds. Local vendors will use their long-standing relationships with open channels and their established infrastructure to distribute smart phones, with or without operator subsidies, over the next few years.’
In terms of percentage growth, Canalys expects Latin America to move fastest, with a CAGR to 2016 of 27.3%. It forecasts good double-digit growth in all countries, but Brazil and Mexico will account for more than half of all shipments in the region.
Globally, Canalys expects Android to remain dominant, with 57% of the smart phones shipped in 2016 running the OS (up from 49% in 2011). It expects Apple’s share of this much larger market to remain similar to today, at around 18%. Microsoft is expected to make inroads over the coming years.
In the pad market, however, the OS picture will be quite different. Canalys expects Apple to take a little under half of the market in 2016. The plethora of Windows 8 pads that will be introduced over the next few years are predicted to bring Microsoft’s share to around 17%. Competitively priced Android pads, such as Google’s Nexus 7 and Amazon’s Kindle Fire models will have an impact in terms of volumes, but Android’s share is forecast to remain relatively stable at 35%, unless vendors make radical improvements to the overall user experience. In contrast to smart phone market trends, the US is expected to dominate pad shipments, with the volume more than doubling to 88 million units in 2016. China is expected to be the second largest country market, with shipments of around 20 million.
‘Pads are the fastest growing consumer electronics products in history and are forecast to represent 29% of total PC shipments in 2016. But the market remains dominated by a single vendor. Other PC and smart phone vendors are currently finding it hard to weaken Apple’s position,’ said Canalys Analyst Tim Coulling. ‘The only product that most would consider a big hit is the Kindle Fire, brought to market by Amazon – an Internet retailer. Tight integration of hardware, software and services is a prerequisite for competing in the pad market, even at low price points, and fragmentation among other pad vendors’ offers helps Apple maintain its position.’
Analyst contacts
To speak with any analyst quoted in this release, please contact the appropriate Canalys office: Rachel Lashford, Nicole Peng (Canalys APAC), Tim Coulling (Canalys EMEA). Or contact another member of Canalys’ global analyst team: Chris Jones (Canalys Americas), Jessica Kwee, Pin-Chen Tang (Canalys APAC), Pete Cunningham, Tim Shepherd, Tom Evans (Canalys EMEA).

Analysys data: 2012Q2 China Android Smartphone market 82.8% [Analysys International release, Sept 5, 2012] as translated by Bing:

Easy views network hearing” easy views international: according to EnfoDesk easy views intellectual library industry database recently publishing of 2012 2nd quarter China phone terminal market monitoring report under displayed, 2 quarter, China smart phone terminal (does not containing parallel and cottage machine) market in the, Android Department sales accounted for than from Shang last quarter of 76.7% upgrade to this quarter of 82.8%, net 6.1%. While the Symbian sales percentage has continued to free fall to the ground from the parent 11.8% to 6%. In addition, iOS small callback to 6%.

2012Q2 OS smartphone market penetration in China (not including parallel and cottage)
2 quarter pick-up systems from Smartphone ( encyclopedia of Analysys : smartphones ) [average smartphone] price changes, Android from 1670 [yuan i.e. US$263] last quarter, continuing down to the quarter of 1560 [yuan i.e. US$246]; 1320 [yuan i.e. US$208] of Symbian from last quarter down to 1170 dollars [yuan i.e. US$185] this quarter.

2012Q2 China Android and Symbian Smartphone price
(not including parallel and cottage)
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Analysys data: 2012Q1 China Android Smartphone market share increased from 76.7% [Analysys International release, June 6, 2012] as translated by Bing:

Analysys Web video” Analysys: at present, according to EnfoDesk Analysys think-tank on traditional retail markets of mobile phones (of the last quarter of 2012 quarterly monitoring mobile terminal market) data monitor display: Chinese smartphone market, Android system’s market share in handset sales rising 5 consecutive quarters.
Vulnerability analysis:
In the last quarter of 2012 China Mobile end-markets quarterly monitoring data show end of 2012 Q1, carrying Android in the Smartphone market system’s market share in the Smartphone Terminal 76.7%, 10% average quarterly market share gain. At the same time, as the Smartphone market continues to mature, carrying Android system average Smartphone prices are also way down to 1670 [yuan i.e. US$263 from 2300 yuan i.e. US$363 a year earlier].
Combined with traditional mobile phone sales channels under the line status, EnfoDesk Analysys Research think-tank believes that mobile phone sales market share of Android system continue to enhance, benefit from its open source nature attract numerous manufacturers to participate in, and China in the past two years in the Smartphone market and 3G business increment. Through the performance of manufacturers on the market today as well as the impact of EnfoDesk Analysys think tank study says
1. Is now dominated by application of the formation of eco-systems, as well as the Android open source, attracting new industry participants, such as Internet companies to enter product prices are depressed, make the increasingly intense market competition environment, product prices are driven down, threats to traditional enterprise bargaining power in the channel.
2012Q1 China smartphone sales share
2. Fragmentation trends exacerbate the Android system. Traditional manufacturing enterprises to overcome the effects of homogenization of products of intelligent systems, secondary development on the Android system, causes the application to version adjusted accordingly, application developer development costs gradually increased.
Smartphone price quarterly changes of 2011Q1-2012Q1 Android system
3. Sales in this period dominated by domestic brands in the low-end products, intelligent products of these enterprises continue to 3G input costs on the production line. But at the same time, while veteran international brand market share continues to decline, it would shorten the product line, focusing its research and development production 4G products research and development. With the advent of 4G era, will reshuffle the mobile terminal market. (Analysys International)
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Related reading:
2011Q2 China’s massive increase in Android share Symbian tumble

Is sun setting on smartphone profit miracle? [ReutersVideo YouTube channel, Aug 16, 2012]

… in 2 years the low-end has blown up …
China smartphone sales by price tier Q1 – 2010 Q1 – 2012
<1,500 yuan [<US$ 237] 17.7% 60%
1,500-3,000 yuan [US$ 237-473] 51.5% 24%
>3,000 yuan [>US$ 473] 30.8% 16%
Source: Jefferies Research
Faster, bigger, better: the smartphone tech arms race has produced great handsets and great returns. But China’s market trends suggest cheaper is set to be the next battle cry.
Cynthia Meng, China/HK TMT Equity Research, Jefferies Hong Kong:
[00:49] Next year it’s going to be about who is going to provide the best value for my money from a consumer point of view, from a telco point of view, because we think that hardware specifications for the handsets have already peaked. [01:03]
Narrator, xxx Gordon in Hong Kong:
In other words the oversized screen and quadcore processors of your precious Samsung [Galaxy] S III will soon be standard and achieved in handsets in China. [01:13]
commoditization of smartphones
[02:11] A race to the bottom will present a major challenge for Apple and Samsung who put together have dominated the industry in the last couple of years. [02:19] If the China trends spread globally the shift to cheaper handsets will mean tighter margins and slower growth for this industry powerhouses and new opportunities for little known upstarts like Xiaomi. [02:26]

The Chinese View: VIDEO: STUDIO INTERVIEW: CHINA’S SMARTPHONE MARKET [CCTV News – CNTV English, Sept 3, 2012]

iPhone Ranked Seventh in China’s Smartphone Market — Watch Out, ZTE [AllThingsD.com, Aug 24, 2012]

Apple’s iPhone has been gaining a lot of traction in China recently. As Apple CEO Tim Cook said during the company’s third-quarter earnings call, greater China accounted for two-thirds of Apple’s revenue in the Asia-Pacific region during the period.
“In terms of iPhones in general in mainland China, we were incredibly pleased with our results,” Cook said. “We were up over 100 percent, year over year.”
That’s an impressive achievement. But Apple still has a lot of work to do in China before the iPhone claims the same levels of market penetration it enjoys in the U.S. In China, the iPhone has captured about 7.5 percent of the smartphone market, compared to rival Samsung, which has claimed more than 20 percent, according to IHS iSuppli. Despite its popularity in the country, the iPhone is still ranked seventh in the Chinese smartphone market.
Why? Two reasons. First, Apple doesn’t yet offer a truly low-end smartphone that appeals to price-conscious Chinese consumers. (To be clear, China Telecom is offering the iPhone fully subsidized, but it requires subscribers to sign a contract that ties them to a two-year $62 per month plan.) Second, and more importantly, the iPhone doesn’t yet support Time Division Synchronous Code Division Multiple Access (TD-SCDMA), China’s homegrown wireless standard. And until it does, China Mobile, the world’s largest wireless carrier, can’t offer it to its 688 million or so subscribers.
“Among all the international smartphone brands competing in China, Apple is the only one not offering a product that complies with the domestic TD-SCDMA air standard,” IHS iSuppli’s Kevin Wang said in a statement. “For Apple, this is a huge disadvantage, as TD-SCDMA represents the fastest-growing major air standard for smartphones in China, with shipments of compliant phones expected to rise by a factor of 10 from 2011 to 2016.”
In other words, if Apple wants access to the massive addressable market that China Mobile has to offer, it’s going to have to offer a lower-end iPhone variant designed specifically for TD-SCDMA, something it has been loath to do in the past, and hasn’t given any indication that it’s willing to do in the future. As Cook said during Apple’s last earnings call, the company feels that its business is strongest when it focuses on making the best products it can, not the most inexpensive ones.
“I firmly believe that people in the emerging markets want great products, like they do in developed markets,” Cook said. “And so we’re going to stick to our knitting and make the best products. And we think that if we do that, we’ve got a very, very good business ahead of us. So that’s what we are doing.”

Breakingviews: Apple v. Samsung [ReutersVideo YouTube channel, Aug 27, 2012]

Breakingviews columnists discuss the implications of Apple’s U.S. victory in the high-profile tech patent spat and the implications for future smartphone devices and lawsuits elsewhere.

Apple Should Take The $199 Chinese Smartphone Seriously [Seeking Alpha, Sept 6, 2012]

At a time when China is set to overtake the U.S. as the world’s largest smartphone market, little-known Chinese firms are prepared to battle it out for market dominance with the maker of the game-changing iPhone, Apple (AAPL). As per the predictions of IDC and Gartner, China’s smartphone shipments could hit 140 million this year, exceeding those in the United States.
There are a number of Chinese brands offering similar capabilities, nominally, as the iPhone at half the price, most of them using a forked version of Google’s (GOOG) Android. The names include ZTE Corp., Lenovo Group, and other small private firms like Xiaomi, Gionee, and Meizu Technology. Even cheaper smartphones are offered by Alibaba Group, Shanda Interactive, and Baidu (BIDU) for fewer than ¥1,000 (~$150 U.S.).
Xiaomi Technology, founded just two years ago, has emerged as a serious potential threat to the likes of Apple and Samsung in smartphone arena. According to its CEO, the company sold more than 3 million phones with revenues close to $1 billion for the first half of 2012. Its latest offering, a successor to its popular MiOne (MI) smartphone, the MI2, costs less than half the price of iPhone 4S, but exceeds its specifications. Xiaomi not only tries to mimic the iPhone’s specifications, but has also been able to charge fans ¥199 (~$31) to attend the Beijing launch of the phone, the same way as Apple followers would pay to see Steve Jobs showcasing new products. The Xiaomi conference was attended by more than 1,000 people, with the proceeds going to charity. The MI2, which is expected to hit the markets in October, will have quad-core Qualcomm (QCOM) S4 Pro SoC, an 8 mega-pixel camera, and a voice-assistant similar to Apple’s Siri, and is priced at ¥1,999 ($310). This is no cheap knock-off, but rather a serious piece of hardware packed with the latest technology.
The fascinating part of Android’s rise here is that Microsoft (MSFT) will likely see more profit from many of these phones than Google will due to the licensing agreements many of them have made to avoid patent issues with Redmond. Reports are spotty, but Microsoft collects anywhere from $5 to $15 per Android license and has deals with at least half of the phones sold. Moreover, it is very possible it makes more money than Google does.
In the coming years it is expected that Apple’s market share may flatten out or even dip, as it has this year, but market share is not Apple’s goal; it has always been about margins — selling a premium product at extremely high margins to those with the resources to not care about the upfront cost. Estimates from IDC place the sub-$200 smartphone at 40% of the shipments, while devices costing more than $700 made up 11% of the market, which is where Apple plays and why it still controls most of the profits generated by the industry. China and India make up 40% of new smartphone activations.
This huge difference in shipments is mainly due to the limited purchasing power of an average Chinese person, which is around ¥800-¥1,500 ($130-$240). By contrast, the iPhone comes with a price tag of around $800, the equivalent of two months of earnings of an urban Chinese person (in an area that has around 670 million people).
According to a report from Gartner, Apple’s market share by volume has been sliding and iOS‘ share of the mobile operating system space is expected to slip to third place by 2016 below Android and Windows Phone. The Gartner report is, however, very controversial as Windows Phone has not proven anything to this point, although Nokia’s (NOK) sales of its Lumia 610 and Asha line of proto-smartphones are keeping its brand alive while it searches for the killer phone. Even in its second-largest market, iPhone sales slipped for the April-June quarter due to inventory adjustments after the huge launch of the iPhone 4S.
Apart from these estimates, Apple also suffers on various fronts in China. The iPhone is backed by China Telecom and China Unicom, but the country’s and the world’s leading telco China Mobile (with about 655 million subscribers) has still not supported it. Apple and China Mobile are still working on the details of China Mobile’s implementation of CDMA, which requires Apple to build a specific phone for its network.
Responding to the competition and the difference between the iPhone and the local offerings, Apple recently slashed the price of the iPhone 3GS below $200. While an entry-level Apple phone is something that the market will absorb, part of Apple’s appeal is the status it confers and a 3GS simply not a strong enough status symbol to drive sales. Mix in that with Chinese preferences for buying from Chinese companies and this market becomes a whole lot harder for Apple to maintain not its sales per se — it can manipulate prices to maintain sales — but its extreme margins. The latest earnings call highlighted this as it sold a lot of lower-end iPads and iPhones in Asia, which pushed its results and future guidance under 40% net margins.
Companies like Lenovo, ZTE, and Huawei are gaining because they are Chinese and are providing good products at reasonable prices. Lenovo, in particular, is pushing its smartphone and PC strategy both up and down the value chain, similar to Samsung’s approach. It is working very well for Lenovo, whose revenues were up 40% in the second quarter when everyone else was complaining of softening business.
Apple’s problems are the standard problems for a company on top of the world; everyone will nibble away at it in various little ways. How it responds to this is key.
The recent lawsuit victory over Samsung and its pressing of the legal attack smacks of a company that is frightened. Why should it fear Samsung? And if it doesn’t, why did it go after Samsung and restrict consumer choice, a clear breach of its branding compact with its fans? Is it trying to push Samsung into Windows 8 Phone’s arms? All of these things point to further margin erosion for Apple and a slowing of its titanic growth without a new market to push into. As things stand now, staking a new position in Apple requires believing none of these issues matter.
It points to Apple becoming a value trap at some point in the future. Not every country, especially China, will grant Apple an injunction against knockoff competition; quite the opposite is true. Many investors are sitting on capital gains so large they can’t sell, and the dividend will pay them well enough to stay in even if the price goes nowhere. But new investors should be very careful in light of the market dynamics.

Microsoft adding staff, R&D in China mobile push [Associated Press, Sept 6, 2012]

BEIJING (AP) — Microsoft Corp. will hire more than 1,000 additional employees in China this year and boost research and development spending by 15 percent as it tries to catch up with Apple and Google in the fast-growing mobile Internet market, executives said Thursday.
The announcement adds to intensifying competition in wireless Internet in China, where nearly 400 million people surf the Web using mobile phones and other devices. Microsoft is promoting its Windows 8 mobile operating system but came late to the market and trails Apple Inc. and Google Inc., whose Android system is widely used in China.
“We respect that we have two players in the market which have a strong role, and we feel ready to attack and have different offers to basically change the game plan on that one,” said Microsoft’s CEO for China, Ralph Haupter, at a news conference.
The new employees will be in addition to Microsoft’s workforce of 4,500 in China and will be spread across research and development, marketing and customer service, Haupter said.
Research spending in China will rise by 15 percent over last year’s $500 million, according to another executive, Ya-Qin Zhang, Microsoft’s Asia-Pacific chairman for research and development. He said the current research staff of 3,000 would be expanded by about 15 percent.
Global technology companies and local rivals are spending heavily to gain a foothold in mobile Internet in the world’s most populous online market as Chinese users shift quickly to the new technology.
This week, Chinese search engine Baidu Inc. released its own new mobile browser to compete with Google and Apple and announced it will open a cloud computing center.
China had 538 million people online at the end of July, up 11 percent from a year earlier, according to the China Internet Network Information Center, an industry group. The share that uses wireless devices grew twice as fast, rising 22 percent to 388 million, or 70 percent of the total.
Android dominates the Chinese smartphone market, used on 76.7 percent of phones in the second first quarter of this year, according to Analysys International, a research firm. Apple’s iPhone dominates the higher end of the market.
Microsoft plans to recruit more local partners to develop mobile applications specifically for China, said Haupter. He said the company believes it has an advantage in doing that because developers can draw on their experience working on other Microsoft products.
Zhang said Microsoft’s six development centers in China that now spend about 80 percent of their time working on products for global markets will focus more on creating offerings tailored to Chinese customers.
Microsoft also plans to expand its cloud computing business in China, the executives said. Zhang said about 100,000 commercial customers now use its private cloud computing service and a service for use by the public is being developed.

Microsoft Names New Leaders in Key International Markets [Microsoft press release, April 13, 2012]

Ralph Haupter, currently serving as area vice president (AVP) for Microsoft Germany, has been promoted to corporate vice president and named CEO for Microsoft GCR. Haupter is replacing Simon Leung who has decided to leave Microsoft for personal and family reasons. Gordon Frazer, currently serving as managing director (MD) for Microsoft U.K., has been named chief operating officer (COO) for Microsoft GCR. He is replacing Michel van der Bel, who will assume the role of MD for Microsoft U.K. Haupter and van der Bel will report to Jean-Philippe Courtois, president of Microsoft International, and Frazer will report to Haupter. …
Haupter is a seven-year veteran of Microsoft, having delivered excellent and sustainable results in growth and profitability and repeatedly proving his ability to build and grow high-performing, diverse organizations. He previously served as head of the partner division for Europe, Middle East and Africa and general manager (GM) of Microsoft’s Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners Group for Western Europe, both based in Paris, and served as COO for Microsoft Germany before becoming the German AVP. Before that, he worked for IBM both in Germany and internationally.
Frazer is a 16-year veteran of Microsoft, having served as the GM for Microsoft South Africa for four years and most recently as the Microsoft U.K. MD for the past six years. He brings a tremendous amount of operational expertise to the Microsoft GCR team from his various roles across both developed and emerging markets. His leadership in managing the full breadth and depth of Microsoft’s business in the U.K. will serve as a strong asset in helping take Microsoft China’s operations to the next level of efficiency and growth.

Leading the New Era, Winning the Future—Microsoft Announces Development Strategy in China [Microsoft China press release, Sept 6, 2012]

Partnering for an Innovative, Competitive, and Talented China

New leadership team in Greater China
(third from left is the COO Gordon Frazer and the fourth is the CEO Ralph Haupter)
September 6, 2012, Beijing– Microsoft China today announced its new strategy and commitment to partnering with the country for an innovative, competitive and talented China by further enhancing and accelerating investments. In the new fiscal year, Microsoft will recruit more than 1,000 staff in China, 50% of which will be college graduates. Microsoft’s annual R&D investment will exceed $500 million, and the company will explore local markets in more provinces and deepen its engagement in industrial informatization.
Over two decades of growth, Microsoft China has continued to penetrate deeply into increasingly important local markets. Ralph Haupter, Corporate Vice President, Chairman & CEO Microsoft Greater China Region, said: “Since entering China 20 years ago, Microsoft has grown steadily in China and acquired a deeper understanding of the Chinese market. Our new strategy reflects our perception, emphasis and commitment to the China market. In this new era, China and the entire Greater China Region will become the source of global innovations. Through comprehensive devices and services combined with cloud computing, Microsoft is working closely with the Chinese government, partners, customers and the academic world, entering this new era by leveraging our advantages.”
Haupter stressed that this year is a big year for Microsoft, with the introduction of many new products and technologies, and also a year where Microsoft China is making a great effort to further develop the market. “Our new leadership team in Greater China has helped develop a new strategy for customers and partners, deepening cooperation with governments of all levels to strengthen innovation in China. The team will popularize new technologies and explore new markets,” Haupter said.
Through continuous investment of innovation resources and improving the scale of partnerships in China over the years, Microsoft Asia-Pacific R&D Group has become Microsoft’s largest R&D base outside of the United States, with the most complete functions and innovation chain covering basic research, technology incubation, product R&D and industry cooperation. Chinese R&D teams have made great contributions to Microsoft products launched this year, such as Windows Server2012, Windows 8, New Office, SQL Server 2012 and Surface. Ya-Qin Zhang, Corporate Vice President and Chairman of Microsoft Asia-Pacific R&D Group, said: “We are lucky to be in an era where globalization is deepening, the IT revolution is emerging and China is rising. Microsoft’s continuous exploration in natural human-machine interfaces, mobile Internet and cloud computing will help us win the future and contribute to China’s sustainable development.”
Samuel Shen, COO of Microsoft Asia-Pacific R&D Group, said Microsoft’s software outsourcing business was now worth more than $200 million per year. In the future, Microsoft will continue to work closely with local communities through programs such as the Internet of Things, Big Data, cloud computing, cloud-based smart cities and the Microsoft Accelerator for Cloud Computing, accelerating the vision of “Innovation in China, Innovation for the World”
According to Microsoft’s new strategy in China, Microsoft is committed to cooperating with the Chinese government and industry, aligning with China’s priorities and partnering for an Innovative, Competitive, and Talented China. Gordon Frazer, Vice President and COO of Microsoft Greater China Region, said that over the next five years, Microsoft China will expand its footprint in China, deepen cooperation with governments of all levels and partners, improve customer support and foster talents on a broad scale:
  • Expand Microsoft’s footprint in local markets: Over the next five years, Microsoft will expand its presence in over 20 cities across 15 provinces by expanding local teams, enhancing local management, working closely with local governments, making contributions to local informatization, building cloud-based smart cities, and providing cloud-based solutions for e-government, city management and citizen services.
  • Accelerate local partner ecosystems and expand service coverage: Microsoft will deepen customer services, deliver joint services and solutions with partners, and engage in further convergence of informatization and industry upgrading to improve the core competency of Chinese enterprises. By the end of this year, Microsoft will set up its second technical support center in China to enhance support for Chinese customers and partners, share best practices and knowledge of supporting global customers to help them accelerate the adoption of new technologies and share with them the experience of providing cloud services to customers in Asia. Microsoft will also drive partners’ development through many forms: system-grade innovation support for OEMs, software engineering assistance for software outsourcing companies and innovative design references for hardware manufacturers.
  • Foster talents in a large scale: Over the next five years, Microsoft will hire more talent in China to better serve and support its partners in China, foster talents for the Chinese software industry and improve the skills of Chinese youths.

China to Overtake United States in Smartphone Shipments in 2012, According to IDC [IDC press release, Aug 30, 2012]

Top Five Smartphone Markets and Market Share for 2011, 2012, and 2016 (based on shipments)

Country 2011 Market Share 2012 Market Share 2016 Market Share 2011 – 2016 CAGR
PRC 18.3% 26.5% 23.0% 26.2%
USA 21.3% 17.8% 14.5% 11.6%
India 2.2% 2.5% 8.5% 57.5%
Brazil 1.8% 2.3% 4.4% 44.0%
United Kingdom 5.3% 4.5% 3.6% 11.5%
Rest of World 51.1% 46.4% 46.0% 18.1%
Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 20.5%

Source: IDC Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, 2012 Q2 Forecast Release, August 30 2012

Strong end-user demand and an appetite for lower-priced smartphones will make China (PRC) the largest market for smartphones this year, overtaking the United States as the global leader in smartphone shipments. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, China will account for 26.5% of all smartphone shipments in 2012, compared to 17.8% for the United States.
“Looking ahead, the PRC smartphone market will continue to be lifted by the sub-US$200 Android segment,” said Wong Teck-Zhung, senior market analyst, Client Devices, IDC Asia/Pacific. “Near-term prices in the low-end segment will come down to US$100 and below as competition for market share intensifies among smartphone vendors. Carrier-subsidized and customized handsets from domestic vendors will further support the migration to smartphones and boost shipments. Looking ahead to the later years in the forecast, the move to 4G networks will be another growth catalyst.”
“Regionally, we expect smartphone demand to flow down to lower-tier cities,” added James Yan, senior market analyst for Computing Systems Research at IDC China. “After going through a period of sustained high growth, top-tier cities are likely to see decelerating smartphone growth rates. In contrast, secondary cities are expected to experience accelerated smartphone growth, with strong demand for low-cost models as well as high-end models, which are desired as status symbols.”
“The fact that China will overtake the United States in smartphone shipments does not mean that the U.S. smartphone market is grinding to a halt,” said Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC’s Mobile Phone Technology and Trends program. “Now that smartphones represent the majority of mobile phone shipments, growth is expected to continue, but at a slower pace. There is still a market for first-time users as well as thriving upgrade opportunities.”
“In addition to China and the United States, several other countries will emerge as key markets for smartphone shipment volume over the next five years,” said Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker program. “High-growth countries such as Brazil and Russia will become some of the most hotly contested markets as vendors seek to capture new customers and market share.”
Top Five Markets for Smartphone Shipments
As it becomes the leading country for smartphone shipments this year, the PRC smartphone market will continue to grow, primarily on demand for lower-cost handsets. While this bodes well from a volume perspective, it also means lower average sales values (ASVs), thinner margins, and increased competition from all players. Over the course of the forecast, China’s share of the global smartphone market will decline somewhat as smartphone adoption accelerates in other emerging markets.
Smartphone shipments into the United States will increase as users upgrade their devices and feature-phone users switch over to smartphones. Furthermore, a combination of lower-priced models, expansion of 4G networks, and the proliferation of shared data plans will encourage continued smartphone adoption. Smartphones are already the device of choice at the major carriers, and regional and prepaid carriers are following suit and competing with alternative service plans.
With smartphone penetration in India currently among the lowest in Asia/Pacific, the market has tremendous untapped growth potential. Low-end smartphones offering dual-SIM capability and local apps and priced around US$100 will rapidly bring this market to life. Although 3G data plans are currently too expensive for the majority of consumers in India, IDC expects the popularization of 3G, and in later years 4G, to drive smartphone uptake as operators roll out more affordable data plans and generous subsidies while expanding offerings to tier 2 and tier 3 cities. The affordability of service plans will be another important key to smartphone adoption in India.
Smartphone growth in Brazil will be bolstered by strategic investments by mobile operators, smartphone vendors, and regulators. Operators’ focus on increasing ARPU will drive greater demand for smartphones while smartphone vendors will look to reap greater profitability from offering such devices. The Brazilian government, meanwhile, will offer tax exemptions for smartphones and protect local manufacturing against foreign vendors. These factors, combined with solid end-user demand, will drive smartphone volumes in the coming years.
The United Kingdom has been one of the fastest growing smartphone markets in Western Europe, driven by the high operator subsidies and long-term post-paid contracts. Over the forecast period, smartphone shipments will continue to increase due to the introduction of LTE and a new range of services that will appeal to heavy smartphone users. In addition, price erosion on HSPA devices will also attract feature phones users. Growth rates will slow in the later years of the forecast as penetration plateaus and operators seek out alternative subsidy models.

The 41 MP Nokia 808 PureView meeting the vanishing world challenge

D&I_Photography_2

imageWhile world renown photographer Dennis Manarchy was building his huge ‘The Eye of America’ camera Nokia have succeeded with their ongoing camera phone inventions to match the requirements of Manarchy and to accompany him on his year long journey of “Vanishing Cultures: An American Portrait” project.

Watch the below video presentation of this unusual still classic camera first (for 12-metre-high portraits):

An epic camera that will travel around the United States as part of the Vanishing Cultures project to capture the faces and stories of our amazing people. Its dimensions are 35 feet long, 12 feet tall and 8 feet wide and it produces one-of-a-kind negatives that are two-metre-tall for as big as 12-metre-high portraits.

Then proceed with the following presentation videos of the the truely revolutionary, Nokia 808 PureView camera phone:

Nokia 808 PureView http://nokia.ly/ygwe7d It’s not about the size of the pixels, it’s what you do with them. PureView packs the goodness of 6 pixels into 1 for sharp, clear 5 megapixel photos that are ready to share. Discover the next breakthrough in photography http://nokia.com/Nokia808PureView

More videos on the unique capabilities of Nokia 808 PureView:
Zoom, zoom and zoom again: Take a picture, then zoom into the image up to three times with no loss of detail. Shoot in Full HD 1080p video and zoom into the action four times, or choose Full HD 360p mode and zoom in 12 times.
Get the professional touch: Give your photos a sharper perspective or special effect with the PureView’s creative controls. Quickly shoot at optimum settings for close-ups, landscapes or night shots, or play with the creative modes to make your images really stand out.
Don’t be afraid of the dark: Never miss the real story. The Carl Zeiss lens and 41 megapixel image sensor on a Nokia 808 PureView make the most of the available light so you don’t have to give it a moment’s thought.
Nokia Rich Recording: Records best in class stereo audio with every detail. Whilst most high end smartphones can only record without distortion to around 110db, the Nokia 808 can comfortably continue to around 140-145 db, which is 4 times louder than the conventional mics can record. Apart from that Nokia Rich Recording can also record very low frequencies also without any distortion. The combination of all of these elements means the Nokia 808 records audio with almost CD like quality. It has to be heard to be believed.
Technology breakthroughs and benefits explained by Damian Dinning (Head of Imaging Experiences, Nokia Smart Devices): In-house developed sensor, high-performance optics developed in collaboration with Carl-Zeiss for this sensor, and handling one billion pixels per second by software for video. These breakthrougs producing two significant benefits which you have not been able to do in the past. First is incredible image quality: 5 MP images which are only 1 MB in file size, which have significantly more detail than any other camera smartphone you can find on the market. … It is incredible how much detail is in there. The second thing is zoom. … Wanted to change the way the industry thinks about pixels. … Then you realize the true benefits: high-performance images, high-performance video. Even in HD video have four times lossless zoom. … Others: watch the video itself!

Finally see what is the essence of the Vanishing Cultures: An American Portrait project and how Nokia 808 PureView fits into that, through the eyes of the photographer, Dennis Manarchy himself:

Dennis Manarchy talks about creating the world’s biggest camera and its huge, detailed images — and casts an expert eye over the Nokia 808 PureView http://nokia.ly/HaDWLD – the world’s first 41MP smartphone camera.

More information on that:
Nokia 808 PureView: The next breakthrough in photography [Nokia microsite, March 27, 2012]
Why the big number? [Nokia background microsite, Feb 27, 2012]
Dennis Manarchy: A man on a mission with the world’s largest camera [Nokia Connects, March 28, 2012]
The photography edition of the Nokia Connects Live podcast [Nokia Connects, March 26, 2012]: “Photography Week” podcast with Damian Dinning (Head of Imaging Experiences, Nokia Smart Devices), John Suler (Professor of Psychology at Rider University) and Dennis Manarchy
Vanishing Cultures [project site, Jan 17, 2012] and the project brochure
The devil in the detail [Nokia’s Dennis Manarchy related branding page, March 31, 2012]
Nokia 808 PureView [Nokia Europe product page, Feb 27, 2012]

Nokia under transition (as reported by the company)

Note and updates: stock price is up 3.17%  as per above (those numbers are in US$)
– see more: Nokia trying the first Lumia month in China with China Telecom exclusive [March 28, 2012]
– Nokia seeks to retake China market share [Reuters, March 28, 2012]: “Shares in Nokia rose 3 percent to 4.116 euros, helped also after Sweden’s Swedbank lifted its rating to “buy” from “neutral”.
– Are Nokia’s Largest Shareholders Betting on a Turnaround With New Releases in China? [Wall St. Cheat Sheet, March 28, 2012]

279 institutional firms indicated owning shares of Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) in both Q3 2011 and Q4 2011. These firms reported owning a total of 348.305 million shares on 09/30/2011 and 382.757 million shares [out of 3.74B, i.e. ~10%] on 12/31/2011. The shares closed at $5.66 on 09/30/2011 and $4.82 on 12/31/2011, for an aggregate market value of $1.971 billion and $1.845 billion, respectively.

– Nokia: The Recovery Begins; One Analyst Turns Bullish [Forbes, March 30, 2012]

… Town Hall Investment Research analyst Jamie Townsend this morning upped his rating onNokia to Buy from Avoid.

His view: for Nokia, the turnaround has begun. And for that he credits the company’s still unfolding new relationship with Microsoft, and its decision to adopt Windows Phone 7 as the operating system for its high-end smartphones.

“Our renewed enthusiasm is primarily driven by Nokia’s smartphone business and our belief that long term the company is now poised to slowly reestablish itself as a meaningful player in smartphone markets around the world,” Townsend writes in a research note. “While we believe that Q1 and Q2 2012 will continue to show the struggle between the death of Symbian and the rise of WP7, we also believe the pieces are now in place for a gradual reversal in the market share losses experienced in the last three years. Specifically, we are expecting positive unit surprises in the U.S. and Western Europe over the next two quarters, albeit coming off a very low base and expectations. While only a wild card right now, we also believe that some sort of partnership between Microsoft, Nokia and RIM is now a real possibility.”

“We believe that there are two issues for RIM that relate to NOK,” he writes. “First, we believe that RIM is now where NOK was approximately a year ago. There was no longer any doubt as to the declining state of the smartphone business but also no clear path to recovery. As we know from Nokia’s last year, the recovery required bold action and the a long lead time to the actual point of product improvement. We believe investors should wait until the recovery is clear which in our view is not yet the case with RIM, but is now on the near horizon for NOK.”

“Second, RIM management on the quarterly conference call made it abundantly clear that the company is seeking a new partnership that will allow it to enhance its consumer appeal but allow it to focus its attention on its core historical strength with the enterprise,” he adds. “We believe that this strategy carries a number of risks, but also believe that Nokia/Microsoft represents the most likely candidate for such a partnership. We have no data points to support that this will happen or that Nokia/Microsoft would want it to, but believe it to be a real possibility over the next six months. Should it occur we believe it would be perceived as a meaningful positive for NOK shares.”

NOK this morning is up 7 cents, or 1.2%, to $5.49.

End of updates

According to the below excerpts from the Nokia 2011 fiscal year report [March 8, 2012]

Current strategic business units, their responsibilities and accountabilities:

[F-9] As of April 1, 2011, the Group’s operational structure featured two new operating and reportable segments: Smart Devices and Mobile Phones, which combined with Devices & Services Other and unallocated items form Devices & Services business.

As of October 1, 2011, the Group formed a Location & Commerce business which combines NAVTEQ and Nokia’s social location services operations from Devices & Services. Location & Commerce business is an operating and reportable segment. From the third quarter 2008 until the end of the third quarter 2011, NAVTEQ was a separate reportable segment of Nokia. As a consequence, Nokia currently has four operating and reportable segments: Smart Devices and Mobile Phones within Devices & Services, Location & Commerce and Nokia Siemens Networks.

Prior year segment specific results for 2009 and 2010 have been regrouped and recasted for comparability purposes according to the new operational structure.

[F-26] Nokia’s reportable segments represent the strategic business units that offer different products and services. The chief operating decision maker receives monthly financial information for these business units. Key financial performance measures of the reportable segments include primarily net sales and contribution/operating profit. Segment contribution for Smart Devices and Mobile Phones consists of net sales as well as its own, directly assigned costs and allocated costs but exclude major restructuring projects/programs and certain other items that are not directly related to the segments. Operating Profit is presented for Location & Commerce and Nokia Siemens Networks. Nokia evaluates the performance of its segments and allocates resources to them based on operating profit/contribution.

Smart Devices focuses on smartphones and smart devices and has profit-and-loss responsibility and end-to-end accountability for the full consumer experience, including product development, product management and product marketing. ([52] Nokia’s portfolio of smartphones covers price points ranging from around EUR 100 to more than EUR 500, excluding taxes and subsidies. During 2011, we shipped approximately 77.3 million smartphones.)

Mobile Phones focuses on mass market feature phones and related services and applications and has profit-and-loss responsibility and end-to-end accountability for the full consumer experience, including development, management and marketing of feature phone products, services and applications. ([54] Nokia’s portfolio of feature phones covers a wide range of price points from the Nokia 100, our most affordable device which costs about EUR 20, excluding taxes and subsidies, through to devices with more premium features costing upwards of EUR 100, excluding taxes and subsidies. During 2011, we shipped approximately 339.8 million feature phones.)

Devices & Services Other includes net sales of Vertu, spare parts and related cost of sales and operating expenses, as well as intellectual property related royalty income. Operating expenses of Devices & Services Other also include common research and development. Other income and expenses include major restructuring projects/programs related to the Devices & Services business as well as other unallocated items.

Location & Commerce develops a range of location-based products and services for consumers, as well as platform services and local commerce services for the Group’s feature phones and smartphones ([96] in support of our strategic goals) as well as ([96] a portfolio of products for the broader Internet ecosystem, including products for our direct competitors) for other device manufacturers, application developers, Internet service providers, merchants, and advertisers. Location & Commerce also continues to serve NAVTEQ’s existing customers both in terms of provision of content and as a business-to-business provider of map data ([56]providing comprehensive digital map information and related location-based content and services for mobile navigation devices, automotive navigation systems, Internet-based mapping applications and government and business solutions). Location & Commerce has profit and loss responsibility and end-to-end accountability for the full consumer experience.

Nokia Siemens Networks provides a portfolio of mobile, fixed and converged network technology, as well as professional services including managed services, consultancy and systems integration, deployment and maintenance to operators and service providers.

[F-71] Nokia Siemens Networks B.V., the ultimate parent of the Nokia Siemens Network group, is owned approximately 50% by each of Nokia and Siemens and consolidated by Nokia. Nokia effectively controls Nokia Siemens Networks as it has the ability to appoint key officers and the majority of the members of its Board of Directors, and accordingly, Nokia consolidated Nokia Siemens Networks.

Business and segment information:

2009 2010 2011
Devices & Services
Net sales (EUR in M) 27853 29134 23943
Operating profit (EUR in M) 3564 3540 884
Gross margin 33.10% 29.90% 27.70%
Operating margin -1% 12.20% 3.70%
Volume (units in M) 431.8 452.9 417.1
ASP (EUR) 64 64 57
Smart Devices
Net sales (EUR in M) 12649 14874 10820
Gross margin 37.20% 30.80% 23.70%
Contribution margin 11.40% 9.30% -3.80%
Volume (units in M) 67.8 103.6 77.3
ASP (EUR) 187 144 140
Mobile Phones
Net sales (EUR in M) 14644 13696 11930
Gross margin 28.50% 28.00% 26.10%
Contribution margin 15.30% 17.00% 12.40%
Volume (units in M) 364 349.2 339.8
ASP (EUR) 40 39 35
Location & Commerce
Net sales (EUR in M) 756 869 1091
Operating profit (EUR in M) -594 -663 -1526
Gross margin 82.70% 80.60% 80.40%
Operating margin -78.60% -76.30% -139.90%
Nokia Siemens Networks
Net sales (EUR in M) 12574 12661 14041
Operating profit (EUR in M) -1639 -686 -300
Gross margin 27.10% 26.80% 27.10%
Operating margin -58% -5.40% -2.10%
Nokia Group
Net sales (EUR in M) 40984 42446 38659
Operating profit (EUR in M) 1197 2070 -1073
Gross margin 32.40% 30.20% 29.30%
Operating margin 2.90% 4.90% -2.80%

The overall market situation and the related Nokia strategies and actions:

Devices & Services:

[87] In 2011, the global mobile device market benefited from continued strength in key growth markets, such as the Middle East and Africa, Greater China and Latin America and, according to our estimate, industry mobile device volumes increased by 11% during the year. Smartphones continued to capture the major part of the volume and value growth, as well as the public focus, in the mobile device market. We estimate that our mobile device volume market share was 26% in 2011, compared to an estimated 32% in 2010, with the decline primarily driven by market share losses in the smartphones segment.

In February 2011, we announced our new strategy for our Devices & Services business, which has three core elements.

First, in smartphones, we announced our partnership with Microsoft, discussed below, to bring together our respective complementary assets and expertise to build a new global mobile ecosystem for smartphones. Under the partnership, formalized in April 2011, we are adopting and licensing Windows Phone from Microsoft as our primary smartphone platform. We launched our first Nokia products with Windows Phone under the Lumia brand in October 2011.

Second, in feature phones, our strategy continues to be to leverage our innovation and strength in growth markets to connect the next billion people to the Internet and information. Through our investments in developing assets designed to bring a modern mobile experience – software, services and applications – we believe we have the opportunity to connect the “next billion” aspirational consumers around the world to the Internet and information, especially in key emerging markets.

Third, we believe we must also invest to take advantage of future technology disruptions and trends. Through ongoing research and development, we plan to explore and lead next-generation opportunities in devices, platforms and user experiences to support our industry position and longerterm financial performance.

The competitive landscape for that is the following:

[60] The mobile device market continues to undergo significant changes, most notably due to the broad convergence of the mobile telecommunications, computing, consumer electronics and Internet industries. With the traditional feature phone market continuing to mature, a major part of volume and value growth in the industry has been in smartphones offering access to the Internet. Additionally, other large handheld Internet-centric computing devices, such as tablets and e-readers, have emerged, trading off pocketability and some portability for larger screen sizes, but in many cases offering both cellular and non-cellular connectivity in the same way conventional mobile devices do. Due to their larger size, such devices are not replacing conventional mobile devices, but are generally purchased as a second device. Nevertheless, larger-screened Internet-enabled devices have captured a significant share of consumer spend across the broader market for mobile products and digital content and in different ways. For example, some competitors seek to offer hardware at a low price to the consumer with the aim of capturing value primarily through the sale of content.

The increasing demand for wireless access to the Internet has had a significant impact on the competitive landscape of the market for mobile products and digital content. Companies with roots in the mobile devices, computing, Internet and other industries are increasingly competing directly with one another, making for an intensely competitive market across all mobile products and services. At the same time, and particularly in the smartphone and tablets segments, success for hardware manufacturers is increasingly shaped by their ability to build, catalyze or be part of a competitive ecosystem, where different industry participants, such as hardware manufacturers, software providers, developers, publishers, entertainment providers, advertisers and e-commerce specialists are forming increasingly large communities of mutually beneficial partnerships in order to bring their offerings to the market. A vibrant ecosystem creates value for consumers, giving them access to a rich and broad range of user experiences. As a result, the competitive landscape is increasingly characterized in terms of a “war of ecosystems” rather than a battle between individual hardware manufacturers or products.

At the heart of the major ecosystems is the operating system and the development platform upon which devices are based and services built. In smartphones, our competitors are pursuing a wide range of strategies. Many device manufacturers are utilizing freely available operating systems, the development of which is not paid for from device sales revenue or software license fees. The availability of Google’s Android platform has made entry into and expansion in the smartphone market easier for a number of hardware manufacturers which have chosen to join Android’s ecosystem, especially at the mid-to-low range of the smartphone market. For example, some competitors’ offerings based on Android are available for purchase by consumers for below EUR 100, excluding taxes and subsidies, and thus address a portion of the market which has been traditionally dominated by feature phone offerings, including those offered by Nokia. Accordingly, lower-priced smartphones are increasingly reducing the addressable market and lowering the price points for feature phones.

In general, we believe product differentiation with Android is more challenging, leading to increased commoditization of these devices and the resulting downward pressure on pricing. In addition, there is uncertainty in relation to the intellectual property rights in the Android ecosystem, which we believe increases the risk of direct and indirect litigation for participants in that ecosystem. Google, HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung and Sony Ericsson are among competitors which have deployed the Android operating system on their smartphones. Samsung is among our strongest competitors, competing with us across a broad range of price points.

Other companies favor proprietary operating systems, including Apple, whose popular high-end iPhone models use the iOS operating system, and Research in Motion (RIM), which deploys Blackberry OS on its mobile devices. Both Apple and RIM have developed their own application stores, through which users of their products can access applications.

Apple, which has already gained a strong position in the market for high-end smartphones and tablets, has also used the strength of its ecosystem to further expand its offering of digital content through other interfaces such as television sets. Similarly, Google has sought to extend the Android ecosystem with its Google TV Internet-based television service.

Nokia currently offers smartphones based on the Symbian, MeeGo and Windows Phone operating systems, and we are transitioning to using Windows Phone as our primary smartphone platform. Users of Symbian-based Nokia products can access digital content and third-party applications through Nokia Store, while users of our Windows Phone devices can access the Microsoft-run Marketplace for digital content and third-party applications. The Windows Phone operating system is also being deployed on smartphones by others, including HTC and Samsung.

The significant momentum and market share gains of the global ecosystems around the Apple and Android platforms have increased the competitive barriers to additional entrants looking to build a competing global smartphone ecosystem, such as Nokia with the Windows Phone platform. At the same time, other ecosystems are being built which are attracting developers and consumers, and which may result in potential fragmentation among ecosystem participants and the inability of new ecosystems to gain sufficient competitive scale.

We also face intense competition in feature phones where a different type of ecosystem from that of smartphones is emerging involving very low-cost components and manufacturing processes, with speed to market and attractive pricing being critical success factors. In particular, the availability of complete mobile solutions chipsets from low-cost reference design chipset manufacturers has lowered the barriers of market entry and enabled the very rapid and low-cost production of feature phones by numerous manufacturers in China and India, which are gaining significant market share in emerging markets, as well as bringing some locally relevant innovations to market. Such manufacturers have also demonstrated that they have significantly lower gross margin expectations than we do.

We also face competition from vendors of unlicensed and counterfeit products with manufacturing facilities primarily centered around certain locations in Asia and other emerging markets which produce inexpensive devices with sometimes low quality and limited after-sales services that take advantage of commercially-available free software and other free or low-cost components, software and content. In addition, we compete with non-branded feature phone manufacturers, including mobile network operators, which offer mobile devices under their own brand, as well as providers of specific hardware and software layers within products and services at the level of those layers rather than solely at the level of complete products and services and their combinations. In the future, we may face competition from established Internet companies seeking to offer smartphones under their own brand.

Our competitors use a wide range of other strategies and tactics. Certain competitors choose to accept significantly lower profit margins than we are targeting. Certain competitors have chosen to focus on building products and services based on commercially available components and content, in some cases available at very low or no cost. Certain competitors have also benefited from favorable currency exchange rates. Further, certain competitors may benefit from support from the governments of their home countries and other measures which may have protectionist objectives.

Transition:

[88] Year 2011 was a year of transition for Nokia. Prior to the announcement of our partnership with Microsoft in February 2011 and the adoption of Windows Phone as our primary smartphone platform, the Symbian and MeeGo operating systems were our primary smartphone platforms. Following our announcement of the Microsoft partnership, we expected to sell approximately 150 million more Symbian devices in the years to come and to ship one MeeGo device. However, the demand for our Symbian devices began to deteriorate. The consequent decline in our Smart Devices net sales and profitability was a result of both a decline in our Symbian smartphone volume market share and pressure on pricing as competitors aggressively capitalized on our platform and product transition. Towards the end of 2011, the competitiveness of our Symbian devices continued to deteriorate as changing market conditions created increased pressure on Symbian, which further adversely affected our Smart Devices net sales, profitability, market share and brand perception. In certain markets, there has been an acceleration of the trend towards lower-priced smartphones with specifications that are different from Symbian’s traditional strengths, which has contributed to a faster decline in our Symbian volumes than we anticipated. We expect this trend to continue in 2012.

To endeavor to maximize the value of our Symbian asset going forward, we expect to continue to ship Symbian devices to specific regions and distribution channels, as well as to continue to provide software support to our Symbian customers, through 2016. The software support for our Symbian customers was outsourced to Accenture commencing from September 2011. As a result of the changing market conditions, combined with our increased focus on Nokia products with Windows Phone, we believe we will sell fewer Symbian devices than previously anticipated.

Towards the end of 2011, we launched the Nokia Lumia 800 and Nokia Lumia 710, our first smartphones based on the Windows Phone platform. During 2011, we also launched the Nokia N9, which was the outcome of efforts in our MeeGo program. Since the start of 2012, we have continued to bring the Lumia experience to several more geographies, including the United States, where we have launched the Nokia Lumia 900, the first LTE device designed specifically for the North American market, which is available exclusively through AT&T. In late February 2012, we announced our intention to bring the Lumia 900 to markets outside the United States and introduced the Lumia 610, our lowest cost Lumia smartphone to date.

During the first half of 2011, our mobile device market share decline was further negatively affected by weakness in our feature phone portfolio primarily due to a lack of a dual SIM offering. During the second half 2011, however, the competitiveness of our feature phones improved when we introduced several dual SIM devices, as well as the new Nokia Asha range of feature phones, which offers a more smartphone-like user experience. These new additions helped us recapture some market share in the feature phone segment.

Year 2012 is expected to continue to be a year of transition, during which our Devices & Services business will be subject to risks and uncertainties, as our Smart Devices business unit continues to transition from Symbian products to Nokia products with Windows Phone and our Mobile Phones business unit continues to bring more smartphone-like features and design to our feature phone portfolio. Those risks and uncertainties include, among others, continued deterioration in demand for our Symbian devices; the timing, ramp-up and demand for our new products, including our Lumia devices; further pressure on margins as competitors endeavor to capitalize on our platform and product transition; and uncertainty in the macroeconomic environment. Mainly due to these factors, we believe that it is not appropriate to provide annual financial targets for 2012.

Longer-term, we target:
• Devices & Services net sales to grow faster than the market, and
• Devices & Services operating margin to be 10% or more, excluding special items and purchase price accounting related items.

Partnership with Microsoft:

[F-26] In February 2011, Nokia announced a partnership with Microsoft to bring together the respective complementary assets and expertise of both parties to build a new global mobile ecosystem for smartphones. The partnership, under which Nokia is adopting and licensing Windows Phone from Microsoft as its primary smartphone platform, was formalized in April 2011.

The Group is paying Microsoft a software royalty fee to license the Windows Phone smartphone platform, which the Group records as royalty expense in its Smart Devices cost of goods sold. Nokia has a competitive software royalty structure, which includes annual minimum software royalty commitments and reflects the large volumes that the Group expects to ship, as well as a variety of other considerations related to engineering work to which both companies are committed. The Group expects that the adoption of Windows Phone will enable it to reduce significantly its operating expenses.

In recognition of the contributions that the Group is providing, the Group will receive quarterly platform support payments from Microsoft. ([90] In the fourth quarter of 2011, we received the first quarterly payment of USD 250 million (approximately EUR 180 million).) The received platform support payments are recognized over time as a benefit to our Smart Devices costs of goods sold. The total amount of the platform payments is expected to slightly exceed the total amount of the minimum software royalty commitments.

The Microsoft partnership also recognizes the value of intellectual property and puts in place mechanisms for exchanging intellectual property rights.

[89] We are contributing our expertise on hardware, design and language support to the Microsoft partnership, and plan to bring Nokia products with Windows Phone to a broad range of price points, market segments and geographies. We and Microsoft are closely collaborating on joint marketing initiatives and on a shared development roadmap on the future evolution of mobile products. The goal for both partners is that by bringing together our complementary assets in search, maps, locationbased services, e-commerce, social networking, entertainment, unified communications and advertising, we can jointly create an entirely new consumer proposition. We are also collaborating on our developer ecosystem activities to accelerate developer support for the Windows Phone platform on our mobile products. Although Microsoft will continue to license Windows Phones to other mobile manufacturers, the Microsoft partnership allows us to customize the Windows Phone platform with a view to differentiating Nokia smartphones from those of our competitors that also use the Windows Phone platform.

Specific initiatives include the following:

  • Contribution of our mapping, navigation, and certain location-based services to the Windows Phone ecosystem. We aim to build innovation on top of the Windows Phone platform in areas such as imaging, while contributing our expertise on hardware design and language support, to help drive the development of the Windows Phone platform. Microsoft will provide Bing search services across our mobile device portfolio and will contribute its strength in productivity tools, advertising, gaming, social media and a variety of other services. We believe that the combination of navigation with advertising and search services will enable better monetization of our navigation assets and create new forms of advertising revenue.
  • Joint developer outreach and application sourcing to support the creation of new local and global applications, including making Windows Phone developer registration free for all Nokia developers.
  • Planning towards opening a new Nokia-branded global application store that leverages the Windows Marketplace infrastructure. Developers would be able to publish and distribute applications to hundreds of millions of consumers that use Windows Phone, Symbian and Series 40 devices.
  • Contribution of our expertise in operator billing to ensure participants in the Windows Phone ecosystem can take advantage of our billing relationships with 112 operators in 36 markets.

Strategy for the trend: Continued Convergence of the Mobile Communications, Computing, Consumer Electronics and Internet Industries

[90] Value in the mobile handset industry continues to be increasingly driven by the convergence of the mobile communications, computing, consumer electronics and Internet industries. As consumer demand and interest for smartphone and tablets with access to a range of content has accelerated, new opportunities to create and capture value through innovative new service offerings and user experiences have arisen, with a greater emphasis and importance on software and ecosystem-driven innovation, rather than standalone devices. These opportunities seek to capitalize on various elements of ecosystems such as search services, maps, location-based services, e-commerce, social networking, entertainment, communications and advertising. Capturing these opportunities requires capabilities to manage the increased complexity and to provide an integrated user experience where all these various elements interact seamlessly either in one device or across multiple devices and electronic products. We expect these new opportunities to continue to emerge in 2012.

We believe that we are well-positioned with our new strategy and partnership with Microsoft, including our collective goal to build a new global mobile ecosystem for smartphones, to capture a number of these opportunities.

In Mobile Phones, we plan to leverage our innovation and strength in growth markets to connect the next billion people to the Internet and information. We also plan to drive third party innovation through working with our partners to engage in building strong, local ecosystems for our feature phones.

Strategy for the trend: Increasing Importance of Competing on an Ecosystem to Ecosystem Basis

[91] The increasing importance of ecosystems is, to a large degree, driven by the convergence trends mentioned above and the implications for the competencies and business model adjustments required for longer-term success. In the market for smartphones, we have seen significant momentum and emphasis on the creation and evolution of new ecosystems around major software platforms, including Apple’s iOS platform and Google’s Android platform, bringing together devices, software, applications and services. A notable recent development has been the increased affordability of devices based on the Android smartphone platform, which has enabled them to compete with a portion of the market that has traditionally been dominated by feature phone offerings. As Android is available free of charge and a significant part of the source code is available as open source software, entry and expansion in the smartphone market has become easier for a number of hardware manufacturers that have chosen to join Android’s ecosystem. Additionally, the success of an ecosystem and its ability to continue to grow may also depend on the support it lends to different kinds of devices. With multiple products available to suit different needs, such as mobile devices, tablets, computers and televisions, there is demand for greater seamless interaction between these devices. A number of vendors across different ecosystems are pursuing multi-screen strategies to capitalize on these opportunities.

Our partnership with Microsoft brings together complementary assets and competencies with the aim of creating a competitive smartphone ecosystem. We believe that together with Microsoft we will succeed in attracting the necessary elements for the creation of a successful ecosystem and that by extending the price points, market segments and geographies of our Windows Phone smartphones, we will be able to significantly strengthen the scale and attractiveness of that ecosystem to developers, operators and partners.

Strategy for the trend: Increased Pervasiveness of Smartphones and Smartphone-like Experiences Across the Price Spectrum

[91] During the past year, we saw the increasing availability of more affordable smartphones, particularly Android-based smartphones, connected devices and related services which were able to reach lower price points contributing to a decline in the average selling prices of smartphones in our industry.

This trend affects us in two ways.

First, it puts pressure on the price of our smartphones and potentially our profitability, as we need to price our smartphones competitively. We currently partially address this with our Symbian device offering in specific regions and distribution channels, and we plan to introduce and bring to markets new and more affordable Nokia products with Windows Phone in 2012, such as the Nokia Lumia 610 announced in February 2012.

Second, lower-priced smartphones put pressure on our higher-end feature phone offering from our Mobile Phones unit. We are addressing this with our planned introductions in 2012 of smarter, competitively priced feature phones with more modern user experiences, including software, services and application experiences. In support of our Mobile Phones business, we also plan to drive third party innovation through working with our partners to engage in building strong, local ecosystems.

Strategy for the trend: Increasing Challenges of Achieving Sustained Differentiation and Impact on Overall Industry Gross Margin Trends

[91] Although we expect the mobile device industry to continue to deliver attractive revenue growth prospects, we are less optimistic about the gross margin trends going forward. The creation and momentum of new ecosystems, especially from established Internet players with disruptive business models, has enabled handset vendors that do not have substantial software expertise or investment in software development to develop an increasingly broad and affordable range of smartphones and other connected devices that feature a certain user interface, application development and mobile service ecosystems. At the same time, this has significantly reduced the amount of differentiation in the user experience in the eyes of consumers. Our ability to achieve sustained differentiation with our mobile products is a key driver of consumer retention, net sales growth and margins. We believe that as it becomes increasingly difficult for many of our competitors to achieve sustained differentiation, overall industry gross margin trends may be depressed going forward.

Through our partnership with Microsoft and development of the Windows Phone ecosystem, we will focus more of our investments in areas where we believe we can differentiate and less on areas where we cannot, leveraging the assets and competencies of our ecosystem partners. Areas where we believe we can achieve sustained product differentiation and leadership include distinctive design with compelling hardware, leading camera and other sensor experiences and leading location-based products and services. Other ways for us to differentiate our products include using our localization capabilities, global reach, strong brand and marketing. We believe that our first Lumia devices reflect a number of these new and differentiated experiences on Windows Phone. We expect to continue to introduce new and more differentiated products from our Lumia product family in multiple markets throughout 2012.

In the Mobile Phones business, we believe our competitive advantages – including our scale, brand, quality, manufacturing and logistics, strategic sourcing and partnering, distribution, research and development and software platforms and intellectual property – continue to be important to our competitive position. Additionally, we plan to extend our Mobile Phones offerings and capabilities during 2012 in order to bring a modern mobile experience – software, services and applications – to aspirational consumers in key growth markets as part of our strategy to bring the Internet and information to the next billion people. At the same time, we plan to drive third party innovation through working with our partners to engage in building strong, local ecosystems.

Finally, we believe that we must invest in new projects to drive differentiation and take advantage of future technology disruptions and trends. Through ongoing research and development, we plan to explore and lead next-generation opportunities in devices, platforms and user experiences to support our industry position as well as our ability to further differentiate over the longer-term. For example, new web technologies such as those commonly referred to as HTML5 may lead to less operating system-centric ecosystems. It is important to be able to drive such industry developments, which we believe will define the future of our industry.

Strategy for the trend: Emergence of New Business Models

[92] We believe that the traditional industry monetization model – capturing the value of the overall experience through the sale of a mobile device – will continue to dominate in the near to medium term. However, we are also seeing the emergence of new indirect monetization models where the value is captured through indirect sources of revenue such as advertising revenue through applications rather than the actual sale of a device. These indirect monetization models could become more prominent in our industry in the longer-term. Accordingly, we believe that developing a range of indirect monetization opportunities, such as advertising-based business models, will be part of successful ecosystems over the coming years. Obtaining and analyzing a complex array of customer feedback, information on consumer usage patterns and other personal and consumer data over the largest possible user-base is essential in gaining greater consumer understanding. We believe this understanding is a key element in developing new monetization opportunities and generating new sources of revenue, as well as in facilitating future innovations, including the delivery of new and more relevant user experiences ahead of the competition.

The exploration of new revenue streams is a key element of our partnership with Microsoft. We are jointly developing new services with Microsoft to drive innovation and new sources of revenue from our ecosystem. We believe that our ability to understand the specific needs of different geographic markets and consumer segments and to localize services and applications appropriately will be a key competitive differentiator. To support this, in the coming years we plan to invest in local advertising platforms to further enhance and enrich our localized offerings. Supported by our scale, we believe that we have the opportunity to deliver more compelling and relevant local services and to build new monetization models for Nokia and the Windows Phone ecosystem.

Strategy for the trends in: Supply Chain, Distribution and Operator Relationships

[93] The industry in which we operate is one of the fastest growing and most innovative, with a broad range of industry participants contributing product and technological innovations. In particular, the role of component suppliers has grown in importance. At the same time, much of the value creation for consumers has shifted from hardware to software. Nevertheless, we believe that there continues to be substantial room to innovate in hardware. From that perspective and in order to deliver market-leading innovations and sustainable differentiation through hardware, it is critical to have good relationships with high quality suppliers. With good supplier relationships, allied with the strength of our world-class manufacturing and logistics system, we believe we are well-positioned to deliver high-quality hardware as well as to respond quickly to customer and consumer demand.

Amid rapid change in the industry, we have also seen new sourcing models emerge. Especially in smartphones, our competitors have shifted from traditional multi-sourcing strategies where you have multiple suppliers for each component, to more focused sourcing strategies where they integrate key strategic suppliers closer to their operations as well as use advance cash payments to secure supply for several quarters in advance in order to have more unique and differentiated components as well as more predictability in their sourcing. This means that we also need to look for new and more innovative ways of sourcing key components, particularly in our Smart Devices business.

Our own manufacturing network continues to be a valuable asset, especially in our high-volume Mobile Phones business. We realized, however, that we need to adjust our manufacturing to meet the lower overall demand for our products and increase our speed to market for our mobile products. In 2011 and in February 2012, we announced our plans to adjust our manufacturing capacity and renew our manufacturing strategy to focus product assembly primarily in Asia to better reflect how our global networks of customers, partners and suppliers have evolved. The changes included the closure of our manufacturing facility in Cluj, Romania at the end of 2011. We also announced planned changes at our facilities in Komárom, Hungary, Reynosa, Mexico and Salo, Finland. These three facilities are planned to focus on smartphone product and sales package customization, serving customers mainly in Europe and the Americas, while our smartphone assembly operations will be transferred to our facilities in AsiaBeijing, China and Masan, South Korea – where the majority of our component suppliers are based. With these adjustments to our manufacturing network, we are aiming to continue to generate meaningful benefits relative to our competitors.

As in any global consumer business, distribution continues to be an important asset in the mobile device industry. We believe the breadth of our global distribution network is one of our key competitive advantages. We have the industry’s largest distribution network with more than 850,000 points of sale globally. Compared to our competitors, we have a substantially larger distribution and care network, particularly in China, India and the Middle East and Africa.

During 2011, the importance of operator-driven distribution increased. Whereas in the past operators dominated distribution only in the large western markets in Europe and the United States, they have recently been growing their share of distribution in large growth markets such as China, a traditionally strong market for us. We have been historically more successful where our mobile products are sold to consumers in open distribution through non-operator parties. It is therefore increasingly important to not only have a large number of points of sale globally, but also to have good relationships with key operators in each region.

Strategically, we want to be the preferred ecosystem partner for operators. By creating a new global mobile ecosystem with Microsoft and focusing on driving operator data plan adoption in lower price points with our feature phone offering, we believe we will be able to create a greater balance for operators and provide attractive opportunities to share the economic benefits from services and applications sales compared to other competing ecosystems, thereby improving our long-standing relationships with operators around the world.

Strategy for the trends related to: Speed of Innovation, Product Development and Execution

[94] As the mobile communications industry continues to undergo significant changes, we believe that speed of innovation and product development are important drivers of competitive strength. For example, a number of our competitors have been able to successfully leverage their software expertise to continuously bring innovations to market at a pace faster than typical hardware cycles. This has placed increasing pressure on all industry participants to continue to shorten product creation cycles and to execute in a timely, effective and consistent manner.

In February 2011, we announced our new strategy, including changes to our operational structure, company leadership, decision-making, ways of working and competencies designed to accelerate our speed of execution in an intensely competitive environment. The changes to our ways of working fall into six categories:

  • globally accountable business units;
  • a revised services mission;
  • local empowerment;
  • simplified decision-making;
  • a performance-based culture with consistent behavior; and
  • a new leadership structure with new leadership principles.

We believe under the new operational structure and with these new ways of working we can deliver noticeable improvements to our speed of innovation, product development and execution of both our Smart Devices and Mobile Phones business units.

Strategy for the trends related to: More Active Licensing Strategies of Patents and Intellectual Property

[94] Success in our industry requires significant research and development investments, with intellectual property rights filed to protect those investments and related inventions. In recent years, we have seen new entrants in the industry as new ecosystems have lowered the barriers to entry. In 2011, we saw intensified and more active licensing and enforcement strategies of patents and intellectual property emerge through a series of legal disputes between several industry participants as patent holders sought to protect their intellectual property against infringements by new entrants. It is not only traditional industry participants that have sought to safeguard their intellectual property; non-manufacturing patent licensing entities owning relevant technology patents have also actively been enforcing their patents against new entrants. These companies’ sole business model is to buy patents from the innovators and to maximize the value from those patents. As a result, the industry’s focus on patents and intellectual property has increased significantly and patent portfolios have become increasingly valuable for industry participants. Increased activity has also created lucrative opportunities to monetize patents by selling them to others. We expect this trend to continue in 2012. We believe we are well-positioned to both protect our existing business as well as generate incremental value to our shareholders through our industry-leading patent portfolio.

We are a world leader in the development of mobile devices and mobile communications technologies, which is also demonstrated by our strong patent position. During the last two decades, we have invested more than EUR 45 billion in research and development and built one of the mobile device industry’s strongest and broadest intellectual property right portfolios, with over 10 000 patent families. In 2011, we continued to work hard to enforce our patents against unlawful infringement and realize the value of our intellectual property. Our 2011 initiatives included, among other things, the signing of a patent license agreement with Apple, which we expect will have a positive financial impact on our future business, as well as capitalizing on strong market conditions by divesting several hundred patent families in a series of transactions to non-manufacturing patent licensing entities. Despite such divestments, we have maintained the strength and size of our patent portfolio on a stable level of approximately 10 000 patent families.

Strategy for the trends related to: Uncertain Global Macroeconomic Environment

We are currently experiencing a time of great global macroeconomic uncertainty. This uncertainty can cause unprecedented and dramatic shifts in consumer behavior, which can have significant effects on the mobile device industry. These effects could include, for example, consumers reducing the amount they are willing to spend on mobile products, which would negatively affect industry average selling prices, or consumers postponing purchases of new products, which would negatively affect device replacement cycles. These types of shifts in consumer behavior could potentially have a material adverse effect on our net sales and profitability in 2012.

While negative to the industry overall, we believe that the impact of any dramatic shifts in consumer behavior could be mitigated to a certain extent by our global distribution network, geographically well diversified supply-chain, relatively fragmented customer space and the breadth of our offering, which covers a wide range of price points. Furthermore, during our ongoing transition to Windows Phone as our primary smartphone platform our financial position has continued to be relatively strong. We continuously monitor the strength of our financial position and assess its adequacy in different net sales and profitability scenarios.

Additionally, we have identified and implemented certain precautionary measures designed to limit the possible immediate direct negative consequences resulting from the potential deterioration of the economic situation within the eurozone.

Restructuring in accordance with all that:

[F-64] In April 2011, Nokia announced plans to reduce its global workforce by about 4 000 employees by the end of 2012, as well as plans to consolidate the company’s research and product development sites so that each site has a clear role and mission. In September 2011, Nokia announced plans to take further actions to align its workforce and operations, which includes reductions in Sales and Marketing and Corporate functions in line with Nokia’s earlier announcement in April 2011. The measures also include the closure of Nokia’s manufacturing facility in Cluj, Romania, which – together with adjustments to supply chain operations – has affected approximately 2 200 employees. As a result, Devices & Services recognized a restructuring provision of EUR 456 million in total.

In 2010, Devices & Services recognized restructuring provisions of EUR 85 million mainly related to changes in Symbian Smartphones and Services organizations as well as certain corporate functions that were expected to result in a reduction of up to 1 800 employees globally.

[96] The factors and trends discussed above influence our net sales and gross profit potential. In addition, operational efficiency and cost control are important factors affecting our profitability and competitiveness. We continuously assess our cost structure and prioritize our investments. Our objective remains to maintain our strong capital structure, focus on profitability and cash flow and invest appropriately to innovate and grow in key strategic areas.

We expect that the adoption of Windows Phone as our primary smartphone platform will enable us to reduce significantly our operating expenses. For example, the Microsoft partnership allows us to eliminate certain research and development investments, particularly in operating systems and services, which we expect will result in lower overall research and development expenditures over the longer-term in our Devices & Services business.

We announced in 2011 that we are targeting to reduce our Devices & Services operating expenses by more than EUR 1 billion for the full year 2013, compared to the Devices & Services operating expenses of EUR 5.35 billion for the full year 2010, excluding special items and purchase price accounting related items.

We have announced a number of planned changes to our operations during 2011 and 2012 in connection with the implementation of our new strategy in our Devices & Services business and the creation of our new Location & Commerce business. The planned changes include substantial personnel reductions, site and facility closures and reconfiguration of certain facilities.

Initially, we announced that we are focusing our restructuring work primarily on the research and development teams to ensure that we correctly allocate resources for the new strategy at appropriate cost levels. In addition, we agreed to outsource our Symbian software development and support activities to Accenture, which resulted in the transfer of approximately 2 300 employees to Accenture.

We later announced that we are accelerating structural change in other parts of the organization in order to ensure that we are responsive to the changing dynamics in our industry. This phase includes the alignment of our markets organization and other supporting functions. For sales, this includes a move to simplify our model based around four regions, twenty areas and additional local offices that serve individual countries or territories.

We also announced plans to adjust our manufacturing capacity and renew our manufacturing strategy to reflect how our global networks of customers, partners and suppliers have evolved, including the closure of our facility in Cluj, Romania, the review of our manufacturing operations in Komárom, Hungary, Reynosa, Mexico and Salo, Finland and the transfer of smartphone assembly operations to Beijing, China and Masan, South Korea.

With respect to combining NAVTEQ and our Devices & Services social location services operations to form our Location & Commerce business, we announced a plan to capture potential synergies and opportunities to increase effectiveness through automation. The planned changes in the Location & Commerce business are estimated to affect approximately 1 300 employees.

Since we outlined our new strategy, we have announced total planned employee reductions of approximately 11 500 employees, as well as the transfer of approximately 2 300 employees to Accenture as noted above.

The planned measures support the execution of our strategy and are expected to bring efficiencies and speed to the organization. In line with our values, we are offering employees affected by the planned reductions a comprehensive support program. We remain committed to supporting employees and the local communities through this difficult change.

As of December 31, 2011, we had recognized cumulative net charges in Devices & Services of EUR 797 million related to restructuring activities in 2011, which included restructuring charges and associated impairments. While the total extent of the restructuring activities is still to be determined, we currently anticipate cumulative charges in Devices & Services of around EUR 900 million before the end of 2012. We also believe total cash outflows related to our Devices & Services restructuring activities will be below the level of the cumulative charges related to these restructuring activities.

In the past, our cost structure has benefited from the cost of components eroding more rapidly than the price of our mobile products. Recently, however, component cost erosion has been generally slowing, a trend that adversely affected our profitability in 2010 and 2011, and may do so in the future.

The currency volatility of the Japanese yen and United States dollar against the euro continued to put pressure on our costs in 2011. During 2011, we were able to manage the currency volatility driven cost pressure with an appropriate level of hedging and by managing our sourcing towards more favorable currencies. Our currency exposure profiles have not changed significantly and continued currency volatility of the Japanese yen and US dollar against the euro may negatively affect us in the future.

Location & Commerce:

[97] Our Location & Commerce business aims to positively differentiate its digital map data and location-based offerings from those of our competitors and create competitive business models for our customers.

In the fourth quarter 2011, we conducted our annual impairment testing to assess if events or changes in circumstances indicated that the carrying amount of our goodwill may not be recoverable. As a result, we recorded a charge to operating profit of EUR 1.1 billion for the impairment of goodwill in our Location & Commerce business. The impairment charge was the result of an evaluation of the projected financial performance of our Location & Commerce business. This took into consideration the market dynamics in digital map data and related location-based content markets, including our estimate of the market moving long-term from fee-based towards advertising-based models especially in some more mature markets. It also reflected recently announced results and related competitive factors in the local search and advertising market resulting in lower estimated growth prospects from our location-based assets integrated with different advertising platforms. After consideration of all relevant factors, we reduced the net sales projections for Location & Commerce which, in turn, reduced projected profitability and cash flows.

Location & Commerce’s resources are primarily focused on the development of:

(i) content, which involves the mapping of the physical world and places such as roads and points of interest, as well as the collection of activity data generated and authorized for use by our users;

(ii) the platform, which adds functionality on top of the content and includes the development tools for us and others to create on top of it; and

(iii) applications built on the content and platform.

Our Devices & Services business is a key customer of Location & Commerce. Devices & Services purchases map and application licenses from Location & Commerce for its Nokia Maps service sold in combination with GPS enabled smartphones.

Competition:

[61] With respect to digital map data and related location-based content, several global and local companies, as well as governmental and quasi-governmental agencies, are making more map data with improving coverage and content, and high quality, available free of charge or at lower prices. For example, our Location & Commerce business competes with Google which uses an advertising-based model allowing consumers to use its map data and related services in their products free of charge. Google has continued to leverage Google Maps as a differentiator for Android, bringing certain new features and functionality to that platform. Apple has also sought to strengthen its location assets and capabilities through targeted acquisitions and organic growth.

Location & Commerce also competes with companies such as TomTom, which licenses its map data and where competition is focused on the quality of the map data and pricing, and Open Street Map, which is a community-generated open source map available to users free of charge. Aerial, satellite and other location-based imagery is also becoming increasingly available and competitors are offering location-based products and services with the map data to both business customers and consumers in order to differentiate their offerings.

Strategy for the trend: Location-Based Products and Services Proliferation

[97] A substantial majority of Location & Commerce net sales in 2011 came from the licensing of digital map data and related location-based content and services for use in mobile devices, in-vehicle navigation systems, Internet applications, geographical information system applications and other location-based products and services. Location & Commerce’s success depends upon the rate at which consumers and businesses use location-based products and services. In recent years, there has been a strong increase in the availability of such products and services, particularly in mobile devices and online application stores for such devices. Furthermore, as the use of the Internet through mobile devices has been growing rapidly, the anchor of the Internet is moving from the desktops to mobiles. This shift is making location-based content a key element of most Internet experiences. We expect this trend to continue, but we also expect that the level of quality required for these products and services and the ability to charge license fees for the use of map data incorporated into such products and services may vary significantly. By combining our NAVTEQ business with our Devices & Services social location services operations, we believe our Location & Commerce business will be better positioned to capture emerging business opportunities with a broader offering which is no longer limited to digital map data.

Strategy for the trend: Increasing Importance of Creating an Ecosystem around Location-Based Services Offering

[97] Creating a winning ecosystem around our Location & Commerce’s services offering will be critical for the success of this business. The longer-term success of the Location & Commerce business will be determined by our ability to attract strategic partners and developers to support our ecosystem. Location & Commerce is aiming to support its ecosystem by enabling strategic partners and independent developers to foster innovation on top of their location platform. We believe that making it possible for other vendors to innovate on top of Location & Commerce’s high quality location-based assets will further strengthen the overall experience and make our offering stronger and more attractive.

Strategy for the trend: Emergence of the Intelligent Sensor Network

[98] Mobile Internet devices are increasingly being enabled with a rich set of sensors such as a GPS, a camera and an accelerometer which enable interaction with the real world. This interaction also enables the collection of large volumes of rich data which, when combined with analytics, enable the development of increasingly sophisticated, contextually-aware devices and services. We believe the combination of NAVTEQ with our Devices & Services social location services operations will enable Location & Commerce to participate in this industry development and seize new opportunities to deliver new experiences that bridge the virtual with the real world.

Strategy for the trend: Price Pressure for Navigable Map Data Increasing

[98] Location & Commerce’s net sales are also affected by the highly competitive pricing environment. Google is offering turn-by-turn navigation in many countries to its business customers and consumers on certain mobile handsets at no charge to the consumer. While we expect these offerings will increase the adoption of location-based services in the mobile handset industry, we also expect they may lead to additional price pressure from Location & Commerce’s business customers, including handset manufacturers, navigation application developers, wireless carriers and personal navigation device (“PND”) manufacturers, which are seeking ways to offer lower-cost or free turn-by-turn navigation to consumers. Turn-by-turn navigation solutions that are free to consumers on mobile devices may also put pressure on automotive OEMs and automotive navigation system manufacturers to have lower cost navigation alternatives. This price pressure is expected to result in an increased focus on advertising revenue as a way to supplement or replace license fees for map data.

In response to the pricing pressure, Location & Commerce focuses on offering a digital map database with superior quality, detail and coverage; providing value-added services to its customers such as distribution and technical services; enhancing and extending its product offering by adding additional content to its map database, such as 3D landmarks; and providing business customers with alternative business models that are less onerous to the business customer than those provided by competitors. Location & Commerce’s future results will also depend on Location & Commerce’s ability to adapt its business models to generate increasing amounts of advertising revenues from its map and other location-based content.

We believe that Location & Commerce’s PND customers will continue to face competitive pressure from smartphones and other mobile devices that now offer navigation, but that PNDs continue to offer a viable option for consumers based on the functionality, user interface, quality and overall ease of use.

Strategy for the trend: Quality and Richness of Location-Based Content and Services Will Continue to Increase

[98] Location & Commerce’s profitability is also driven by Location & Commerce’s expenses related to the development of its database and expansion. Location & Commerce’s development costs are comprised primarily of the purchase and licensing of source maps, employee compensation and thirdparty fees related to the construction, maintenance and delivery of its database.

In order to remain competitive and notwithstanding the price pressure discussed above, Location & Commerce will need to continue to expand the geographic scope of its map data, maintain the quality of its existing map data and add an increasing amount of new location-based content and services, as well as using innovative ways like crowd sourcing to collect data. The trends for such location-based content and services include real-time updates to location information, more dynamic information, such as traffic, weather, events and parking availability, and imagery consistent with the real world. We expect that these requirements will cause Location & Commerce’s map development expenses to continue to grow, although a number of productivity initiatives are underway designed to improve the efficiency of our database collection processing and delivery. In addition, we will need to continue making investments in this fast paced and innovative location-based content and services industry, for instance through research and development, licensing arrangements, acquiring businesses and technologies, recruiting specialized expertise and partnering with third parties.

Restructuring in accordance with all that:

[F-64] In September 2011, Nokia announced a plan to concentrate the development efforts of the Location & Commerce business in Berlin, Germany and Boston and Chicago in the U.S., and other supporting sites and plans to close its operations in Bonn, Germany and Malvern, U.S. As a result, Location & Commerce recognized a restructuring provision of EUR 25 million.

Nokia Siemens Networks:

[99] Nokia Siemens Networks’ has a broad portfolio of products and services designed to address evolving needs of network operators from GSM to LTE wireless standards, a base of over 600 customers in over 150 countries serving over 2.5 billion subscribers and one of the largest services organizations in the telecommunications infrastructure industry. The company’s global customer base includes network operators such as Bharti Airtel, China Mobile, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom, Softbank, Telefonica O2, Verizon and Vodafone.

Geographical diversity provides Nokia Siemens Networks with opportunities in both emerging markets, which may experience rapid growth, and developed markets where it believes its technologically advanced products and services portfolio provides a competitive advantage, while the geographic diversity of its customer base reduces exposure to fluctuating economic conditions in individual markets.

Nokia Siemens Networks’ net sales depend on various developments in the global telecommunications infrastructure and related services market, such as network operator investments, the pricing environment and product mix. In developed markets, operator investments are primarily driven by capacity and coverage upgrades, which, in turn, are driven by greater usage of the networks primarily through the rapid growth in data usage. Those operators are targeting investments in technology and services that allow them to provide end users with fast and faultless network performance in the most efficient manner possible, allowing them to optimize their investment. Such developments are facilitated by the evolution of network technologies that promote greater efficiency and flexibility.

In addition, those operators are increasingly investing in software and services that provide them with the means to better manage end users on their network, and also allow them additional access to the value of the large amounts of subscriber data under their control. In emerging markets, the principal factors influencing operator investments are the continued growth in customer demand for telecommunications services, including data, as well as new subscriber growth. In many emerging markets, this continues to drive growth in network coverage and capacity requirements.

The telecommunications infrastructure market is characterized by intense competition and price erosion caused in part by the entry into the market of vendors from China, Huawei and ZTE, which have gained market share by leveraging their low cost advantage in tenders for customer contracts. In recent years, the technological capabilities of those vendors, particularly Huawei, has improved significantly, resulting in competition not only on price but also on quality.

The pricing environment remained intense in 2011. In particular, the wave of network modernization that has taken place, particularly in Europe but increasingly in other regions including Asia Pacific, has experienced some aggressive pricing as all vendors fight for market share.

Nokia Siemens Networks’ net sales are impacted by those pricing developments, which show some regional variation, and in particular by the balance between sales in developed and emerging markets. While price erosion is evident across most geographical markets, it continues to be particularly intense in a number of emerging markets where many operator customers have been subject to financial pressure, both through lack of availability of financing facilities during 2011 as well as profound pricing pressure in their domestic markets.

Pricing pressure is evident in the traditional products markets, in particular, where competitors may have products with similar technological capabilities, leading to commoditization in some areas. Nokia Siemens Networks’ ability to compete in those markets is determined by its ability to remain price competitive with its industry peers and it is therefore important for Nokia Siemens Networks to continue to reduce product costs to keep pace with price attrition. Nokia Siemens Networks continued to make progress in reducing product and procurement costs in 2011, and will need to continue to do so in order to provide its customers with high-quality products at competitive prices. There is currently less pricing sensitivity in the managed services market, where vendor selections are often largely determined by the level of trust and demonstrated capability in the field.

In November 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks articulated its regional strategy, identifying three markets, Japan, Korea and the United States, as its priority countries where it will target growth. The Middle East and Africa, where political, financial and competitive pressures have led to particular weakness in 2011, will be the focus of turnaround efforts. In the remaining regions, Latin America, China, Asia-Pacific, Canada and Europe, Nokia Siemens Networks goal will be to defend market share and find areas for future profitable growth.

Over recent years, the telecommunications infrastructure industry has entered a more mature phase characterized by the completion of the greenfield roll-outs of mobile and fixed network infrastructure across many markets, although this is further advanced in developed markets. Despite this, there is still a significant market for traditional network infrastructure products to meet coverage and capacity requirements, even as older technologies such as 2G are supplanted by 3G and LTE. As growth in traditional network products sales slows, there is an emphasis on the provision of network upgrades, often through software, as well as applications, such as billing, charging and subscriber management, and services, particularly the outsourcing of non-core activities to companies

The competitive landscape for that is the following:

[70] Conditions in the market for mobile and fixed network infrastructure and related services improved, but remained challenging and intensely competitive in 2011. The market continued to be characterized by mixed trends as growth in mobile broadband and services was offset by equipment price erosion, a maturing of legacy industry technology and intense price competition.

Industry participants have changed significantly in recent years. Substantial industry consolidation occurred in 2007 with the emergence of three major European vendors: Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Networks. The break-up of Nortel occurred in 2009 when it entered bankruptcy protection and many parts of the business were sold, including the wireless carrier unit, Metro Ethernet Networks, and its GSM business. In January 2011, Motorola Solutions completed its separation from Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc. In April 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks acquired the majority of Motorola Solutions’ wireless network infrastructure assets.

During 2011, the competitive environment in the telecommunications infrastructure market was characterized by continued overall growth in global network operators’ capital expenditures in Euro terms, mainly attributable to the Japanese, Chinese, APAC, North East Europe and Latin American markets. Growth in capital expenditures declined in the Middle East and remained relatively unchanged in the European and North American markets in Euro terms in 2011. Increased smart phone usage drove increased investments in the United States and European wireless markets. The vendors from China, Huawei and ZTE, continued to grow their market share but at a slower pace than in previous years and continued to challenge Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Networks. Nokia Siemens Networks’ ability to compete with low-cost vendors primarily depends on its ability to be price competitive and, in certain circumstances, its ability to provide or facilitate vendor financing. In recent years, the technological capabilities of the Chinese vendors, particularly Huawei, has improved significantly, resulting in competition not only on price but also on quality. In addition to the major infrastructure providers, Nokia Siemens Networks also competes with Cisco and NEC.

In the Networks Systems business, the decline of 2G (GSM, CDMA) continued in 2011, whereas investments in 3G continued and increased worldwide. Also, fourth generation (4G) LTE trials and pilots continued strongly as operators continued to merge towards next generation LTE and all-IP networks. Within the LTE segment, leading vendors are competing based on factors including technology innovation, network typology and less complex network architectures as well as integration towards all-IP networks.

Growth in wireline and wireless broadband services sped up optical and wireless network upgrades in developed markets. In addition, the related investment in mobile backhaul networks continued to increase due to data traffic increases in the operator networks.

In services, which remained the fastest growing part of the industry, competition is generally based on a vendor’s ability to identify and solve customer problems rather than their ability to supply equipment at a competitive price. Competition in services is from both traditional vendors such as Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson and Huawei, as well as non-traditional telecommunications entities and system integrators, such as Accenture and IBM. In addition to these companies, there are also local service companies competing, which have a narrower scope in terms of served regions and business areas.

Nokia Siemens Networks’ Business Solutions business unit assists network operators in transforming their business, processes and systems to enhance the customer experience, drive new revenue and improve operational efficiency to enable them to successfully address the challenges and opportunities of mobile broadband, smartphones, tablet computers, multi-play offerings, service innovation and new growth areas. In this area, Nokia Siemens Networks faces competition also from information technology and software businesses like Accenture, Amdocs, HP, IBM and Oracle, which are active in areas such as the service delivery platform market and business insight and analysis services.

Certain competitors may receive governmental support allowing them to offer products and services at substantially lower prices. Further, in many regions restricted access to capital has caused network operators to reduce capital expenditure and has produced a stronger demand for vendor financing. Certain of Nokia Siemens Networks’ competitors may have stronger customer financing possibilities due to internal policies or government support. While the amount of financing Nokia Siemens Networks provided directly to its customers in 2011 remained at approximately the same level as in 2010, as a strategic market requirement it plans to offer this financing option only to a limited number of customers and primarily to arrange and facilitate such financing with the support of export credit or guarantee agencies.

Strategy for the trends in: Mobility and Data Usage

[100] Over recent years the two most evident trends in the telecommunications market – the rise in use of  mobile services and the exponential increase in data traffic – have converged. One result is that services once regarded as available primarily, if not exclusively, through fixed or wireline network are increasingly in demand from wireless networks also.

Alongside traditional voice and data services, such as text messaging, end-users access a wealth of media services through communications networks, including email and other business data; entertainment services, including games and music; visual media, including high definition films and television programming; and social media sites. End-users increasingly expect that such services are available to them everywhere, through both mobile and fixed networks, and a wealth of new devices, optimized to allow them to do so, have become available including tablet computers, highly sophisticated multimedia smartphones, mobile broadband data dongles, set-top boxes and mobile and fixed line telephones.

The widespread availability of devices has been matched by a proliferation of products and services in the market that both meet and feed end-user demand. These continue to drive dramatic increases in data traffic and signaling through both mobile access and transport networks that carry the potential to cause network congestion and complexity. During 2011, this increase continued to gain momentum as more users moved towards smartphones and tablets and even more devices that require constant connectivity were introduced to the market.

While the growth in traffic is clear, it has not been met by corresponding growth in operators’ revenues from data traffic, where growth appears to be slowing. This presents operators with a challenge: to cope with the growing traffic load within networks, it is fundamental that operators continue to invest in their networks, but within the financial constraints that their current business models dictate.

This means that while the addition of capacity, speed and coverage is crucial, it is critical that networks are built efficiently and effectively in a manner that optimizes capital investment and delivers networks with architecture sufficiently flexible to cope with evolving requirements.

During 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks recognized the centrality of mobile networks to the future development of telecommunications and announced that it would place mobile broadband at the heart of its strategy, articulating an ambition to provide the world’s most efficient mobile networks, the intelligence to maximize the value of those networks and the services capability to make all elements work together seamlessly. Nokia Siemens Networks said it expected to increase investment in mobile broadband.

Also during 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks launched the network architecture designed to equip operators to meet the challenges they are facing. “Liquid Net” architecture provides flexibility across networks to adapt to changing customer needs instantly, using existing resources more efficiently. This optimizes capital investment and allows operators to seek new revenue opportunities. Liquid Net uses automated, self-adapting broadband optimization to remain constantly aware of the network’s operational status, as well as the services and content being consumed, to ensure the best user experience. Liquid Net consists of three areas: Liquid Radio, Liquid Core and Liquid Transport.

Strategy for the trends in: Managed Services and Outsourcing

[101] There has been an acceleration in the development of the managed services market as operators increasingly look to outsource network management to infrastructure vendors. The primary driver for this trend is that managed services providers are able to offer economies of scale in network management that allow the vendor to manage such contracts profitably while operators can reduce the cost of network management. The outsourcing trend is also underpinned by many operators taking the view that network management is no longer either a core competence or requirement of their business and are increasingly confident they can find greater expertise by outsourcing this activity to a trusted partner that can also improve quality and reliability in the network.

Nokia Siemens Networks believes that this trend will continue and that it could in future be driven by financial imperatives of its customers facing slowing revenue growth but a continuing requirement for capital investment in their networks, a dynamic that has the potential to threaten their profitability levels. This results in some operators aiming to control their operating expenditure. In those circumstances, the outsourcing of the management of their network to infrastructure vendors, such as Nokia Siemens Networks, can be an attractive option.

In emerging markets, such as Africa and India, price pressure and competition in the end-user market has increased the financial pressure on many operators, which in turn has resulted in a similar trend as operators have looked to control and cut costs through outsourcing network management.

The trend towards network management outsourcing is evident in every region of the world and has intensified. Nokia Siemens Networks believes that this trend generates its own momentum in the market as vendors can increasingly demonstrate their capabilities with reference accounts and operators are exposed to their competitors taking steps that can enhance profitability and improve network quality and reliability.

In the announcement of its new strategy in November 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks reaffirmed its commitment to services, and will continue to aim to support mobile operators with high end services and will seek to maximize the potential of its global delivery model, with its global network solution centers in Portugal and India which offer the benefits of scale and efficiencies both to Nokia Siemens Networks and its customers.

Strategy for the trends in: Customer Experience Management

As operators in many markets see the growth of net new subscribers slowing or even stopping, they are increasingly focused on leveraging the value of the subscribers they have. As the acquisition of new subscribers to networks in such markets can be both difficult and expensive, customers look to limit “churn”, where end users transfer to a rival service provider, as well as to increase the revenue derived from each user through the addition of value-added services, such as access to media and entertainment and social networking services. This often requires that operators invest in software and solutions that allow customers to enjoy an improved experience. One of the key foundations for this improved end-user experience is understanding an end user’s behavior and preferences, which in turn allows the operator to tailor service offerings to the individual consumer. This not only includes services and applications, but also bespoke billing platforms and identity management solutions.

Nokia Siemens Networks continues to develop and enhance its offerings in this area, and in November 2011 announced that its Customer Experience Management unit would be a lead business area in its new strategy. Nokia Siemens Networks believes it has the industry’s leading subscriber database management platform, complemented by flexible billing and charging platforms and other software and solutions that provide its customers with the tools, flexibility and agility required to respond to a rapidly changing end-user market. Nokia Siemens Networks also provides business process and consulting services that help to lead its customers through business transformation opportunities.

Strategy related to: Motorola Solutions Acquisition

[102] In April 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks acquired the majority of the wireless network infrastructure assets of Motorola Solutions for a total consideration of EUR 642 million. The acquisition increased Nokia Siemens Networks’ global presence and expanded its position and product offerings in key markets. See Item 4B. “Business Overview – Nokia Siemens Networks – Motorola Solutions Acquisition.”

Trasition to a: New Strategy and [the corresponding] Restructuring Program

[103] Nokia Siemens Networks’ focus is on becoming the strongest, most innovative and highest quality mobile broadband and services business in the world. Rather than targeting the full spectrum of telecommunications equipment and services, Nokia Siemens Networks is the first of the telecommunications companies to refocus on providing the most efficient mobile networks, the intelligence that maximizes the value of those networks and the services that make it all work seamlessly.

In November 2011, Nokia Siemens Networks announced a new strategy, including changes to its organizational structure and an extensive restructuring program, aimed at maintaining and developing Nokia Siemens Networks, position as one of the leaders in mobile broadband and services and improving its competitiveness and profitability. Nokia Siemens Networks expects substantial charges related to this restructuring program in 2012. See Item 4B. “Business Overview—Nokia Siemens Networks—New Strategy and Restructuring Program” for a description of the main elements of the new strategy.

Year 2012 will be a year of transition for Nokia Siemens Networks as it implements its new strategy and restructuring program. Accordingly, Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks believe it is currently not appropriate to provide annual targets for Nokia Siemens Networks for 2012. Additionally, the macroeconomic environment is making it increasingly difficult to estimate the outlook for 2012.

Longer-term, Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks target Nokia Siemens Networks’ operating margin to be between 5% and 10%, excluding special items and purchase price accounting related items.

Nokia Siemens Networks targets to reduce its annualized operating expenses and production overheads, excluding special items and purchase price accounting related items, by EUR 1 billion by the end of 2013, compared to the end of 2011. While these savings are expected to come largely from organizational streamlining, the company will also target areas such as real estate, information technology, product and service procurement costs, overall general and administrative expenses and a significant reduction of suppliers in order to further lower costs and improve quality.

Nokia Siemens Networks plans to reduce its global workforce by approximately 17 000 by the end of 2013. These planned reductions are designed to align the company’s workforce with its new strategy as part of a range of productivity and efficiency measures. These planned measures are expected to include elimination of the company’s matrix organizational structure, site consolidation, transfer of activities to global delivery centers, consolidation of certain central functions, cost synergies from the integration of Motorola’s wireless assets, efficiencies in service operations and company-wide process simplification.

Nokia Siemens Networks has begun the process of engaging with employee representatives in accordance with country-specific legal requirements to find socially responsible means to address these reduction needs. Nokia Siemens Networks will continue to share information in affected countries as the process proceeds. In order to reduce the impact of the planned reductions, Nokia Siemens Networks intends to launch locally led programs at the most affected sites to provide re-training and re-employment support.

MWC 2012 day 1 news [Feb 27, 2012]: Samsung and Nokia

 

Samsung had a number of enhanced GALAXY products (see them in the “Details for Samsung” section below). The really strong message from innovation point of view from them has, however, been (considered by them as “hidden gems”):
Samsung Mobile – Beyond Product [ YouTube Channel]

Tour the Samsung Mobile booth at Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona. Find out more about our new innovations, from AllShare Play and Control through Smart Driving and Smart School to NFC mobile payments.

UPDATE: for Nokia the major competition is the overall Android ecosystem, and not only in the proper smartphone market as:
– repeatedly stressed by Stephen Elop, the CEO of Nokia:

Our number-one focus is competing with Android. [see here and here]

The principal competition is Android, and then Apple. [see here]

– indicated in relevant excerpts from the Nokia 2011 fiscal year report [March 8, 2012] as:

Market overview

… Today, however, the distinction between these two classes of products is blurring. Increasingly, basic feature phone models, supported by innovations in both hardware and software, are also providing people with the opportunity to access the Internet and applications and, on the whole, offering them a more smartphone-like experience.

Whether smartphones or feature phones, mobile devices geared for Internet access and their accompanying Internet data plans are also becoming increasingly affordable and, consequently, they are becoming attractive to a broader range of consumer groups and geographic markets. A notable recent development has been the increased affordability of devices based on the Android platform, which has enabled some vendors to offer smartphones for below EUR 100, excluding taxes and subsidies, and thus address a portion of the market which has been dominated by more basic feature phone offerings.

….

Competition

…  some competitors’ offerings based on Android are available for purchase by consumers for below EUR 100, excluding taxes and subsidies, and thus address a portion of the market which has been traditionally dominated by feature phone offerings, including those offered by Nokia. Accordingly, lower-priced smartphones are increasingly reducing the addressable market and lowering the price points for feature phone. …

Principal Factors & Trends Affecting our Results of Operations

Devices & Service

Increased Pervasiveness of Smartphones and Smartphone-like Experiences Across the Price Spectrum

During the past year, we saw the increasing availability of more affordable smartphones, particularly Android-based smartphones, connected devices and related services which were able to reach lower price points contributing to a decline in the average selling prices of smartphones in our industry.

This trend affects us in two ways. First, it puts pressure on the price of our smartphones and potentially our profitability, as we need to price our smartphones competitively. We currently partially address this with our Symbian device offering in specific regions and distribution channels, and we plan to introduce and bring to markets new and more affordable Nokia products with Windows Phone in 2012, such as the Nokia Lumia 610 announced in February 2012. Second, lower-priced smartphones put pressure on our higher-end feature phone offering from our Mobile Phones unit. We are addressing this with our planned introductions in 2012 ofsmarter, competitively priced feature phones with more modern user experiences, including software, services and application experiences. In support of our Mobile Phones business, we also plan to drive third party innovation through working with our partners to engage in building strong, local ecosystems.

Full information is in the Nokia’s strategy for “the next billion” based on software and web optimization with super low-cost 2.5/2.75G SoCs [Feb 14 – March 8, 2012] post on this blog.

END OF UPDATE

For Nokia, accordingly, a number of innovations have already been introduced on the MWC 2012, from the hardware level up to the services which surround all that. So for Nokia I will provide a video-based overview here well before going into the “Details for Nokia” section in the very end:

Nokia Press Conference Highlights from MWC 2012 [ YouTube channel]

Key points: Nokia Lumia 610 is announced. Award-winning Nokia Lumia 900 will become available in various markets outside the US. Nokia PureView elevates industry standard in smartphone imaging. New Asha feature phones and services grow increasingly ‘smarter’.

Nokia Lumia 610 Hands-On Video [ YouTube channel]

The funky Nokia Lumia 610 http://nokia.ly/AztJvZ is the most affordable Lumia phone yet, but it delivers everything you need in a smartphone. The People Hub pulls family and friends’ contact details in one place, along with Facebook and Twitter feeds. A choice of colours, with metallic trim, makes the phone an individual style statement. [$254 (€189). Has a 3.7” 800 x 480 WVGA LCD display.]

The Windows Phone Xbox tie-in and 5-megapixel camera add to the funky package. And Nokia Music, with Mix Radio (availability may vary by market), Nokia Maps, Nokia Drive, Nokia Transport and Nokia Reading – make this phone unbeatable value.

UPDATE: the Nokia Lumia 610 won Tom’s Hardware Best in show and Best Budget Smartphone from Laptop. See here.

Introducing the White Nokia Lumia 900 – Live Large [ YouTube channel]

Meet the new Nokia Lumia 900 with Windows Phone http://nokia.ly/zoyq6L Find out how fast amazing can be. And social. And beautiful. With its award winning design including front facing camera and Live Tiles, keeping in touch with friends, and the entire Internet, has never been so easy. [$645 (€480). Has a 4.3” 800 x 480 WVGA AMOLED ClearBlack display with Gorilla Glass.]

Experience The Amazing Everyday.

First Look at Nokia Reading on Nokia Lumia [ YouTube channel]

In this hands on video, Rhidian from Nokia talks about Nokia Reading, a premium e-book and audio experience service announced at Mobile World Congress 2012, and shows how it works on Nokia Lumia.

Nokia Reading will be available for Nokia Lumia handsets from April and will first launch in six markets (UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Russia) with more to follow.

UPDATE: Nokia Reading: Get gripped by a great book [Nokia Coversations blog, Feb 28, 2012]

Nokia Reading follows the same simple and elegant panorama design we’ve become used to with other services, delivering the whole experience through a beautifully designed “reading hub.”

Nokia is working with some of the world’s biggest publishers, including Penguin and Hachette, and Pearson to launch a world class e-book and audiobook experience that’s been designed specifically for the Nokia Lumia.

Using a single, simple app you can choose your own favourite authors, or select bestselling novels and the top local books in your own language. If you’re not sure that you’ll like a book, Nokia Reading lets you browse some sample pages before you buy. Or you can download and read one of the thousands of classic works of literature that will be available for free.

Once you have chosen a book, large, clear, smartphone screens like those on the Nokia Lumia make reading an enjoyable experience – and you can switch to ‘night mode,’ change the font or adjust brightness, if your eyes get tired in the evening. It’s also great on an underground train or plane, because you can read everything offline after downloading beforehand over WiFi or mobile network

In coming months you’ll also be able to create a personalized magazine page (called “news stream”) that updates content across the most popular categories, and adds web content from your chosen sites.

Nokia 808 PureView – The next breakthrough in photography [ YouTube channel]

The game changer! Nokia 808 PureView http://nokia.ly/xz6mhS takes every bit of image goodness captured by a 41MP sensor and Carl Zeiss lens and turns it into beautifully detailed images and Full HD videos. Be ready to shoot and share with friends in an instant. [$605 (€450). Has a 4” 640 x 360  16:9 nHD AMOLED display.]

The Nokia 808 PureView also features exclusive Dolby Headphone technology, transforming stereo content into a personal surround sound experience over any headphones and Dolby Digital Plus for 5.1 channel surround sound playback.

UPDATE: Zooming in on Nokia PureView [article on the Nokia Conversations‎ blog, Feb 29, 2012]: meet the brains behind Nokia PureView Eero Salmelin and Juha Alakarhu, and also learn the history of this 5 years long journey that lead to the delivery on MWC 2012

UPDATE: Nokia 808 PureView partner makes it unbeatable [Nokia Conversations blog, March 1, 2012]

Dolby reveals audio secret of new phone’s success

Taking pride of place at their stand, the world’s best camera phone owes much to Dolby technologies for helping to make it an HD mobile entertainment device.

For the PureView is also about pure audio thanks to its high-definition Dolby Digital Plus 5.1-channel surround sound which plays on HD TVs, and home theatre systems, and when combined with Dolby Headphone technology – also built into the PureView – provides a personal 5.1 surround experience over any headphones.

Nokia is also bringing the Dolby experience to other smartphones with Nokia Belle Feature Pack 1 software upgrade for the Nokia 700, Nokia 701, and Nokia 603, also displayed on the Dolby stand.

Mobile Sales Director Shawn Richards talked us through the tech on a Nokia 700 with a demo from Batman movie The Dark Knight.

He explained that the Dolby Headphone upgrade transforms stereo content into a personal surround sound.

“You get a more natural, engaging, and authentic sound,” he said. “Good audio is even more important when you are watching a movie on a small screen. And Dolby Headphone creates a totally immersive feel.”

UPDATE: Nokia 808 Pureview – Best New Mobile Handset, Device or Tablet at Mobile World Congress 2012 [ YouTube channel, March 1, 2012]

Nokia 808 PureView wins top MWC award!
Our awesome camera phone scoops the top award from Mobile World Congress 2012 judges.

UPDATE: Damian Dinning explains Nokia PureView technology [ YouTube channel, Feb 29, 2012]

Nokia’s imaging expert Damian Dinning explains the breakthrough camera technology behind Nokia 808 PureView.

You could also check out the gorgeous photos taken with Nokia 808 PureView from the flickr.

UPDATE: Nokia PureView Q&A with Damian Dinning [interview on the Nokia Conversations‎ blog, March 1, 2012]

Nokia Stereo Bluetooth Headset BH-221 – See what you hear [ YouTube channel]

The new Nokia Stereo Bluetooth Headset BH-221 comes with an integrated FM radio and OLED display. It as excellent audio quality and NFC for easy pairing with your phone. Learn more at: www.accessories.nokia.com

Nokia Asha 302: Meet the designer [ YouTube channel]

Nokia Asha 302 http://nokia.ly/xXK4kV was designed with one simple goal in mind – to design the best looking QWERTY phone for today’s urban professionals. The metallic touch points, bold and sophisticated colors and smooth edges help users stand out and project success giving the phone a great premium feel. [$128 (€95). Has a 2.4” 320 x 240  QVGA TFT display.]

UPDATE: The Nokia C3-00 won Best Feature Phone or Entry Level Phone at the GSMA Awards 2012 in Barcelona. Blanca Juti, VP for Mobile Phones Product Marketing said to Nokia Conversations after collecting the prize: “It’s great for our products going forward, because the Nokia Asha 302 we launched yesterday is pretty much the successor to C3 which has had an amazing run in the market.” See here.

Nokia Asha 302: Premium All Round QWERTY [ YouTube channel]

Nokia Asha 302 http://nokia.ly/x5m2zm is a QWERTY phone with great value for money. It is packed with a 1 Ghz processor and is great for social networking, Email, Instant messaging, supports Mail for Exchange and has a premium design with stunning looks.

Nokia Asha 203: Simply touch, connect and play [ YouTube channel]

The Nokia Asha 203 http://nokia.ly/x78ZBe is a touch phone with a traditional keypad, offering fast and affordable access to the internet, easy access to email and social networks as well as a 40 EA games gift offering. [$81 (€60). Has a 2.4” QVGA display.]

Nokia Asha 202 Dual SIM: Simply touch, connect and play [ YouTube channel]

The Nokia Asha 202 http://nokia.ly/yOGbDA is a touch phone with a traditional keypad, offering fast and affordable access to the internet, easy access to email and social networks as well as a 40 EA games gift offering. Plus it comes with Easy Swap Dual SIM.  [$81 (€60). Has a 2.4” QVGA display.]

After exactly a year from the announcement of their new strategic set-up and direction it is quite obvious from all that above that Nokia is well on to realizing the corresponding transition. In fact they are redefining themselves which is well described by this video just published 2 days before the start of MWC 2012:

The New Essence of Nokia  [ YouTube channel]

We believe that everybody can have a richer, fuller life every day, everywhere. That means upgrading an ordinary moment to an exciting one or finding an unexpected experience to share with others. Intuitively, fast and easy. This is Nokia’s new mantra, this is the new essence of Nokia.

I see this overall brand message fitting rather well with their new and enhanced portfolio as you could judge for yourself from the above video presentations. In this way they have proceeded quite well from the disastrous situation they were a year ago, and which had been described quite extensively in the following post on this blog: Be aware of ZTE et al. and white-box (Shanzhai) vendors: Wake up call now for Nokia, soon for Microsoft, Intel, RIM and even Apple! [Feb 21 – March 25, 2011].


 Details for Samsung

This is the first hands-on video of GALAXY Beam from the Mobile World Congress 2012. GALAXY Beam is Samsung’s new projector smartphone that allows you to display and share multimedia content or business information instantly no matter where you are. For more information: http://www.samsungmobilepress.com/2012/02/26/GALAXY-Beam
MobileBurn.com – Samsung had relatively few things to announce at MWC 2012 this year, but one of them was the Galaxy Note 10.1, a larger version of the original Galaxy Note. The Note 10.1 uses the Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1) as its design inspiration (it looks nearly identical), but it adds S Pen capabilities to draw and notate on the screen. The Note 10.1 is powered by a dual-core, 1.4GHz processor and runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich with Samsung’s TouchWiz enhancements. More info: http://www.mobileburn.com/18681/gallery/samsung-galaxy-note-101-live-impressions

Details for Nokia

All the launches: Nokia at Mobile World Congress [Nokia Conversations‎ blog]

BARCELONA, Spain – Nokia announces six new phones and an array of new and updated services, advancing its new strategy and setting the pace for 2012.

Here’s our star-studded line-up for Barcelona 2012.

Nokia Lumia 610

The Nokia Lumia 610 is our most affordable Windows Phone to date – and the fourth we’ve brought to market. It’s aimed at young people who want access to a smartphone experience at the right price. Offering access to social networking, games, Nokia Maps and navigation, web-browsing and Nokia Music, the Lumia 610 comes in four bright colours. It will cost just €189 [$254] before taxes and subsidies, and starts shipping in April.

Nokia Lumia 900

First announced in January for AT&T’s LTE network in the US, the Nokia Lumia 900 will now be available worldwide in an HSPA+ edition. The Dual Carrier HSPA phone will allow for downloads up 42.2 Mbps. With a 4.3-inch ClearBlack AMOLED display, mobile media never looked so good, while an upgraded battery means there’s no compromise on longevity.

[Lumia 900 [DC-HSPA variant] $645 (€480) according to the press release]

Read the full story

which one is your favourite

Nokia 808 PureView

The Nokia 808 PureView extends our leadership in camera phones, with an amazing 41-megapixel sensor, Carl Zeiss optics and brand new pixel over-sampling technology. This means pin-sharp pictures, great low-light performance, yet with the ability to save your images in a suitable file size for social media, MMS and email. Also watch out for full 1080p video recording and exclusive Dolby Headphone technology to enrich the sound of any stereo content.
[The Nokia 808 PureView has a current price of €450 [$605]. It will be hitting stores in Q2 2012. – according to a press report]

Read the full story

Nokia Asha 302, 202 and 203

We’re also introducing three new Nokia Asha mobile phones with new capabilities to bring them to smarter heights than ever. Aimed at urban consumers across the world, the Nokia Asha 302, 202 and 203 offer more than ever in terms of work and play. The Asha 302 is a QWERTY phone with support for Microsoft Exchange synchronisation, a first for Series 40 phones. The Asha 202 and 203 bring touch screens to a lower price point than ever and come with a massive entertainment bundle.
[Asha 202/203 $81 (€60), Asha 302 $128 (€95) according to the press release]

Read the full story 

New-Capabilities

Super Services

Not satisfied with six new phones, there’s a whole raft of new and improved services. Nokia Drive for Windows Phone will now offer full, offline maps and turn-by-turn navigation. In addition, there’s Nokia Reading, the best e-book experience for Nokia Lumia. And Nokia Life bringing life skills, parenting, education, agriculture and entertainment services to Series 30 and 50 phones in India, China, Indonesia and Nigeria.

Read the full story

Click through for all the in-depth stories from today’s press conference. We’ll be bringing you even more detail, hands-on experiences and interviews with the brains behind these beauties over the course of the week.

Nokia 808 PureView

Remember that Nokia PureView tease from a few days ago? Well, suddenly it all makes sense. We are indeed looking at an imaging flagship phone and a true successor to the N8. It’s called the 808 PureView and it’s expected to reach Europe in the next quarter for a price of 450 Euros. Before we move on to its craziest feature — the camera, of course! — let’s run down the other key specs: The OS is Symbian Belle; the engine is a 1.3GHz single-core chip; the display is 4-inches corner to corner but its resolution is a Nokia-style 360 x 640 (nHD). There’s 512MB of RAM and 16GB of on-board storage that is thankfully expandable via microSD. A Pentaband modem increases the chances of getting a signal while globe-trotting, while data speeds will top out at plain HSPA 14.4Mbps. Now that Carl Zeiss-lensed camera: it handles continuous-focus 1080p, but is claimed to have an incredible sensor resolution of over 41-megapixels when shooting stills — or 34-megapixels for 16:9 images. It’s achieved by some clever sub-pixel interpolation jiggery-pokery that entails five pixels being merged into one to produce a final image with a max resolution of 8-megapixels, but we’ll dig deeper very soon. It’s expected to arrive in May at a price of €450 and if you’re curious, we’ve got a gallery of hands-on images and video for your viewing pleasure. Just follow the break for our first impressions. If you haven’t been sufficiently smacked in the face with the Nokia 808 PureView’s primary selling point, let’s settle the score right now: it’s a phone for camera enthusiasts. As niche devices often go, the sheer optical goodness will come with a few sacrifices. First and foremost, we’re a bit puzzled by Nokia’s choice of Symbian for the phone’s OS. That’s not to say that Belle isn’t a fine operating system, but it’s certainly a polarizing decision — not to mention perplexing, given the company’s ‘all-in’ approach to Windows Phone. Secondly, the 808 PureView is rather chunky, which is emphasized by the bulbous camera pod on the rear. In many ways, Nokia’s phone more closely rivals a point-and-shoot camera in size than a smartphone. That said, it’s still an infinitely pocketable handset, but there are certainly many other high-quality camera phones on the market that don’t demand such sacrifices. If you’re able to move beyond these two major caveats, the 808 PureView is likely a handset that many will come to adore — even if the fondness is learned over time. It features a lovely ClearBlack display, and while it’s decidedly low-res, it’s more than sufficient for Symbian Belle and its associated apps. Below the phone’s screen, users will find an extended rocker that provides access to the home screen, dialer and on / off switch. These physical buttons are combined with additional navigation options that are situated directly above on the touchscreen. The phone also features a headphone jack, micro-USB and micro-HDMI ports along the top — each recessed into a pod of their own — and the volume rocker, screen lock slider and dedicated camera button along the right-hand side. Via engadget

Nokia Lumia 610 and 900 [DC-HSPA variant]

Live from MWC 2012 Phonearena presents Nokia Lumia 610 demo. A heavily rumored handset, the Nokia Lumia 610 was finally announced today here at MWC 2012. As expected, the 610 is the first real budget-friendly Windows Phone, expected to retail for about $255 (EUR 189), which is pretty decent for a Windows Phone. For the full details, see our Nokia Lumia 610 Hands-on Review from MWC 2012 at: http://www.phonearena.com/news/Nokia-Lumia-610-Hands-on-Review_id27389

Nokia Asha 302, 202 and 203

PhoneArena live from MWC 2012: Nokia Asha 302 Hands-on Review. The Nokia Asha 302 is the full QWERTY business class addition to the extremely affordable Asha lineup based on Series 40. For the full details, see our Nokia Asha 302 hands-on from MWC 2012 at: http://www.phonearena.com/news/Nokia-Asha-302-Hands-on-Review_id27399

Super Services

The leading ClearBlack display technology from Nokia

For better brightness, contrast and outdoor visibility In-Plane Switching (IPS) type LCD and AMOLED display panels are typically used. Nokia made a significant enhancement of both.

First in September 14, 2010 with the announcement of its ClearBlack technology “for improved outdoor visibility” with AMOLED displays in the new Nokia C6-01 and E7 smartphones. The AMOLED ClearBlack display variant used a year later in Nokia N9 “beat the Super AMOLED Plus of Samsung Galaxy S II in sunlight, and was almost exactly the same quality indoors” (see the below 3d party review). The later Lumia 800 has the same type of display as well as the earlier Nokia 700.

Next application of ClearBlack technology came in August 24, 2011 with the announcement of Nokia 701 having an IPS type LCD ClearBlack display. It got the “brightest screen on a mobile phone to date” title from its predecessor Nokia E7, moving even more ahead of the Apple iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy S II in that regard. And later came two other models with IPS type LCD ClearBlack displays: Nokia 603 and Lumia 710.

So Nokia with it ClearBlack enhancement has now a clear lead in display technologies. Below you can find more details about all that, including a technical explanation of the ClearBlack enhancement approach from Nokia itself. Plenty of evidence is given first by independent third parties testing the current flagships from Nokia against their rivals, then all kind of explanation materials are included from Nokia, and an interview with Nokia developers of ClearBlack as well.

UpdateTablet and Smartphone Displays Under Bright Ambient Lighting Shoot-Out [by DisplayMate]:

– [For comparison the earlier one without Nokia ClearBlack Display technology]
Master Photo Grid for Viewing on High Resolution Displays [Round 1] [March 3, 2012]

  • [Tablets] Apple iPad 2  –  Amazon Kindle Fire  –  Motorola Xoom  –  Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
  • [Smartphones] Apple iPhone 4  –  HTC Desire  –  Motorola Droid X  –  Samsung Galaxy S

Master Photo Grid for Viewing on High Resolution Displays [Round 2] [May 8, 2012]

  • [Tablets] Apple iPad 2  –  Amazon Kindle Fire  –  Motorola Xoom  –  Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
  • [Smartphones] Apple iPhone 4  –  HTC Desire  –  Motorola Droid X  –  Nokia Lumia 900  –  Samsung Galaxy S

The Master Photo Grid below includes Screen Shots from many of the Tablets and Smartphones in our Mobile Display Technology Shoot-Out article series. For more information on how Ambient Lighting affects the displays read the Results Highlights for Tablets or the Results Highlights for Smartphones. The visual results from the Screen Shots agree very well with the Lab measured DisplayMate Contrast Rating for High Ambient Light for Tablets and the Contrast Rating for High Ambient Light for Smartphones.

The Winner:  The DisplayMate Contrast Rating for High Ambient Light for the displays ranges from a low of 15 (HTC Desire) to a high of 90 (Nokia Lumia 900). From both the Lab Measurements and the Screen Shot Viewing Tests (below) the top performing device for display viewability under Bright Ambient Lighting is the Nokia Lumia 900. This results from a combination of its high screen Brightness and low screen Reflectance, which Nokia calls ClearBlack technology.

The Samsung Galaxy S and Apple iPhone 4 are tied for second place.

The best Tablets all performed a notch below the Smartphones  –  the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 was the leader, with the iPad 2 in second place. The new iPad (not included below) performs better than the iPad 2 and just behind the Galaxy Tab 10.1. The other Smartphones and Tablets performed well below these top models  –

ALL manufacturers need to pay much more attention to their display performance in high Ambient Lighting because that is frequently how they are used. The highly touted and advertised display Contrast Ratio applies only to Absolute Darkness, which makes it pretty much irrelevant for mobile devices. Note that we plan on including the Lumia 900 in one of our upcoming Smartphone Shoot-Outs.

CR HAL is the DisplayMate Contrast Rating for High Ambient Light  –  which is based on the measured Screen Brightness and Screen Reflectance.

Update: The core products with ClearBlack technology [April 18, 2012]

TFT with capacitive touch AMOLED with capacitive touch
Nokia C6-01 (November, 2010): 3.2″, 16:9 nHD (640×360 pixels), 16.7 million colours
Nokia E7 (February, 2011): 4″, 16:9 nHD (640 x 360 pixels), 16 million colours
Nokia 701 (September, 2011): 3.5″, 16:9 nHD (640 x 360 pixels) IPS-LCD, 16 million colours; 160° viewing angle, Corning® Gorilla® Glass Nokia 700 (September, 2011): 3.2″, 16:9 nHD (640 x 360 pixels), 16 million colours
Nokia 603 (November, 2011): 3.5″, 16:9 nHD (640 x 360 pixels), with IPS technology, 16.7 million colours; 160° viewing angle, 1000 nits brightness Nokia Lumia 800 (November, 2011): 3.7” WVGA, 800 x 480 pixels, 16 million colours, with pinch zoom, 2.5D curved glass seamlessly integrated to unibody (Windows Phone, manufactured by Compal Electronics)
Nokia Lumia 710 (November, 2011): 3.7” WVGA, 800 x 480 pixels, 16 million colours, with pinch zoom (Windows Phone, manufactured by Compal Electronics) Nokia Lumia 900 (April, 2012): 4.3″ WVGA, 800 x 480 pixels, 16 million colours, with pinch zoom (Windows Phone, manufactured by Compal Electronics)
Nokia 808 PureView (May, 2012):  4″, 16:9 nHD (640 x 360 pixels), 16.7 million colours, Corning® Gorilla® Glass, 2.5 D curved glass

UpdateClear, black and super bright [Nokia Conversations, Feb 2, 2012]

Being able to answer emails and access entertainment while you’re out and about is one of the greatest revolutions in work and leisure of the last 100 years.

But the whole thing’s scuppered if the sun’s shining right on your screen and reflections mean you can’t see anything. In fact, the problem’s become worse in recent years as we’ve largely switched to full screen, touch-driven displays.

Brighter displays are one part of a solution. And so we’ve pumped up the power and moved to improved display solutions in pursuit of a few extra nits.

But making the screen brighter and brighter has a big drawback. Big, modern screens use up a lot more power than the 1.5-inch mono display on your old Nokia 3310. There comes a point where you’d be prepared for the screen to be a little dimmer if it meant you could get a couple more hours’ use out of your phone.

So a second strand to improving outdoor usability needed to be devised. One that focused on reducing the reflectiveness of your screen. Anti-reflective coatings were introduced. But they don’t go quite far enough.

That’s why Nokia created ClearBlack display.

ClearBlack display uses a sequence of polarising layers to eliminate reflections.

You have probably tried polarising sunglasses before now and so have a rough idea of how that works. If you look at a window or the surface of some water using polarising glasses, then they become more transparent – which is why they’re especially good for fishermen. The polariser cuts out reflected light.

Polariser layers used in display solutions are bit more sophisticated than in sunglasses. Light rays actually get “processed” many times on its way in and out of your phones´s screen.

Nokia polarisation_01
Download the larger image from here.

There’s both a linear polariser and retardation layers between the surface of your phone and the display. When light hits your screen, this is what happens:

  1. It hits the linear polariser, this vertically polarises the light. (Polarising means – roughly – aligning the wave vibration in a particular direction).
  2. Then it hits the circular polariser retardation layer. This converts the light again, making it right-circularly polarised.
  3. Then it hits the screen and bounces off it, switching the rotation of the light to leftist.
  4. It goes back through the retardation layer. When this happens, the light becomes horizontally polarised.
  5. Finally, it hits the linear polariser, since the light is horizontally polarised at this point it can be blocked entirely by this optical solution.

So why doesn’t the light from your phone’s display get blocked? Because it only goes through the second half of this journey so the light is unpolarised when it hits the final filter and goes through.

Nokia 701 with IPS type TFT LCD ClearBlack Display vs Apple iPhone 4 IPS type TFT LCD Display comparison [PhoneArena , Oct 1, 2011]

PhoneArena examines the 1000 nits display on the Nokia 701 via an improvised outdoor comparison with the Apple iPhone 4 and the Samsung Galaxy S II, about which you can read on: Thousand points of light: the brightest mobile display to date on the Nokia 701 compared[Oct 1, 2011]

Nokia 701 with IPS type TFT LCD ClearBlack Display vs Nokia 700 with AMOLED ClearBlack Display (Sept 19, 2011)

More information about this new brightness record is in The technical excellence of the new Symbian range from Nokia [Oct 1, 2011] post on this blog.

Nokia AMOLED ClearBlack Display [vs Super LCD] Sunlight Viewable Test on the Lumia 800 [minipcpro, Nov 23, 2011]

Nokia ClearBlack http://www.netbooknews.com The promise of sunlight viewable AMOLEDs has been around for a year now, and if you put on a foil to get rid of the glossy display you actually have a decent shot of using it outdoors. Nokia has actually done something very similar with their ClearBlack Display which is an AMOLED display with a polarized filter on top. The polarizer removes undesired reflections which increases visual contrast to provide vibrant colors and blacker blacks. This enables the ClearBlack Display to be usable in brightly lit conditions.

Information about the Lumia 800 phone used in this comparison see in the Nokia Lumia (Windows Phone 7) value proposition [Oct 26, 2011] post on this blog.

The other phone used for comparison in this video is the HTC Mozart with its so called Super LCD by Sony Mobile Display, a technology which is quite close to the IPS LCD technology. HTC is using the same technology on its latest HTC Titan and Radar phones, as well as on a number of other phones (plus a number of additional ones since the specification HTC’s product site typically says nothing about the type of display like in the case of HTC Mozart).

Super AMOLED Plus vs AMOLED ClearBlack Display [Videos From ZOMGitsCj.com, July 14, 2011]

From http://www.ZOMGitsCJ.com/2011/07/15/ye-giant-samsung-galaxy-s-ii-review/ here’s a quick video comparison of the Super AMOLED Plus Display on the Samsung Galaxy S II vs the [AMOLED]Clearblack CBD display on the Nokia E7.

Ye Giant Samsung Galaxy S II Review [ZOMGitsCJ.com, July 15, 2011]

… To sum it up, the Super AMOLED screen on the SGS2 is pretty darn great, with great image quality, good viewing angles, good sunlight legibility and great energy efficiency. It’d be hard to fault the screen on the SGS2, and apart from Nokia’s [AMOLED] CBD screens, nothing else really comes close to it. …

Here the “classic” ClearBlack, Nokia E7 is used for comparison. The “second generation” AMOLED ClearBlack displays of Nokia N9, Lumia 800 or Nokia 700 perform even better:

First Impressions of the Nokia N9 [ZOMGitsCJ.com, Oct 14, 2011]


What we liked:

  • The 3.9 Inch AMOLED ClearBlack curved display is gorgeous. I put it right up next to a Galaxy S2 (which I thought was the benchmark in mobile screen tech) and the N9 beat it in sunlight, and was almost exactly the same quality indoors (even better I’d say). Great viewing angles too.

image

Other information: Nokia N9 UX [?Swipe?] on MeeGo 1.2 Harmattan [June 24 – Oct 27, 2011]

this new brightness record is in The technical excellence of the new Symbian range from Nokia [Oct 1, 2011] post on this blog.

Details from Nokia

ClearBlack Display, a vibrant differentiator [Nokia Conversations, Nov 15, 2011]

Smartphones have grown up in recent years, going from mainly keyboard based phones to now having the entire front being dominated by large touch screens. We’ve also gone from resistive displays that had to be pressed significantly to register a press to capacitive displays that are much more of a joy to use.

However, we can all agree on one thing: not all displays on touch screen phones are created the same. Here in Oregon, when the sun finally shines in the summer, we constantly battle screen glare that takes a good screen makes it unreadable in bright sunlight. Other complaints include poor colors, greyish-colored blacks and scratches taking away from the touch-screen experience.

Enter the advantages of Nokia’s ClearBlack Display. This awesome feature is proudly featured on the Nokia Lumia 710 and 800, along with the recently released Nokia E7 and C6-01, and the Nokia N9. To me, the exciting part is that the Lumia 710 and 800 are the only Windows Phone devices that feature ClearBlack Displays and this feature will be noticed every time you show your phone off to someone – they’ll notice the vibrancy of the display, whether you’re showing it off outside or inside under bright fluorescent lights, ClearBlack Display looks spectacular, every time.

What’s the story behind the magic of the ClearBlack Display?

What ClearBlack Display provides

Why integrate ClearBack display in these devices?  Nokia’s engineers looked at display-related issues and wanted to provide a solution that would yield vibrant colors, blacker blacks and high contrast but which wouldn’t compromise battery life significantly. ClearBlack Display is an innovative solution that solves many of the issues that plague touch screen phone users.

Think about the last time you tried to use your phone outside, whether it was to post something on Facebook or navigate to a nearby location. To adequately see the screen, you likely had to tilt or shield the screen to see text or a map. To get around this, phone manufacturers have tried approaches such as increasing the display brightness, which helps, but also increases power consumption, affecting battery life. Mobile phone users have also bought antiglare screen protectors in an effort to cut down on glare.

ClearBlack Display helps solve this issue while preserving image quality and and keeping blacks as dark as possible. Also, ClearBlack Display phones create an amazing color contrastthat makes your apps, videos and images pop off the screen in a stunning manner.

So what is ClearBlack display? [nokia, Dec 1, 2010]

ClearBlack ensures that the blacks you see really are just that — black — which in turn enhances the contrast of the display and makes the whole screen much easier to see. Read more: http://conversations.nokia.com/2010/11/04/so-what-is-clearblack-display/

To help explain how the display works, let’s talk about touch screens themselves. The touch screen on your phone is actually a layered pancake of different elements. The facet that makes ClearBlack Display so effective is where one of the layers, called the polarizer, is placed. The polarizer is a circular layer that is effective at removing undesired reflections. Stamping out reflections means higher visual contrast, resulting in vibrant colors and blacker blacks.

In ClearBlack Display phones, the polarizer is placed between the window and the touch sensor. The goal of this layers is to stack the optical performance with an air-gap solution. By putting the polarizer between the touch and display, engineers can block reflection from the captive sensor grid. To envision this, tilt a traditional touch screen phone in direct sunlight…see the grid of tiny dots?  That’s the capacitive sensor grid.

Finally, when placing the polarizer in this position, light is diffused and reflection is minimized, resulting in a clearer display where all icons and colors contrast against one another. To see an example of the difference between a ClearBlack Display device, see the image below. On the left, a Nokia C6-01 with the polarizer is in place and on the right, a prototype C6-01 without ClearBlack Displayshows glare and reflection.

ClearBlack Display and you

The next time you’re outdoors, either looking up a map, showing off the photos from a weekend event or otherwise reading text on your phone, having a Nokia phone with ClearBlack Display will be of huge benefit.

You will no longer have to squint and rotate your phone to read text or see an image because of this revolutionary new display technology from Nokia’s display engineers. Also, you won’t have to reach for your charger as often because of the battery friendliness this solution provides.

So what is ClearBlack display? [Nokia Conversations, Nov 4, 2010]

Nokia displays have never looked better

imageIn the past, phones were largely measured and compared by a few factors: ease of use, signal strength and the quality of the calls. However, over the years, phones have become smarter and do more, and there are now other components on the phone that are starting to be used to measure their quality. Many of us would probably put the display towards the top of the list. The display’s quality, its brightness, the viewing angle, the ability to be read in all lighting conditions, are all important. So it’s no surprise that one of the big talking points for the new devices launched at Nokia World 2010 was a new technology known as ClearBlack display.

ClearBlack display isn’t a completely new type of display technology like AMOLED. It’s actually a method to reduce reflections on the screen and improve visual image quality, especially outdoors. ClearBlack ensures that the blacks you see really are just that – black – which in turn enhances the contrast of the display and makes the whole screen much easier to see. This will be especially useful for apps like Ovi Maps, which are likely to be used outside. Also, sharing pictures or other items on-screen with others will be a lot easier due to the technology that enables excellent viewing angles.

The effect of the ClearBlack display technology is similar to that produced by a pair of polarising sunglasses. If you look at a body of water on a sunny day without a pair of polarising glasses, it’s really hard to see anything below the surface, but with the glasses on, the reflections are eliminated and you can see underneath the surface. In the same way, without ClearBlack display, you see the reflections on the phone’s screen, but with it you see the image on the screen. However, unlike sunglasses, ClearBlack display improves the vividness of the colors: in fact, because the contrast is higher, they’ll seem more vivid.

Another useful feature of this technology is also that the viewing angle of the device’s display is improved, so sharing pictures or other items on-screen will be a lot easier.

Here’s a picture of the Nokia C6-01 with ClearBlack display, alongside an early prototype of the same device without it:

Effectively, with ClearBlack display your device is able to provide a high quality image in any type of situation, indoors, outdoors, low-light and bright-light. ClearBlack display adjusts the brightness automatically to optimum level depending on the conditions you are in.

Another advantage is that by improving the image quality, and reducing the need to turn up the brightness, you also reduce the energy needed to power the display, and hence reduce the battery drain compared to regular technology, and so your mobile device will last longer between charges. Of the new Symbian^3 phones, the Nokia C6-01, and the Nokia E7 both have the very latest ClearBlack display technology.

Nokia E7 [Nokia Conversations, Nov 23, 2010]

The forthcoming Nokia E7 is set to be the new communicator. It’s powered by the new Symbian OS, offers three homescreens and a QWERTY keyboard for super-fast typing. All cased within an anodised aluminium shell and real glass display.

There’s a lot packed into this device. For starters there’s the 4 inch AMOLED capacitive touchscreen with Clear Black Display technology, which moves over to reveal the 4-row QWERTY keyboard. This makes it perfect for business use, and having Mail for Exchange, Quickoffice dynamic premium, F-Secure anti-theft for mobile and Adobe PDF reader preloaded means you’re able to make the Nokia E7 your own little portable office.

With 16GB of built-in storage and USB On-The-Go, you’ll be able to take as many HD videos as you like using the 8-megapixel camera, edit them using the preloaded video-editing software and watch them back later by plugging the Nokia E7 directly into your TV using the HDMI-out on the phone.

The Nokia E7 also comes with all the usual Ovi services, such as free navigation for life with Ovi Maps, Ovi Store for downloading apps or games and Ovi Music for downloading all your favourite bands.

Nokia Lumia 800 – light fantastic [Nokia Conversations, Oct 26, 2011]

… This is an amazing phone to hold in your hand. The polycarbonate body is all subtle curves topped with a bright AMOLED ClearBlack display [Nokia 700 also uses AMOLED, ClearBlack technology as well as Nokia N9 although in specifications AMOLED is only indicated and only the Australian N9 launch press release mentiones it] with toughened glass stretching to the sides of the phone. …

Nokia 603 is Belle-issimo! [Nokia Conversations, Oct 13, 2011]

… With a 3.5-inch ClearBlack display [the same TFT-LCD ClearBlack display with IPS technology as in the Nokia 701 and in the Lumia 710] under toughened glass to make sure your screen is visible even in bright sunlight, the Nokia 603 is versatile under any circumstances. The screen offers nHD resolution (640 x 360 pixels) and 16 million colours.  …

The Nokia 701 screen outshines the rest [Nokia Conversations, Sept 28, 2011]

image

You don’t get to make the brightest touchscreen on the planet without being pretty, er, bright. So I pressed for an interview with Peter Nisula, head of the display and touch development team [more precisely: Senior Manager Display & Touch, Windows Phone Product Engineering at Nokia (since June 2011)] and Osku Sahlsten as Nokia 701 Display and Touch Project Manager [more precisely: Managing display development teams in Nokia. Responsibilities in display development, conceptual work and in technology projects.], to find out how Nokia managed to leave the rest of the world’s phones in the shade.

Nokia Conversations.
Creating a phone with the worlds brightest screen is great, but why do it?

Peter Nisula.
In honesty, there’s two answers to this question. The first answer is, well, why not? We’ve got the technology to do it. The second answer is that having a screen that’s super-bright means that when used outdoors, it’s even easier to see what’s displayed on the screen if it’s lit really, really well.

The IPS type LCD with ClearBlack technology makes the bright parts of the display bright and the dark bits, especially the black colours, dark. This combination gives a really clear display for the user.

NC.
Doesn’t a super-bright display drain the battery of the phone quicker?

PN.
There is no significant impact on the battery life. We have performed studies in order to determine how people will use their phones on a daily basis. How long they spend on gaming, listening to music or even the simplest of tasks such as just standing at a bus stop typing a text message. With the information from studies we are able to decide the optimized settings for phone. All these things are considered when we make a phone.

Although the screen of the Nokia 701 is the brightest screen on a smartphone, it’s not always cranked up to the highest level of luminance. As with most Nokia smartphones, there’s a built in ALS (ambient light sensor) that senses the light in the environment and adjusts the screen accordingly. If it’s dark, the phone turns down the screen brightness and the opposite happens if you’re in a really bright place.

NC.
How bright is this exactly?

PN.
The brightness – or luminance – is measured in what’s called nitsand the Nokia 701 screen has 1000 of them.

NC.
1000 nits huh? So, what does that mean? In real-life terms?

PN.
Well, think of it this way. 1000 nits is equivalent 3145 lux. Sunlight on an average day ranges from 32,000 to 100,000 lux, TV studios are lit at about 1000 lux and moonlight measures at 1 lux. So, it’s clearly not as bright as daylight but much brighter than moonlight. However it’s three times brighter than a TV studiomaking it very bright.

Oh, and the max brightness of the Nokia 701 is more than double higher than the iPad, if that’s a good example?

NC.
Is this really the brightest smartphone screen to date? What do other phones measure up to?

PN.
We work with the major display manufacturers in the world and we know competition around, so we know the situation really well. We can bravely say this is the most brightest smartphone screen in the world.

NC.
Are there plans to introduce IPS type LCD screens to every Nokia smartphone?

PN.
IPS type LCD as a technology is giving certain advantages without doubts, but we need to see what technologies will be introduced to Nokia smartphones in the future. Of course, we’d love to have IPS type LCDs on all future Nokia smartphones. But we don’t know if that’s going to happen. We hope it will.

If you’re still confused about some of the terminology used – and to be honest, it baffles us slightly, too – we’ve written a separate piece that explains all when it comes to nits and lux.

Would you like a smartphone with the worlds brightest screen? Let us know your thoughts, in the comments below.

Image credit: chadmiller