Can Nokia Win Consumers With Affordability?
Even though Android is the hottest smartphone operating system and growing fast, Nokia (NYSE:NOK) chose not to go with the Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) software when it decided to relaunch its campaign. Instead, the Finnish company backed Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone OS. This was one of Nokia’s first clear points of differentiation in the smartphone market, and it has tried to continue down the same path in order to make its products unique.
Chief executive Stephen Elop puts an important focus on “differentiation” at Nokia. In the highly competitive smartphone market, it’s important for manufacturers to find a way to make their device unique, as has been demonstrated by Sony (NYSE:SNE) launching waterproof and dust-resistant devices recently.
For Nokia, cameras are another way of offering something special. The company’s line of Pureview phones has cameras boasting more megapixels than even some standalone digital cameras. It is also working on wireless charging capabilities as well as screens that can respond to various types of touch beyond just skin. In addition, it has been slowly working on a new angle that may make it a lot easier to snatch up customers: developing more and more affordable smartphones.
Currently, Nokia’s cheapest Windows Phone is the Lumia 520, which costs 139 euros, but some coy responses from Elop hint that an even cheaper model may be in the works. As demand grows for smartphones, price may be a key factor in attracting first-time consumers as well as those in emerging markets. Nokia’s line may be well suited for that, even though it has to stay wary of more competition possibly on its way in the next few months.
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