What went wrong with Nokia in the US?

Posted: September 21, 2010 in Generic, Uncategorized

UPDATE Sept. 23, 2010: Today a refreshing change was seen that will hopefully be the beginning of the end of the “lack of attention” I mentioned below. Nokia and AT&T announced an Innovators contest. Great news! Now maybe subsidized N8s or E7s will be announced for 2011.

I originally wrote the “article” below as a response to Matt Miller’s ZDNet article and thought it makes a good article in itself. It’s here for you  all to see and I’m curious to hear your responses:

It’s not just subsidized pricing. Many, many people pay the higher price for unlocked phones. Nokia is not an unknown in the US market place, but unfortunately they are known for not making phones the consumer wants. When they do it is too little too late. The country wants flip phones and they insist we want candy bar phones. When they finally realize they were wrong they give us flip phones and yet now we want PDA’s (pre-smartphone term). They give us the E61, E61i and E71 but now we want touch phones….

Additional examples include:

Touch screen – Apple beat everyone here and Nokia’s answer was the N97. It was a fiasco for Nokia and the fact that no US carrier provided it did not help. The 5800 (Tube) caused a lot of stir because of Batman, Dark Knight, yet it took Nokia forever to release it, much less admit its existence. Had they gotten it to market quickly maybe things would be different today.

Ovi Store – Really? I mean, really? I had the N900, N97, 5800 and E71, with the N900 and E71 being the best of them. But I never got any apps, other than Angry Birds & Sportstracker, from Ovi Store. Why? I had to search for apps from blog sites because there were very few of the apps for the US market, or they arent ones we even want. Restaurant info in China or movie times in Finland won’t do me any good in the US. Where are the US developers? They’re making apps for Apple and Android (I recently got a Samsung & the Android market has more relevant apps to the US than I can handle, or will ever need). Where’s the Blockbuster app, or Fandango, banking with Wells Fargo or BoA? Again, they’re on the Apple Store or Android Market.

Marketing – How often do we see Nokia ads on TV? Very, very seldom. There was one for AT&T and the E71…it ran for about a week. There are Nokia Centers in LA and a couple of other cities, but do they sell phones there? Um, no. Doh

Availability of devices – Can I get a device at a major retailer? Not really (Best Buy is a hit or miss). I have to go to eBay or nokiausa.com to get a device….but I have to wait 6+ months for it after it’s been announced. Oh and then if I pre-order it will probably be delayed.

I really do like Nokia, and have for years. However, they seem to be more interested in investing in emerging markets like China and India. We can’t blame them for that as they have a business to run. Their position in the US is one they created….they have ignored the US consumer for far too long so the US consumer now ignores them. We go to concerts in their venues, but we take pictures and share social media from those venues with our Apples and Samsung devices. Lack of subsidized phones has not hurt them with the US consumer; it’s “lip service” and the lack of attention…


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