A corporate presentation slide, seen by Mobilephones.com, confirms that Nokia will launch a new Nokia-branded smartphone next year.
The Finnish companies Capital Markets Day 2016 conference for investors, used the presentation slide on November 15th and the slide sequence includes details on “Nokia brand’s return to smartphones”.
The new Nokia smartphone is likely to be announced at the 2017 Mobile World Congress (MWC), which takes place on February 27th. Nokia’s chief executive, Rajeev Suri, is scheduled to make a keynote presentation at MWC and Nokia has already reserved a stall at the event.
On May 18th Nokia formed a new partnership with HMD global, a new Finnish company, founded for manufacturing smartphones, feature phones and tablets. The conditional deal in May gave HMD exclusive rights to the Nokia trademark on feature phones.
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An initial statement from Nokia said “If and when we find a world class partner” to handle marketing, sales, consumer support and manufacturing, it would reenter the smartphone market.
Nokia has now confirmed that HMD will “develop, market and sell Nokia branded phones and accessories”, while Foxconn will deal with R&D and manufacturing. HMD will spend £430m on marketing over the next three years.
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There is now also a deal in place for HMD to produce Nokia’s hardware for ten years and a sole global license, for all types of Nokia branded phones and tablets, has been issued.
The new Nokia smartphone is expected to be the Nokia D1C and this will run on Google’s Android 7 Nougat OS. The Nokia D1C will most likely use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 430 processor and have a Full HD display (1920 x 1080 pixels) and 3GB RAM.
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Nokia may give the Google Android interface a distinctive look by using its Z Launcher, first seen on the Nokia N1 tablet. Current Android smartphone users can download Z Launcher Beta from the Play Store for free.
Z Launcher has a very distinctive and individual feel to it, with homes screens that evolve as it learns your habits. You can view the Z Launcher in action in my video below.
In 2014, Nokia sold its device business to Microsoft for $7.2 billion. Microsoft purchased the device business at a time when Nokia was planning to move to Android. If that had happened, then it would most likely have ended the Windows Phone experiment.
The deal stopped Nokia from manufacturing phones with its name until 2015 and today the deal is considered as a failure for Microsoft. So, it is now up to Nokia, HMD and Foxconn to bring Nokia smartphones back to the market.
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Written by: Michael Brown