Nokia Wooing Application Developers
Nokia has been very aggressive in their courting of application developers. This is a move made to reinvigorate the way the company has their smartphone market presence.
The company, based out of Espoo, Finland is trying to convince some developers to create more applications for their Ovi application store. They recently did this at the CTIA Enterprise and Applications show which recently wrapped in San Francisco.
Their efforts are part of a much larger overall strategy to help them gain some traction within the United States smartphone market, where it’s struggling mightily against top competitors, Google with Android and Apple and their iPhone. With Android growing in popularity and Gingerbread or Android 3.0 due out later this year along with Verizon possibly getting an iPhone, which would mightily increase Apple’s prominence, things don’t look like they’ll get any better.
Hey have a plan for a turnaround though. A big part of that turnaround is their new smartphone, the N8. The hope is that they’ll be able to take advantage of the rapid changes that happen in the smartphone handset market and be able to capture and then take some of the consumer smartphone sector of the market.
Nokia believes what’s hot in the United States today is going to change. They believe that the good news for them is that change will happen and winning is ultimately about the responses a company makes to the consumer and their needs. The Executive VP believes that Nokia is going to do that and he believes that it will start with the N8.
The company has high hopes of being able to stem the exodus. Their share of the smartphone market currently remains unchanged at 39.3%, Apple is nearing close to 16.1% and Google currently has a 4.8% share. This information comes from IDC who is a market research firm.
The low level of penetration is something that’s a deterrent to developers wanting to build programs. They’re unwilling to learn new programming languages for a platform that simply isn’t popular and isn’t selling very many applications.
Nokia is still the largest handset maker in the world by sheer volume does have a wide network for distribution which goes across over 160 different countries. They have direct knowledge of some of the largest markets which include China and India. This can help the developers create some new business models around their applications.
To add additional incentive Nokia simplified their programming through reducing the amount of phone models that they sell and introducing a new line of smartphones running on their updated platform, Symbian.
- Released new developer tools which will work over all of the versions of the software
- Waived Ovi application store access fees
- Supplied development help as well as managers in order to help the programmers be able to customize their applications
The perception doesn’t match the current reality is the word coming from Nokia and their VP.
The efforts are beginning to pay off as they’ve so far managed to lure around 155k developers from the United States. This includes some really big names like:
• Electronic Arts
• Facebook and PopCap Games
They still need to get though some very muddy waters though in order to succeed. They’ve had many of their top executives leave and companies like Samsung and Sony Ericsson are abandoning ship and focusing their attention on Android.
Even with all of that Nokia is throwing everything they have at it to become friendlier for developers and courting them with simple application tools, new products and the global marketplace. If this is going to be enough to win any share of the market from their rivals and manage to regain their foothold is a story that’s yet to be written.
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