In response to the Nokia memo, I am glad that finally reality seems to have dawned at Nokia .
While Tomi Ahonen and others have launched a passionate denial/ contradiction of the ideas in the memo, the reality is very simple ..
I do not mind if the memo is genuine, a blog, a rumour or a combination thereof.
The point is: The memo (if you can call it that ..) does encapsulate the problem .. which is
a) Lack of ecosystem management and dominance.
Google orchestrates the Android ecosystem.
Apple owns the iPhone ecosystem.
Nokia sells very large number of devices but it is no longer enough to JUST sell a large number of devices
What ecosystem does Nokia manage/dominate?
If not, can it be called a market leader?
b) The rate of change
c) Taking emerging markets for granted
So, related to above, the questions then become:
a) Can Nokia develop and dominate an ecosystem? and / or leverage existing ecosystems
b) Forget iPhone, consider Samsung which has (so far) managed the rate of change much better. Someone called it a ‘fast follower’. No matter what we call Samsung, they are managing to leverage mindshare
c) Refusal to acknowlegde the new manufacturers in India and China and hoping that these markets will be loyal for ever i.e. ignoring spice mobilility micromax, Olive telecom and others.
Now consider that today INQ announced the facebook phone .. on ADROID
lets read the back story behind this ..and the irony of a facebook phone on Google’s Android .. then think of the rate of change ..
I remember going to a Nokia booth at MWC last year and a woman showing me an idea of new Nokia services.
It was a ‘green’ service for travellers(reducing carbon footprint). As someone who travels extensively and a heavy user of mobile devices, in theory, I am an ideal target user of the service
But to get it, I had to get a Nokia id and a nokia phone.
I told her that there are OTHER ways to get that service and I added that as a traveller the most imp site for me is time and date but she rattled on on a pre scripted manner about how great this new green service was if ONLY I switched to Nokia ..
That’s basically completely missing the point(that I, as a customer have an option and that the reducing carbon footprint service can be obtained from many different ways)
And in my view, apps are a long tail service .. and most customers are now defining what they want in a much more granular way
Now this bring us to facebook phone ..
when I talked of mobile web 2.0 I often said that it should be called ‘web mobile 2.0′ i.e. web drives the agenda
Thats why facebook phone is more important.
Its the service which customers want ..
So, finally glad that someone(at the top) in Nokia has woken up to a new reality that the dynamics of the market itself have changed completely! and old style strategies and approaches will not work
In April 2008, I posted a blog based on a talk called The ASUS effect : Mobile innovation triggered by open source, long tail devices and a shift in the device value chain
That has been highly prophetic .. although I framed it in context of Linux and not android .. the principles are the same ..
Open source introduces a MUCH higher rate of change .. that explains Android success and Facebook phone on Android .. and on the other hand we have the iPhone
Think about it: A young person(a traditional Nokia demographic) goes to a phone shop
They have two choices – a Nokia phone OR a Facebook Android phone
Which will they choose?
Will it matter that its an Android phone? Its the same analogy with me at the MWC Nokia booth ..
In any case, lets wait and see what happens now ..