Finnish handset maker Nokia was at the top of the mobile phone industry for several years, offering devices that served as benchmarks for the competition. Then, five years ago, the iPhone and Android devices helped to kickstart the smartphone industry that Research in Motion had pioneered earlier in the decade with the BlackBerry.
After faltering in the smartphone industry, Nokia eventually partnered exclusively with Microsoft to release devices running the Windows Phone mobile operating system. And while sales of Windows Phone devices have been considerably lower than iPhone and Android handsets, Nokia has no plans to ditch Microsoft yet.
In an attempt to recover market share that it has lost, the infamous DigiTimes, citing its usual Taiwanese supply chain sources, reports that Nokia will still be ordering a large number of Windows Phone 7.5 devices into 2013. Nokia has plans to sell these older handsets in emerging markets as low- and mid-range smartphones that cost far less than flagship Windows Phone 8 smartphones.
Interestingly, the report does suggest that Nokia might switch to an alternative platform for its lower tier smartphones in emerging markets. That move would presumably be made if Windows Phone 7.5 devices fail to meet Nokia’s internal sales projections in the foreseeable future. While it has so far ruled it out, perhaps Nokia will consider switching to Google’s open source Android operating system down the line.
It would be quite an interesting move if Nokia switched to the Android platform. Samsung has been an extremely successful Android handset maker in the past few years, while Motorola and LG have had considerable success. Nokia does make rather powerful smartphones with attractive designs, so switching to Android could eventually be a smart move if it truly wants to regain its position atop the mobile phone industry.