If you go over to Nokia’s announcement where they announced a sweeping deal with Microsoft and read all the comments you’ll see that most of the comments are in total despair mode.
It’s like a bunch of Google employees are astroturfing the comments there. “I’m gonna buy Android” they all say. Many others say “how can Elop (Nokia’s CEO) bet on a failed platform?” Other blogs are calling this note “a suicide note.”
You all are nuts.
So, let’s all take a deep breath together and calm down. I know it’s shocking to hear that your beloved Symbian sucks, but I’ve been saying it for years and you’ve been calling me names. I come from the future and I know you don’t like to be dragged into it.
You’ll soon come to see that Windows Phone 7 actually rocks and actually is a lot nicer to use than Android.
“So why has it sold so poorly then Smartass Scoble?”
Because it has no apps.
Nothing matters in this world more than apps. Write that on your forehead. Write that on the mirror on your bathroom wall. Write that on your car windshield. Whatever it will take so you remember it.
HP execs know this. Google’s execs know this. Everyone in Silicon Valley knows this.
Apps are the ONLY thing that matters now.
Why? Because when a customer, whether in Cape Town or San Francisco or Tel Aviv walks into a store to buy a smartphone they will NOT want to feel stupid.
What makes you feel stupid when buying a Smartphone? Buying one that doesn’t have the apps your friends are taunting you with.
Right now Nokia and Windows Phone 7 are out of the game. That’s why Google’s exec, Vic Gundotra, is calling them both “turkeys.”
Does this get both into the game? Yes!
1. Nokia has distribution. Distribution Google doesn’t yet have. Nokia has dealers and stores in the weirdest places on earth. Places Apple won’t have stores in for decades, if ever.
2. MIcrosoft has a great OS. I like it better than Android. If you actually USED a Windows Phone 7 you’d see that to be true.
3. Microsoft has great developer tools.
4. Microsoft has Xbox. Which has just been rejuvenated with Kinect (hottest selling product in history, even hotter than the iPad!) IE, some parts of Microsoft ARE cool!
5. Nokia has great hardware design and supply chains. They always have great cameras, great screens. Supply chains matter. A lot more than anyone thinks (the stuff Apple never talks about, but works its ass off on is supply chain management — I got to see this first hand when I visited China).
You add that all up as a salad and now the smart developers have to take another look at Microsoft and Nokia. They can’t ignore them like they can RIM (we all know people won’t use a lot of cool apps on a Blackberry).
So, should Nokia have gone Android? No way. That takes them through a real commoditization (IE, non differentiated) minefield. One that Nokia execs aren’t smart enough to get through.
See, what you don’t know is Nokia just doesn’t have the right people to play in this new world. They needed to join the engineering teams at Nokia who know how to build great hardware with someone else who knows how to build services. That someone else is Microsoft. No one else was as strong a fit and if you think Google is it, well, sorry, no. That would be even worse for Nokia because Nokia needs to have something different than HTC has (Nokia can’t compete with China’s brightest minds).
So, sorry, Nokia fans, you just aren’t looking at this deal the right way.
This is the only way Stephen Elop could go in this war to get app developers excited again.
What you should be asking yourself is “can Elop really execute?” That I’m not so sure about and we’ll only know for sure six to 18 months from now. But the strategy is the right one.
You should buy a Windows Phone 7 before you run off your mouth. That’s why you all are nuts when you say you’re buying Android. What a hoot!
Photo credit: Iain Buchanan, Creative Commons licensed photo.
UPDATE: Engadget just released these Nokia/Microsoft concept phone photos.