Nokia smartphones officially returning in 2017 under HMD Global
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We reported earlier that Nokia smartphones might live on under another manufacturer. That news is now official, as Finland-based HMD Global officially announced today that they would be manufacturing and selling a new line of smartphones bearing the Nokia brand sometime in the first half of 2017.
Nokia, who used to be a powerhouse in the mobile phone world, has seen a drastic decline in market share over the past decade. After being purchased by Microsoft in 2014, the Nokia brand seemed to disappear, being absorbed into Microsoft’s own Lumia smartphone division. Just one year later Microsoft dispersed Nokia, writing off US $7.6 billion and laying off 7,800 employees, many of whom were former Nokia employees. The brand soon fell into obscurity, with the brand being secured by HMD for use on low-cost feature phones.
HMD is now using its branding deal to put Nokia’s name on smartphones scheduled for release in the first half of 2017. HMD has secured the rights to use the Nokia name for the next 10 years, meaning that we will likely see Nokia branded devices for years to come. The new Nokia devices will run Google’s Android OS.
Arto Nummela, CEO of HMD Global, was excited about the official announcement, stating:
“Today marks a happy and important day for HMD. Nokia has been one of the most iconic and recognisable phone brands globally for decades. The excitement of re-introducing this much-loved, well-known and trusted brand to smartphone consumers is a responsibility and an ambition that everyone at HMD shares."
HMD Global already has a “significant global foothold” in “[the] Americas, Europe, Asia, Middle East, Africa, India and China” thanks to its strong feature phone business. Time will tell if the Nokia name still carries the weight and respect it once had, and whether this branding will be enough to give HMD Global a notable piece of an already saturated smartphone market.
Be sure to check Notebookcheck.net as we continue to report on Nokia’s and HMD’s new move.