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Nokia admits to smartphone blunder

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How Nokia missed the smartphone bandwagon

In a candid interview with The Wall Street Journal, former Nokia designer Frank Nuovo admits that bad judgements and timing led to Nokia missing out on smartphone success.

Over a decade, Nokia invested around $40 billion (£25.5 billion) in research and development. This exhaustive spend resulted in the company revealing a phone with a colour touch screen several years before the Apple iPhone. Nokia also managed to develop a tablet during the 1990s, years before the Apple iPad release.

Upon realising that Nokia was sitting on such revolutionary and potentially successful devices, Nuovo said: “Oh my God. We had it completely nailed.” This echoes Stephen Elop, chief executive at Nokia, who recently said: “If only they had been landed in products. I think Nokia would have been in a different place.”

Picking up the pieces

Despite spending on research and development, Nokia never brought any of the products to market. Instead, the company chose to focus on basic mobile phones. This error in judgement has left the company still attempting to break into the smartphone market despite recently announcing 10,000 Nokia job cuts, which comes after 4000 jobs were axed in April 2011.

Tom Glass creative director at theEword, said: “After spending $40 billion on research, Nokia could have become a smartphone market leader. Instead, it has been left with around $6 billion (£3.82 billion) worth of patents. These memories of what could have been will now probably need to be sold to raise funds for the company, which has lost around 90 percent of its market share over the past five years.”

Written by lauren_knowles_swapLauren Knowles

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