Nokia World 2012 is over and appears to be done and dusted, but what did it bring to the industry and to the consumer and what did it miss? These and more questions will be answered in today’s editorial.
Unlike previous Nokia World’s of the past, Nokia World 2012 ushers in a new era of smaller events dotted around the world with some separation between retail partners, networks and journalists.
As a journalist, writer, blogger, author or whatever title that I can be known as, I will also look at the event from the angle of a prospective buyer.
The announcement of the Nokia Lumia 920, with a 4.5-inch display and the Nokia Lumia 820 with 4.3-inch display did not rock my world. The reason for this is that unfortunately, so many leaks had occurred in the past week about the two devices that not much was left to be revealed. Nokia still needs to work on the containment aspects of the phone business.
The Nokia Lumia 920 arrives with an 8 megapixel camera with PureView technology but not the PureView technology we have known from the release of the Nokia 808. This produces confusion as to what is and what is not PureView. I would have like to have seen the Damian Dinning, who was central to the development of PureView, take the stand. The Nokia Lumia 820 lacks PureView.
Much of the interesting aspects of the Lumia 920 centred around imaging and the potential personalisation of the windows phone 8 home screen. I am no photographer but I love taking photographs and Instagram remains my number one camera applications and so the imaging aspects of the Lumia 920 holds some interest for me.
However, I have to be honest here. I am the owner of an Nokia N8, iPhone and I have a DSLR to cover those times when I want to take a ‘professional’ shot. The announcement of the Lumia 920 left behind much of what I expected to see. Although, it has been 5 years in development before PureView came to the Nokia 808, it has been some 12 months since the release of the first Nokia windows phone and secondly, it is over 18 months since the partnership between Nokia and Microsoft started. I expected the same PureView technology with enhancements to arrive in the Lumia 920. The Lumia 920 arrives with an 8 megapixel camera and not all the functionality that already exists in the Nokia 808. Why? Nokia World 2012 is perceived as the date when Nokia will release their flagship products. I do not feel that the Lumia 920 is a flagship product and Nokia confirms as much in between the lines of their latest interview with the Telegraph.
Ms Harlow, Senior Vice President of Smart Devices, said that the new phones, the Lumia 920 and a lower-price 820, were not the only chance Nokia had to prove it could still compete with rivals such as Samsung and Apple. “This is a step in the journey,” she said. “This characterisation that it is the last step is not reality. These are two devices; they’re not all the devices that we’ll base on Windows Phone 8. This is our strategy and it’s a journey; there’s not one moment in time that defines everything.”
The Lumia 820 does not bring PureView to the table though it brings windows phone 8 and many of the new imaging samples from the Lumia 920. Personally, I would have expected PureView to have arrived in the Lumia 820 in addition to the Lumia 920. I think, I am much like the everyday public in my understanding of PureView as the new camera technology from Nokia and as such I would expect to see it in all their smartphones.
However, let us take a look at the bigger picture. Windows Phone 8 has yet to be demonstrated to the public. What little we have seen to-date surrounds the personalisaton of the home screen.
Secondly, no date of release has been announced for either smartphones and no indicated of how much they will cost.
This is a situation that needs remedying. A product should be announced with a launch date and the costs of the devices.
Thirdly, how will Nokia convince consumers to move to the new Windows Phone 8 ecosystem after leaving Windows Phone 7 by the way side. This may not be how Nokia perceives the case but it is how I and others view it. I cannot recommend a Windows Phone 7 device to friends or members of my family when I am aware that no firm commitment or resolution has been released about what the future holds for windows phone 7 devices. In accordance with the problem of windows phone 7, I cannot recommend windows phone 8 to friends or relatives for fear of the same thing happening in another 12 months.
So, in essence I would say that I am disappointed in what came out of Nokia World 2012 today. I expected so much more. I genuinely feel that Nokia is holding back the best for MWC 2013 (Mobile World Congress) next year. If this is the case, shouldn’t Nokia World be the prime position to release your flagship products or is it a case that Nokia World will disappear altogether?
To close this article would I buy the Nokia Lumia 920? I would, if it were considerably cheaper than the present Nokia 808. The camera imaging tricks are too interesting for me to miss. The phone is too large for me on a day-to-day basis as I do not have huge hands. However, I do use a tablet and I could see the Lumia 920 replacing that position. In addition, I there is no other platform that offers as much as the Nokia Exclusive applications, in particular Nokia Maps, Nokia Music and Nokia Reader.
We cannot finish this article without saying a word or two about ‘fakeagate‘, the case of Nokia being caught red-handed using questionable methods of video and camera footage for the advertisements of the Lumia 920 capabilities. Nokia is not new to the phone industry nor that of journalists, those with a keen eye and members of the public. It was inevitable that any discrepancy would be found out. I am rather surprised that Nokia did not think carefully about their responsibility to the industry and to the public in representing themselves. Nokia has since offered an apology on their website. However, there continues to be misrepresentations from other members of their team. In a recent article on mynokiablog, Damian Dinning tweet is shown as following:
Here, Damien states that the shots are genuine despite the contradiction by Nokia’s team on their Nokia Conversation page.
The public needs to be presented with one concisive lead and not confusing information.
I look forward to MWC 2012 and to the introduction of a real flagship to celebrate from Nokia. I have no doubts of their capabilities in producing such a product. I just wish the timing were now to give other manufacturers some real competition. I do not think that Nokia is quite there yet for any one of them to feel particuarly uncomfortable when they are stood up against the Lumia 920.
As a last thought which I only remembered this morning after writing this article yesterday, what has happened to Windows Phone 7.8 update for the present Lumia range?