Watch Nokia’s Lumia WP8 Event And Motorola/Verizon Event Live Here

September has turned out to be major tech month with quite a lot of big companies holding major tech events. Samsung started September by announcing the Galaxy Note 2 and the first Windows Phone 8 handset, the Ativ S. Today, Nokia will be announcing its hotly anticipated next-generation WP8 running Lumia handsets with PureView technology.

Along with Nokia, Motorola is also holding an event today to announce the much leaked RAZR M and RAZR HD. Tomorrow, Amazon will be holding an event to announce a new version of the Kindle Fire.

Next week, the mobile industry will see new standards being set when Apple announces the next-generation iPhone along with iOS6.

Motorola will once again be holding an event in New York on September 18th, this time with Intel, to announce a new Intel powered Android smartphone. This will be the first time a major Android OEM will be using an Intel SoC in their Android smartphone.

On the very next day, i.e. on September 19th, which is again a Wednesday, HTC also has an event scheduled in New York where the company will presumably announce some new WP8 handsets. There is still no confirmation whether the Taiwanese maker will be announcing some new Android based devices or not at the event.

While Apple and HTC won’t be live streaming their events, Nokia and Motorola will be doing a live webcast of their events today. The Nokia Lumia WP8 event can be watched live from here, but make sure your browser has the required Silverlight plugin installed.

The Motorola event, thankfully, will be streamed live on the company’s YouTube channel. The event is scheduled to start in 11 hours from now, and can be watched live from here.

 

Nokia Unveils The Purity Pro Wireless Stereo Headset

Nokia has just announced its latest addition to its Purity series of headsets, the Purity Pro Wireless Stereo headset at IFA in Berlin.

The new Purity Pro Wireless Stereo headset provide wire-free music experience thanks to Bluetooth. The headsets also pack NFC for one-touch connectivity with NFC enabled smartphones.

The Purity Pro Wireless headset have been made by Monster, the creator and founder of ‘Beats by Dr. Dre’, and features noise cancellation and will be available in a bunch of colors including red, yellow, white and black. The Bluetooth on the headsets are automatically

Monster CEO Noel Lee said: “With our Purity Pro, users can now enjoy unprecedented audio performance and advanced capabilities, with all the added benefits of a pure and seamless wireless connection.”

The Purity Pro wireless headset will be available sometime in the fourth quarter of 2012 for around €299. Readers can find more information about Nokia’s Purity Pro Wireless headset over at its official product page.

Nokia ‘Belle Refresh’ Firmware Update Rolling Out Now

Symbian Nokia OS might be dead, but the company continues providing software updates to its existing user-base. Starting from today, the Finnish company has started rolling out a new firmware update for its Belle devices, some of which are nearly 2 years old, dubbed Belle Refresh.

The new firmware update brings with it new widgets including one for taking quick notes, improved performance and stability, an enhanced web browser with support for HTML5 based web apps, improved music player, better support for flash videos and some under-the-hood bug-fixes. There are some Imaging related exclusive apps bundled in the update for the Nokia N8 as well.

The update will only be available for the first generation Symbian^3 devices from the Finnish handset maker including the N8, C7, the E7 ‘Communicator’, C6-01, the Oro, E6 (software version >111) and finally, the Nokia 500. While updates for all the phones are already being rolled out in certain regions of the world, the update for the Nokia 500 will follow in the next few weeks.

Via – AllAboutSymbian

HP’s Second Attempt at Mobile Headed by Alberto Torres

With every major IT giant out there going into the mobile business, HP could not stand back and enjoy the show. Although, HP has had a horrid experience with the mobile over the last few years, perhaps it has learnt from its mistakes and wants to get back into the mobile sector with a fresh start. It has already re-branded the Palm business (or whatever was remaining of it) to Gram attempting to give it a new focus. Palm could boast of software that was ahead of its time and some groundbreaking products (the Treo) too, but it never had strong foundation stones. With Gram, HP is starting over with Palm.

hp_logo

That sounds good, isn’t it? But wait. Confusion started a few days ago, when HP circulated an internal memo talking about another mobile division inside its company, the only difference being that this one will deal with hardware instead. The group is being called the “Mobility Global Business Unit” and it will be headed by Alberto Torres, who was the head of MeeGo at Nokia. At this new unit, Torres will be the Senior Vice-President. According to HP, this group will focus on:

Additional segments and categories where we believe we can offer differentiated value to our customers.

Was it a wise decision to kill the existing Palm business and instead, bring out separate hardware and software product lines and teams? It is too early to speculate on the future prospects of this strategy. Surely, HP has something in mind when it is going through such a massive change, or is it just a shot in the dark?

(Via: The Verge)

Nokia Continues Asset Liquidation; Qt to Digia, Patents to Vringo

With the Q2 earning numbers still looming, Nokia has been trimming weight like a boss and there seems to be nothing they won’t do to get some greenbacks in their pockets.

Digia, the company who agreed to licensed Qt from Nokia back in 2011, has just taken full custody of the red-headed stepchild project. That is, they’re going to acquire all Qt software technologies AND Qt business from both what Nokia was working on, and what Trolltech was doing. While Nokia had great dreams for the cross-platform UI framework, they never really managed to actually make a dent in the mobile platform race with Qt. They agreed to leave KDE alone, and in the event that everything hit the fan, they could essentially be ousted and KDE could release Qt under the BSD license. This agreement holds true with Digia, as they stated in a news post;

We also are committed to continuing the special relationship Qt has with the KDE community via the KDE Free Qt Foundation. We believe that this symbiosis is valuable for everyone involved.

Digia plans to release Qt for iOS, Android, and Windows 8, on the double. Nokia has lagged around with Qt long enough and it’s nice to see that Digia is looking towards the future. Hopefully they can get to work with the Jolla Mobile folk and hit the ground running.

 

Vringo has also been in talks with Nokia, but this is for the purchase of over 500 patents and patent applications. If you’ve never heard of Vringo, they describe themselves as “engaged in the innovation, development and monetization of mobile technologies and intellectual property.”. If you HAVE heard of Vringo, it’s likely because either you, or somebody you know, was dumb enough to subscribe to their premium video ringtone service. A fool and his money are soon parted.

It’s quite clear that Vringo is acting as a middleman for patent usage royalties, and possible upcoming patent infringement lawsuits. Apple and Samsung can’t have all the fun, can they? It’s said the patents are worth roughly $22 million, and Vringo sold off $31 million worth of their stock in order to pay Nokia.

Hopefully Nokia has plan which consists of more than “sell it all off, let Microsoft lead the way”. Even making the first Windows Phone 8 device likely won’t save them if the asset auction continues and the board is blinded by the incoming cash flux, not realizing they are losing their roots.

Source: Digia, Vringo

Nokia Launches The Asha 305 And Asha 311 Touchscreen Phones In India

Back in July, Nokia announced two new budget smartphones in its popular Asha family. The Nokia Asha 305 features a 3 inch touchscreen display along with the Easy Swap dual SIM technology. On the other hand, Nokia Asha 311 is the company’s cheapest touchscreen phone with 1 GHz processor. Both the handsets run on the Symbian S40 Operating System. These devices are pre-loaded with 15 levels of Angry Birds as well as the Nokia Browser 2.0, which uses Nokia’s cloud technology to reduce data consumption by up to 90%.

Mr. Viral Oza, Director Marketing, Nokia India, said,
“The Nokia Asha family has received tremendous consumer response. With a variety of form factors across price points and innovations such as Nokia Browser, Nokia Maps and DRM free Nokia Music, Nokia Asha family has triggered data consumption habits in first time data users. With the launch of Nokia Asha Touch range, we are strengthening our range of ‘mobile internet’ devices that offer these exciting experiences to the consumers.”

Nokia Asha 305:

Nokia Asha 305 features a 3.0 inch WQVGA resistive touch screen display, Symbian S40 OS, Asha Touch UI, 2 megapixel camera, Nokia Life, Bluetooth 2.1, Micro USB 2.0, GPRS/EDGE connectivity, 3.5 mm headset jack, music player, FM Radio, loud and clear inbuilt speaker, 10 MB internal memory, 32 GB expandable memory, Micro SD card slot, 2 GB Micro SD card bundled, 2.0 mm charger connector, up to 22 days of stand-by time, up to 14 hours of talk-time and a 1110 mAh battery. This handset measures 110.3 mm x 53.8 mm x 12.8 mm and weighs just 98.3g.

Nokia Asha 311:

The Nokia Asha 311 features a 3.0 inch WQVGA scratch resistant capacitive glass screen with polarization filters, Symbian S40 OS, Asha Touch UI, 1 GHz processor, 3.2 megapixel camera, GPRS/EDGE connectivity, 3.5 mm headset jack, Music player, FM Radio, internet radio, Nokia Life, 2.0 mm charger connector, Bluetooth 2.1, Micro USB 2.0, 256 MB internal memory, 32 GB expandable memory, Micro SD card slot, 2 GB Micro SD card bundled, WLAN, 3G Connectivity, Accelerometer, Proximity sensor, Ambient Light sensor, Nokia Browser, up to 29 days of stand-by time, up to 14 hours of talk-time and a 1110 mAh battery. This handset measures 106 mm x 52 mm x 12.9 mm and weighs just 95g.

Nokia Asha 305 and Asha 311 allow you to stay in touch with your friends and family with email and chat on the most popular instant messaging services such as Twitter and Facebook. The Nokia Asha 305 comes with a price tag of just Rs.5,029, while the Nokia Asha 311 is available for Rs.7,139 in India.

Nokia E5 Gets A Firmware Update; Reminds People Of Its Existence

Back in February this year, Nokia did the unthinkable and ditched Symbian for Microsoft’s Windows Phone. In a letter to its employees, Nokia’s CEO, Stephen Elop, mentioned Symbian as “the burning platform.” Nokia made it clear that going forward it is going to focus only on WP based phone, and that users should not expect Symbian phones from the company anymore. The company did, however, promise software updates for Symbian handsets until 2016 so as to provide some peace of mind to the owners of its last Symbian handset, the Pure View 808.

The company did release quite a few firmware and Symbian updates for its Symbian^3 devices, including the Belle update for the N8 and the Belle FP1 update for the Nokia 701. Today, however Nokia has started rolling out a firmware update for a nearly forgotten Symbian S60v3 running handset, the Nokia E5.

The firmware update does not bring any major changes or features, but does bring with it some performance and stability improvements. In addition to this, it also includes an updated Web Browser and Email client, which should hopefully improve the speed of these apps.

The firmware update (V101) is already live in certain regions of the world, and can be installed on the E5 either via OTA or by using Nokia’s PC Suite app.

Via – AllAboutSymbian

Nokia Working on Carrier Partnerships in Europe for Windows Phone 8

Nokia is apparently planning to enter partnerships with multiple European carriers and share revenue with them for sales of its upcoming Windows Phone 8 handsets to create dedicated support channels for its phones. It plans to enter those markets by partnering with top carriers like Apple does with AT&T and Verizon in the U.S., instead of just selling phones which work with all carriers.

By offering revenue shares to carriers, Nokia could get them to back its devices by giving them a stake in the success of its Windows Phone 8 phones, which going by the rather lackluster showing of its Windows Phone 7 devices, would probably hardly rack up many sales.

One of the main reasons why Windows Phone has failed to gain much traction yet is because iPhones sell themselves while most carriers and store salesmen back Android devices due to their affordability and familiarity. By giving them a lucrative stake in the success of its Windows Phone devices, Nokia could turn over some carriers to its side, and gain some much needed traction to get to the tipping point, after which Windows Phone 8 devices would start selling themselves.

Nokia has already tried this in the U.S. with AT&T and the Lumia 900, and has seen some success with it. It wouldn’t be much of a leap for it to do in Europe as well.

Nokia could be the first device maker to launch a Windows Phone 8 smartphone, which could give it a slight lead over other competitors and an initial boost in sales. It lost nearly a billion dollars last quarter, and we expect it to continue to bleed cash in the coming quarters until it eventually gets back in the game, it at all it does.

via Reuters

Will Nokia Make the First Windows Phone 8 Device?

Nokia has had a very disappointing quarter in terms of earnings. It lost nearly $1 billion in Q2 2012, on revenue of around $9.3 billion. While it sold 4 million Lumia units, it still lags way behind the top Android manufacturers like Samsung, as well as Apple.

In the post-earnings conference call, he may have hinted that Nokia may be the first handset maker to build and launch a Windows Phone 8 device, given its close ties with Microsoft.

When asked about it, Elop didn’t say yes directly, but he did say that Windows Phone 8 has been demonstrated only on a Nokia device to date, and that they have a very close relationship with Microsoft, which is unlike what anyone else has.

Nokia has every reason to be pissed at Microsoft, since it has committed to Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform exclusively, but Microsoft is apparently planning to launch its own smartphone, just like it launched the Surface tablet.

Its current Lumia handset sales might even take a hit since Microsoft announced that the current generation Windows Phones won’t be upgradeable to Windows Phone 8.

However, if Nokia is the first device maker to launch a Windows Phone 8 device, that could give it a major advantage over the other makers, and could help it boost device sales.

In the call, Elop also stated that Nokia will continue to sell Windows Phone 7 devices even after the launch of Windows Phone 8, but position them in the budget segment to compete with low end Android phones.

via TechCrunch

Nokia Reports Q2 2012 Earnings; Loses $1 Billion

The much awaited earnings (not really) of Nokia in the second quarter of 2012 have been released, and they are disappointing. Nokia has reported an operating loss of more than $1 billion, with revenues dropping to just $9.3 billion, down nearly 20% year-over-year.

Net sales have been down across the board, with both smartphones and mobile sales showing a decline.

It sold nearly 4 million Lumia units worldwide in Q2 2012, which is in line with consensus estimates, but much lower than its competitors on Android. Even the feature phone unit volumes increased marginally to 73 million units, but Nokia hardly makes much profit on those.

It ended the quarter with nearly $5.2 billion in net cash.

Stephen Elop, Nokia’s CEO, said:

“Nokia is taking action to manage through this transition period. While Q2 was a difficult quarter, Nokia employees are demonstrating their determination to strengthen our competitiveness, improve our operating model and carefully manage our financial resources.

We shipped four million Lumia Smartphones in Q2, and we plan to provide updates to current Lumia products over time, well beyond the launch of Windows Phone 8. We believe the Windows Phone 8 launch will be an important catalyst for Lumia. During the quarter, we demonstrated stability in our feature phone business, and enhanced our competitiveness with the introduction of our first full touch Asha devices. In Location & Commerce, our business with auto-industry customers continued to grow, and we made good progress establishing our location-based platform with businesses like Yahoo!, Flickr, and Bing. We continued to strengthen our patent portfolio and filed more patents in the first half of 2012 than any previous six month period since 2007. And, we are encouraged that Nokia Siemens Networks returned to underlying operating profitability through strong execution of its focused strategy.”

At the rate Nokia is incurring operating losses, it seems like Microsoft’s cash infusions are the only thing keeping it alive.

It needs to figure out a way to make money off its Windows Phone powered Lumia devices or face oblivion. At this point, the latter seems more likely.

While it remains a leader in mobile shipments, it needs to focus on becoming a leader in the smartphone space, which offers much higher margins.

Maybe it should shift to a multi-platform strategy, and hedge its bets on Windows phone by building devices powered by Android too. After all, if Microsoft isn’t exclusive to Nokia, why should it be exclusive to Microsoft’s platform?

via Nokia