If you’re a Nokia fan as I profess to be I’m sure by now you’ve read the bad news — check here or here if you haven’t. I’d like to think that this a savvy move by the Finnish company to play the markets a bit — adjust expectations downwards then over-deliver when the time comes. Sadly, their stock price doesn’t indicate any prior success with such things.
It’s an odd thing for yours truly to witness the Linux community, usually somewhat measured in their praise for any one thing, collectively wet themselves over Android. This isn’t at all a knock against Google’s mobile OS (or the Linux community, necessarily), but quite the opposite — for FLOSS phone users Android is their saviour from the iPhone.
And these are the people that Nokia needs to reach. Immediately.
The N900 showed great promise but with the announcement of MeeGo it has effectively become a living fossil. Again, I’m not knocking the N900 — it’s an amazingly capable device — but there’s no denying that at this point nobody’s going to be buying it in great numbers because it won’t support MeeGo, and has therefore become a legacy product.
- a terminal
- a proper package manager
- SyncML (which, for the moment, Android does not fully support)
I’m hopeful that Nokia’s first MeeGo device will offer the same.
I know it’s on the way, but I wish Nokia would look a little further into the future and see the end-game to all of this. I think it’s inevitable that mobile handsets — at least the high-end ones — will become commodity items able to take on the open mobile OS of your choice, just like your desktop and laptop computer.
Standardizing internal components would make Nokia handsets more alluring to everyone, even if (gasp) some users wanted to run Android on a Nokia device. Likewise, making MeeGo for mobiles widely available as an installable ROM would mean that at least a few brave souls would try to install it on the Android device they already own.
At this point it’s not even a question of competing with Android, but rather to avoid having Google eat Nokia’s lunch altogether in the high-end mobile space. The clock is ticking…