Nokia Oyj

Nokia
Nokia

Nokia Unveils $68 Mobile Phones for Speedy Internet Access.
Nokia Oyj (NOK1V), the second-biggest maker of mobile phones, unveiled cheaper handsets today to meet consumer demand for fast connections to the Internet.

The Nokia 207 and 208 are candybar-shaped phones that let users connect to speedier third-generation networks, the company said in a statement. They come with Nokia’s Xpress Browser that compresses data and will include social applications such as WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter. Both handsets will cost $68 and are expected to start shipping this quarter. The third model is a dual SIM version of the Nokia 208.

The company said the new models are its “most affordable 3G devices yet.” As Nokia strives to catch up with Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. in smartphones priced at more than $500, the Espoo, Finland-based company is also trying to boost sales of more basic handsets that sell for a fraction of the price, a category that accounts for most of its device business.

Nokia’s first-quarter sales slumped 20 percent as competition from Asian manufacturers of phones that run Google Inc.’s Android software hurt demand for the company’s cheaper models. Chief Executive Officer Stephen Elop said the decline in its mobile-phone business was primarily caused by competition and Nokia was preparing “aggressive moves” to respond. It unveiled new software to power its Asha mobile phones in May.
Cash Sources

Nokia’s shares fell 0.5 percent to 2.97 euros at 1:22 p.m. in Helsinki, paring the advance to 1.4 percent this year and valuing the company at 11.1 billion euros ($14.4 billion).

Of the 336 million handsets Nokia sold last year, only about 10 percent were smartphones. Basic models accounted for 31 percent of Nokia’s revenue, versus 18 percent for smartphones. Network equipment made up most of the balance.

Nokia reported April 18 that it sold about 11 million fewer mobile phones in the first quarter than analysts had projected, with basic phones plunging 21 percent to 55.8 million units. A failure to revive the low-end business would leave Nokia without an important source of cash to develop devices to challenge competitors.

The phonemaker this week said it plans to buy Siemens AG (SIE)’s share in the six-year Nokia Siemens Networks joint venture for 1.7 billion euros, giving it full access to the phone-equipment maker’s cashflow.

Nokia Siemens today won a contract worth at least $200 million to build a fourth-generation wireless system for Russia’s biggest mobile-phone company OAO Mobile TeleSystems.

PureView smartphone

Nokia, the mobile giant struggling to catch up with rivals, may have an ace up its sleeve. The company set the benchmark for smartphone cameras with its 808 PureView smartphone last year, which came with a 41MP camera and ran on Symbian operating system.

However, the company soon began focussing its energies on Windows Phone-powered Lumia series and Symbian was retired. Now, word on the street is that the company is working on a Lumia phone that will have a 41MP camera sensor.
Previously, there had been some speculation about an upcoming Lumia phone with 41MP camera, codenamed EOS, but the rumour mill went silent after Mobile World Congress in February. Now, MyNokiaBlog has said that a source with access to the company’s plans has said Nokia is currently testing EOS on quad-core as well as dual-core chipsets.

The model was said to be tested on Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-core chip, but poor battery performance made it an unviable option. Therefore, the company is going with a dual-core processor for this phone, according to the report.

Talking about the camera, the report says that the company is using a 41MP sensor similar to the one seen in 808 PureView, but will have optical image stabilisation and variable aperture lens. The company will tweak the interface of the camera app in this phone and include Xenon as well as LED flash units. Nokia is also testing 2K and 4K recording for the device, though the report says this feature is not supported currently.

Nokia EOS is said to have an AMOLED display panel with 1280x768p resolution, though the size of the screen is not clear yet. Other features confirmed by the source include FM radio, microSD support and microHDMI port. The report also says that the phone will initially be launched only for AT&T in US, and the global launch will follow 1-3 months afterwards.

Lumia 920 is the only Windows Phone 8 smartphone to have PureView imaging technology, but features a smaller 8.7MP sensor. Nokia is also said to be working on a Windows RT tablet, which will rival the likes of Apple iPad, Google Nexus 10, Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and Microsoft Surface.

TV Service

Dish Offers to Buy Sprint, Joining Phone to TV Service.
Smartphones, tablets and computers all pull data from the Internet, but people still pay two different bills: the high-speed connection they get at home and the wireless connection they get outside. Dish Network, the pay-TV operator, wants to bridge that gap.

Dish Network said on Monday that it had submitted a $25.5 billion bid for Sprint Nextel, the nation’s third-largest wireless carrier after Verizon Wireless and AT&T. It says that a merger between the two companies could roll television, high-speed Internet and cellphone services into a single package that would be faster and more affordable for consumers.
“It really means that we’re going to give consumers what every consumer wants,” Charles W. Ergen, Dish Network’s chairman, said in a phone interview. “They want broadband and video and voice in their home and want the exact same thing outside the home. And they want it to look and feel and priced outside the same as it is inside.”

Dish Network’s bid is an effort to scuttle the planned takeover of Sprint Nextel by the Japanese telecommunications company SoftBank, which agreed in October to acquire a 70 percent stake in the American cellphone operator in a complex deal worth about $20 billion.

Under the terms of its proposed bid, Dish Network said it was offering a cash-and-stock deal worth about 13 percent more than SoftBank’s bid.

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