Crunch time looms for firm’s new Windows strategy
Storm clouds are thought to be gathering over Finnish phone manufacturer Nokia as it braces itself for its Q3 results tomorrow [18th October 2012] when results are expected to be weak.
Analysts will be looking to see just how poor Nokia’s performance has been in the period, especially for sales of smartphones which are expected to be sluggish despite the introduction of new Lumia handsets based on the Windows Phone operating system.
Next month the struggling manufacturer’s newest Lumia handsets the 920 and 820 are due to be introduced, further marking Nokia’s transition away from Symbian as its primary smartphone platform.
But behind the scenes analysts expect Nokia to report a further drop in global smartphone sales, shipping around 83 million devices annually compared to the 98 million target that the company had set for itself.
If, as predicted, Nokia’s Symbian sales are again disappointing, then the introduction of Windows phones could be even more crucial to the company’s fate – leading either to a reversal of fortune or possibly oblivion.
Earlier this year Nokia lost the top slot as the world’s largest handset maker by volume to Samsung, with sales of its Symbian phones declining faster than hoped.
While it is still trying to regain its footing in emerging markets through low-end Windows Phone devices and its Asha family of touchscreen devices aimed at youngsters, most investors will be looking at how many Lumia devices it sold in Q3, having doubled sales to four million in the second quarter of 2012. If that momentum isn’t continued in tomorrow’s Q3 results then investors are likely to punish the manufacturer.
One analyst, Neil Mawson of Strategy Analytics, was quoted as saying: “The opportunity is still open but the gap is getting smaller. Nokia has to show some signs that the Windows Phone portfolio can assist more in its recovery.”
On the New York Stock Exchange last night [16th October 2012] Nokia’s shares closed at $2.82 compared to a year high of $7.38.