Nokia’s Stephen Elop Outlines Windows Phone Release, Talks Strategy

In an interview, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who had made radical changes to the world’s leading phone-maker since taking over the helm, has outlined Nokia’s Windows Phone 7 release strategy. Elop says that the company’s debut Windows Phone 7 handset will be coming in the fourth quarter of this year, and would be released in succession of one country after another rather than a simultaneous launch.

As Elop as a former Microsft executive who had made his way to Nokia and radically steered the phone-maker from its Symbian OS to Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 operating system, there has been consistent rumor that Microsoft would acquire Nokia, similar to the Google-Motorola announcement, and Elop continues to deny such speculations, saying that Nokia will forge its own path independently.

So now that Nokia will be utilizing the same OS as many of its big-named rivals–HTC, LG, Samsung, Huawei, and others–the company will need to not only work together with Microsoft on Windows Phone 7, but to also be able to differentiate its handset from rival manufacturers. The deal with Microsoft, announced in February, gave Nokia complete access over Windows Phone 7 code, a move that Microsoft had not, and is not, granting to other licensee of its mobile OS. According to Elop, Nokia isn’t just working on the smartphone hardware, but also is influencing Windows Phone 7 software development, and the Nokia CEO says that we’ll see the fruit of that work beginning with Apollo.

Apollo is believed to be the next major version of the Windows Phone platform after Windows Phone Mango. Between Mango and Apollo, Microsoft is believed to be delivering a minor OS release called Tango that is aimed at taking Windows Phone to low-end markets and would generally not affect the high-end phones that we know today. Tango’s move would help Nokia, which has strong reach in developing countries, deliver Windows Phone to that demographic and would allow Microsoft to compete with entry-level offerings from Android.

In addition with working with Microsoft, Elop says that Nokia will also offer differentiated experience. Though it’s unclear what that may be at this time, Nokia has offered its own services with its Symbian platform, and some of those services–such as Nokia Maps for navigation–may be ported to Windows Phone 7.

You can view the full video interview with the Nokia CEO here.

Via: My Nokia Blog