Marko Ahtisaari, Head of Nokia Design: Future Windows Phones will have NFC, possibly wireless charging

marko

When Nokia reported their Q4 2011 financial results last month there was one bit of news in there that we glossed over. Marko Ahtisaari, son of Martti Ahtisaari, former President of Finland, had his title upgraded from Head of Nokia Design to Executive Vice President of Nokia Design. His responsibilities will stay the same, he’ll just bring home more bacon. Anyway, Marko recently sat down with The Guardian and let out some details about the future of Nokia’s devices. Let’s start with the obvious: Near Field Communication (NFC) will be huge. We’ve been saying that forever now, but because the Head of Design at a huge multinational corporation said it in an interview we have to stand up and pay attention. Next up, Marko asks why do devices even have connectors in the first place? He’s talking about wireless charging of course, another thing we’ve been covering for ages, and have been hoping would end up in a device before anyone in our office dies of old age.

But seriously, there are good nuggets in there, and we encourage you to read the entire thing. Marko acknowledges that the Lumia 800 shouldn’t have shipped with a door covering the microUSB port. He also admits that his goal is to build devices that put you back in the real world, meaning devices that take up less of your attention. That’s almost the exact opposite of Apple’s philosophy where they want you to love your device and constantly fondle it, much to the annoyance of your significant other.

“Touchscreens as user interfaces are immersive. My goal is give people their head up – give people a UI that’s less immersive, so that we can be more present for each other, and more present for the environment that we’re in right here.”

What worries us is will Microsoft’s design teams respect Nokia’s design teams should they happen to come up with a better way to perform X, Y, or Z task? That’s the big question here since Nokia, as far as we can tell, is just another hardware maker at this point. A pretty hardware maker admittedly, but these days it’s the software people judge the most.

Update: Forget about the annoying door on the Lumia 800, this is the same guy who designed the Nokia X3 Touch and Type, the only T9 device we know of that has the *, #, and 0 keys to the right of the traditional nine dialing keys instead of directly underneath.

  • Guest

    Are you actually capable of writing a Nokia related article nowadays that doesn’t end on a negative point? You are fast becoming Eldar junior! :D

    • http://www.intomobile.com/ Stefan Constantinescu

      Just providing a counter argument to the drove of articles pointing to this Guardian interview and claiming that Ahrisaari is some kind of design god.

      • Guest

        Poor excuse. Ever heard the term “dare to be different”? They had a touch & type model out at the same time for people that wanted a normal layout.

        It’s sad that you feel the need to put the boot in at every opportunity, it’s fast turning you into the kind of joke that people view Eldar as now.

        • http://www.intomobile.com/ Stefan Constantinescu

          Can you blame Eldar and I and a whole host of other people for being upset that Nokia’s stock price is in the tank, that they’re selling less phones than ever before, that they can’t come out with something consumers lust after … and the list goes on and on.

          It’s not that I don’t like Nokia, it’s that I know it’s filled to the brim with talent. Talent that can’t do jack shit because management is fucking things up left and right.

          • Guest

             Then report negative things constructively rather than coming across as a pair of trolls with axes to grind.

            Biased troll-esq reporting is a sure fire way to lose sites like this fans, even fans that also aren’t happy with Nokia.

          • http://www.intomobile.com/ Stefan Constantinescu

            OK, rewrite this article then.

            “Nokia Head of Design says NFC is the future. Says Lumia 800 has too many moving parts. Says wireless charging would be cool. Doesn’t want to force Microsoft to do anything to Windows Phone.”

        • http://www.intomobile.com/ Stefan Constantinescu

          Can you blame Eldar and I and a whole host of other people for being upset that Nokia’s stock price is in the tank, that they’re selling less phones than ever before, that they can’t come out with something consumers lust after … and the list goes on and on.

          It’s not that I don’t like Nokia, it’s that I know it’s filled to the brim with talent. Talent that can’t do jack shit because management is fucking things up left and right.

  • Anonymous

    Sad.

    Nokia promised NFC to *all* of their phones in 2011. That was in 2010.

    Several companies have already launched wireless charging.

    You can buy a universal PowerKiss charger in many places for 20EUR.

    Where is the innovation Nokia?

    Nokia is now already slow in rolling out even the features that they competitors have launched.

    Where are the unique value propositions? That Nokia premium?

    I can’t see it anywhere anymore.

  • Chris P

    All I hear is Peter Skillman. I bet Ahrisaari just ripped some of his thoughts and spouted them as his own.

  • TheLensPope

    Have to agree that there is considerable talent lurking in Nokia – how they produced a phone as good as the N9 when going through the upheavals of the past few years is a credit to all concerned. However, even after the decimation of entire departments, the good people are still woefully outnumbered by talentless freeloaders – clueless international middle management, home at 15:45 every day locals, and rapacious externals still trying to screw Nokia for all it’s worth even in its time of crisis. On the IT and marketing sides, they could still sack 50% of the employees without suffering any loss of productivity or capability.

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