We’re barely two months into 2011 and Ukko Lappalainen, Vice President at Nokia, is saying that the recently available E7 “will have the biggest impact on our sales of any handset in 2011”. Let that soak in for a moment. Nokia is essentially saying that a device they announced back in September 2010, 5 months ago, will be their most important sales generator for the whole of 2011. More important than any of the low end handsets that will be shipped to emerging markets, more important than any other high end device we’ve yet to hear about, which at this point various sources tell me will become available in Q4 2011, and more important than any announcement that’s due to take place between now and when you’re with your friends counting down to 2012.
We can’t help but be let down by this piece of news, but it also makes plenty of sense. Stephen Elop, the new CEO of Nokia, has only been in charge since September. The changes he plans to make to the Finnish firm are not even going to be revealed until this coming Friday. Nokia has over 100,000 employees if you include the Nokia Siemens folks, so getting that big of a ship to change direction isn’t the easiest thing in the world to do.
What about MeeGo? Isn’t that supposed to be what saves the company? What has Nokia done to prove to both customers and investors that it actually has a fighting chance at competing with Android and Apple’s iOS? And what if the first MeeGo product does land in late 2011, isn’t it supposed to be so hot that it’ll make Nokia more in 3 months than what the E7 can do in a single year? We’re all eager to hear just what the hell Nokia plans on doing to make themselves relevant again. Watching them fumble is painful.