Given all the attention that Nokia’s Windows Phones seem to enjoy, it’s easy to forget that they won’t just be duking it out with Android devices and iPhones. Nokia will also have to compete with fellow Windows Phones, and CEO Stephen Elop already seems to have a strategy worked out
His plan: to gain a foothold in the market and worry about profit margins later.
The way Elop looks at it, the key to Nokia’s Windows Phones making a splash is going to be by moving a lot of units. In a brief interview with Reuters while at a conference in Barcelona, Elop remarked that is Nokia getting aggressive on price in order to meet that goal.
“You see us pricing the devices so that we can get what we think will be a good volume,” he said.
Once Nokia’s devices pick up traction among customers, Nokia plans to create more distinct models and product lines that could bring in more profit. Elop’s plan is already in action in Europe, where the Lumia 710 and 800‘s off-contract price tags are lower than those of other WP7 devices.
While it’ll certainly make Nokia’s options more palatable for certain customers, it’s highly questionable that the same plan would work here in the States where nearly every device comes with a two-year contract and a subsidized price tag. Unless Nokia is willing to let their Windows Phones go for free right out of the gate, competing with companies like Samsung on price may prove difficult.
Though Elop is understandably bullish on his company’s Windows Phones, AT&T’s Glen Lurie sees a bumpy road ahead for the platform as a whole. Lurie, the head of AT&T’s emerging devices division, says that he expects to see “a lot of challenges” for Windows Phone.
“I’m actually a fan of the Windows devices, I’m also very excited about Windows 8 on the tablet devices, but you’re still going to have a lot of people competing for that space.”
He isn’t kidding: the mobile platform wars show no sign of slowing down, and Windows Phone has a lot of ground to make up when compared to industry leaders like Android and iOS. Microsoft has already managed to make some headway though, as a recent report from IDC and Appcelerator show that Windows Phone is slowly picking up traction with developers. In fact, Nokia’s partnership with Microsoft is a key driver for developer interest in certain markets, which will only help Microsoft’s worldwide Windows Phone push.
While Nokia hones their strategy in Europe, we in the United States can only stand by and what to see wait they decide to bring our way. Hopefully Elop has something special up his sleeve for us because Nokia knows firsthand how tough it can be to crack the U.S. market.