Nokia, HMD Global, Leaks
Nokia is coming back, but is there still a market for it? Image credit: Digital Trends.

Nokia (NASDAQ: NOK) will return to the mobile phone market through HMD global. According to a Nokia executive, four new gadgets are on their way, two phablets and two smartphones. According to the rumors, they would be arriving at the stores late 2016 or in the first months of 2017. 

Reports say the two Nokia-branded Android handsets are going to appear first, with some rumored specs already circulating. In turn, information regarding the other two devices is unknown for the time being.

Supposedly, the phablets, one small (5.2 inches) and one large (5.5 inches), have metal bodies which are characteristic of Nokia’s classical designs. Its cameras are said to be the most sensitive ever after years of graphene development effort worth $1.35 billion. Touch and hover interaction, with multiple sensors to respond to finger gestures, would be another innovation.

Other features include water and dust resistance up to IP68, fingerprint sensors, and OLED displays with QHD (2,560 x 1,440 pixels) resolution. For those who wonder what IP68 is, it means Nokia’s new smartphones are completely protected against dust, and water-resistant in up to 5 feet of water for up to 30 minutes.

The new Nokia handsets would have strong bodies and a soul of Nougat 

The software will reportedly champion a newer and improved version of Nokia’s predictive Z-Launcher, and the latest version of Android, Nougat.

Nokia was the leading mobile phone manufacturer until 2011. Intense competition in the smartphone market and its aging Symbian platform forced the company to sign a partnership with Microsoft that year. Windows Phone 7 replaced Symbian as the primary operating system.

But Nokia never recovered and sold its mobile phone division to Microsoft in April 2014, which became Microsoft Mobile. The Nokia brand was no longer on Lumia smartphones in October.

Microsoft, however, didn’t come out on top either as the purchase was a complete failure. Bill Gates’ company took an impairment charge of $7.6 billion and by 2016 Lumia’s sales were down 73%.

Will HMD Global succeed where Microsoft failed?

Subsequently, Microsoft sold part of the phone business to HMD global. The latter then signed a licensing agreement with Nokia giving HMD exclusivity on the Nokia brand.

The remainder of Microsoft Mobile, including factories, was acquired by FIH Mobile, a subsidiary of Taiwan-based Foxconn, that will manufacture and distribute HMD’s Nokia branded mobile phones.

Microsoft’s sale to HMD and FIH Mobile amounted to $350 million. HMD vowed to invest $500 million in the marketing of the new Nokia products around the world over the next three years.

The first batch of them may be released in 2016 or pushed to 2017, depending on market conditions.

Source: Digital Trends‎