Nokia CEO: we're in no hurry to join the tablet market

By on April 28, 2011, 11:06 AM
Nokia is in no rush to release a tablet. Nokia CEO Stephen Elop was asked by YLE TV in Finland when his company would release a device in the hyped form factor, and here's what he said:

There are now over 200 different tablets on the marketplace, only one of them is doing really well. And, my challenge to the team is I don't wanna be the 201st tablet on the market that you can't tell from all of the others. We have to take a uniquely Nokia prospective and so the teams are working very hard on something that would be differentiating relative to everything else that's going on in the market.

Q. "So you're not in a hurry?"
A: "We're always in a hurry to do the right things, but we're mostly in a hurry to do the right thing."

MeeGo was created last year by the merger of Nokia and Intel's Linux-based platforms. Although Nokia dropped MeeGo and Symbian for Windows Phone earlier this year, that strategy only applied to smartphones, not tablets. At the time, the company said it was planning on shipping at least one MeeGo-related product later this year, and we've always expected it to be a tablet.

Nokia said that MeeGo was to become an open-source mobile operating system project with increased emphasis on longer-term market exploration of next-generation devices, platforms, and user experiences. Earlier this year, pictures of a Nokia MeeGo tablet prototype leaked out. It's not clear at this point if the project was unsuccessful, if the prototype was scrapped, or if Nokia simply decided that it was not ready to enter the tablet market.

Given the Finnish company's new partnership with Microsoft, it's possible that Nokia has decided to wait for Windows 8, which is yet another big blow to MeeGo. Windows 8 is expected at the end of 2012 at the earliest, which would mean that if Nokia chooses this path, it will be entering the tablet market quite late. On the one hand, we think that Nokia needs to focus on pushing out its first Windows phones but on the other hand we're not sure if it should be following Microsoft's "wait and see" strategy so closely.

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