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Google: We'd Have Loved to Partner with Nokia

By - Source: Engadget | B 27 comments

With the dust still settling after Nokia and Microsoft’s newly-inked agreement to put Windows Phone 7 on Nokia smartphones, there’s a lot to discuss regarding the decision. One of the more popular questions over the last few days seems to be, “Why not Android?”

At the time of the announcement, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop said he had discussed the possibility with Google but ultimately felt that Nokia could not differentiate itself in the Android market. However, it seems Google was more than eager to welcome Nokia to the Android family. Speaking during his keynote address at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Google CEO Eric Schmidt said that they “would have loved” to have Nokia on board and that they “certainly tried” to convince the lads in Espoo to take Android over Windows 7. However, all is not lost, as Schmidt also revealed that it’s not off the table completely. The CEO said the offer for Nokia to adopt Android at a later date is “still open.”

Speaking to All Things D later that same day, Schmidt said that he and Android chief Andy Rubin had talked quite a bit to Nokia, but declined to say how advanced the talks had been. “I would rather not go into it,” ATD cites him as saying. Schmidt did divulge that Nokia understood the Android operating system pretty well at the time. Though that could be a case of Nokia just doing its homework before an important meeting, it also could mean that Nokia was considering it seriously enough for it to still be on the table for future devices.

Would you consider waiting to buy a Nokia smartphone if you knew the company might enter into a deal with Google for Android-powered devices? Let us know in the comments below!

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  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , February 16, 2011 11:25 PM
    Right, and Apple would have loved to partner with Nokia as well!!
  • 3 Hide
    jimsocks , February 16, 2011 11:48 PM
    starting to get jaded with android updates, or lack thereof.
    and didn't google make fun of nokia after the initial announcement?
    something about 2 turkeys joining forces or something.
    why backtrack.
  • 1 Hide
    vkelman , February 16, 2011 11:56 PM
    I would definitely consider buying Nokia smartphone running Android. Nokia is known for its good hardware. (I would not likely consider buying Nokia WP7 phone.)
    "Nokia could not differentiate itself if using Android phones" is basically a BS: Android allows for incomparable more freedom than WP7, so that Nokia could well differentiate itself by creating customized Android ROMs and by using district hardware. Everybody understands that Microsoft basically bought /bribed Nokia by offering enormous amount of money. Plus, Nokia hopes that Elop has special relationships with Microsoft which would give it some unofficial advantages... It might be a big mistake.
  • 1 Hide
    kronos_cornelius , February 17, 2011 12:13 AM
    Look what Motorola did with the Atrix, why would Nokia not be able to differentiate itself. Nokia will suffer for it lack of confidence.
  • -1 Hide
    CyberAngel , February 17, 2011 12:25 AM
    Nobody makes a bad move when billions of dollars of profit are on stake.
    Me thinks M$ & Nokia are not stupid at all.
    I just sold my apartment and bought cheap stock. After three years of ownership I'm gonna seell them and buy a house with a garage for two cars
  • -2 Hide
    lucky015 , February 17, 2011 1:12 AM
    WP7 will KILL Nokia if they make it fully exclusive, The one thing Nokia are known for is great hardware with a middle of the range OS, People would LOVE to buy a Nokia with Android on it, The hardware people have loved for years with the OS people want in this day and age.
  • -1 Hide
    Yuka , February 17, 2011 1:27 AM
    Remember those going with Android still have to pay MS some royalties.

    Going the Android way ain't the "free way" at all; just keep that in mind.

    Also, given Mr. Elop's history (simply taken, that is) he'll probably prefer closed OSes for tighter development, since even though u have Android, you still have to develop some of it to fit your phone; I still haven't heard of Google developing Android for specific phone makers, so I could be awfully wrong on that last statement.

    Cheers!
  • 0 Hide
    vkelman , February 17, 2011 1:39 AM
    I would definitely consider buying Nokia smartphone running Android. Nokia is known for its good hardware. (I would not likely consider buying Nokia WP7 phone.)
    "Nokia could not differentiate itself if using Android phones" is basically a BS: Android allows for incomparable more freedom than WP7, so that Nokia could well differentiate itself by creating customized Android ROMs and by using district hardware. Everybody understands that Microsoft basically bought /bribed Nokia by offering enormous amount of money. Plus, Nokia hopes that Elop has special relationships with Microsoft which would give it some unofficial advantages... It might be a big mistake.
  • -1 Hide
    Khimera2000 , February 17, 2011 1:43 AM
    I wouldent really wait. what ever looks good when my contract is up ill probably get. the important thing for me is services since i really dont need the applications from android, zune, or the windows market place (softwear) for me it will come down to streaming services. The three things i want is something easy and quick to navigate, NETFLIX, and zune... although im willing to switch over to rhapsody for a droid if they switch there purchased music to a higher quality (I boycoted them a while back for this).

    In the end i dont really care what OS is running on my phone, I care about the quality of the stuff i put on it, Android if Rhapsody fixes itself (only thing stopping my buy), Win Mobile 7 if they dont. Any way it goes I have till Augest.
  • 0 Hide
    vkelman , February 17, 2011 1:44 AM
    Yuka,
    As far as I understand those going with Android currently do not pay MS royalties. That's what MS wants them to do, but not yet and hopefully never.
    But yes, I don't see Mr. Elop playing nicely with open OS...
  • -1 Hide
    vkelman , February 17, 2011 1:46 AM
    ... and it sounds like you're saying that Nokia feels itself incapable even in customizing OS... maybe it's true and they lost both programming abilities and self confidence. Thousands of developers producing nothing for years...
  • -1 Hide
    beta tester , February 17, 2011 3:21 AM
    Nokia's Windows Phone deal will fail.

    People choose a phone for its OS. The hardware manufacturer is less important. Nokia backed the loosing horse with Windows Phone 7. After Windows Phone 7 fades away to the land of discarded Microsoft mobile OSes in the sky, Nokia will be forced to join the more popular Android platform.
  • 0 Hide
    digitalvampire , February 17, 2011 4:45 AM
    If I we're Google, I would have said "Either agree to use Android now, or lose the option completely, forever." ... While Nokia is the largest phone manufacturer in the world, they wouldn't have much to fall back on if (and when) the Win7 phone OS fails.

    And for those in doubt, Microsoft (who barely has any mobile market share) is CLEARLY paying Nokia (who has the largest mobile market share) for this choice. This is the business equivalent of an Olympic basketball team choosing an 8th grade school girl for their team.

    Considering Android is just another Linux distribution with a bastardized Java (yes, it gets more bastardized than Java, who'd have thought) sitting on top, Nokia could have easily differentiated itself using Android. Teenagers spitting out custom Android ROMs seems to indicate this as well. Though technical, It's not high science.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , February 17, 2011 4:50 AM
    What cracks me up about the Android conversation is I don't know a SINGLE Android owner that feels all that passionate about their freaking phone. These boards and many other smell of Google employee's or OEM's trying to keep "phone linux" alive. What is completely stupid about Android...and unfortunate that many don't realize this...is 'free' is all about Google getting search in front of people. They aren't making money in any other way and giving the OS away for free is to avoid being sued directly for patent infringement. As for the royalty comment above...all you have to do is look at the very basic patents MS holds and you'd know that there is royalties going to them.
    Android will be yesterday's news as soon as people get bored with it being a big fragmented mess as much as linux was. Being "differentiated" does not mean highly customizable per market...but it means not being just another Android like the other carriers have. All those thinking it is just a 2 OS brand market needs to take a basic class in statistics. Win7 phone will get 1/3 of the market purely based upon large populations and appeal.
    I know people getting bored with their iphone's that consider the Win7 phone just because its different.
    Again...my informal survey of every Android owner I know gets this response, "it's alright. Does what I need it to do.". Apple owners have a LOT more passion than that...and so do the Win7 phone users that I've talked to.
    At least Apple and MS collaborate on intellectual property. Google is just hurting their own industry by handing everything out for free to try and obtain market share. America Online anyone? Hmmm....
  • 0 Hide
    thorkle , February 17, 2011 5:07 AM
    CyberAngelNobody makes a bad move when billions of dollars of profit are on stake.Me thinks M$ & Nokia are not stupid at all.I just sold my apartment and bought cheap stock. After three years of ownership I'm gonna seell them and buy a house with a garage for two cars

    How do you sell an apartment? Do you mean condo? I hope it works out well for you either way.
  • 2 Hide
    digitalvampire , February 17, 2011 5:15 AM
    1) Linux "WAS"? ROFL!!!! Ping 70+ percent of the web servers ON THE PLANET and tell me what they are running. GO AHEAD. TELL ME!!!

    2) Google is a Linux company. Their search engine is a 200,000+ machine Linux cluster. That's it.

    3) Microsoft claimed that Linux violates many of it's patents. Last time it tried to sue (this past year) they lost 3 of their patents. Please for the love of god, try again. While were at it, sue IBM as well, whose patent portfolio makes Microsoft's look like a ragged moleskine, and who's income is largely dependant on Linux.

    4) OF COURSE Apple people are fanatics about their phone. Have you ever met someone who uses Apple? Apple could piss in a cup and feed it to them. Certain smart phone application developers actually charge only for the iPhone/iPad versions of their applications because "Apple people aren't smart with their money." On a side note, we actually studied them as a cult in one of our liberal arts media classes (GPA booster, of course).

    5) You are correct about the percentage, though I doubt it'll be 1/3. As Google stated before, it's not a zero-sum game.

    6) If you are going into ANY kind of science/engineering as a future, do yourself a favour and learn *nix now. I live in the south (you know, where we're all moronic and don't have paved roads XD) and even our universities (Engineering & CS Depts.) have replaced their labs w/ all Linux machines.
  • 0 Hide
    vkelman , February 17, 2011 6:04 AM
    DWman is dreaming, don't disturb him.
  • 2 Hide
    Wish I Was Wealthy , February 17, 2011 7:17 AM
    To tell the truth If I had enough cash I would buy Nokia's & Microsofts partnership as well,since I like to buy new gear every now & again just to check out how things go...So you could say that I would not wait & buy now if I had the spare cash...
  • 1 Hide
    marciocattini , February 17, 2011 11:10 AM
    So much windows hate... don't mean to offend anyone but with this new updates wp7 is looking pretty sweet. Its not a bad OS at all...
    None of them are perfect if u think about it... u get this awesome new phone with 2.1 android and will never know whether u will make use of its hardware to its fullest cause you have to wait on ur manufacturer to release updates when 2.3 is pretty much available??
    Apps aside, I think being able to upgrade my phone is still right up there in my list so yeah I'd consider buying nokie with wp7
  • -1 Hide
    icemunk , February 17, 2011 11:46 AM
    I believe it would be in Nokia's best interest to also produce phones with Google Android
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